Funding secured by golf club in bid to alleviate flooding

Flooding at the Vertish Hill golf course
Flooding at the Vertish Hill golf course

HAWICK Golf Club has been awarded up to £42,000 to help alleviate flooding issues.

The money has been approved from the Common Good Fund, although the amount is believed to be an absolute maximum estimate and it is hoped the total can be offset by a further grant application to the Landfill Agency.

It comes following a study by Halcrow Ltd, commissioned by Scottish Borders Council, to look into options for drainage of the course.

It was found that many of the small drains that run under the course are collapsed and their capacity exceeded during heavy rainfall. There were also issues over pipes transferring water from pipes under the road alongside the second and third fairways into the adjacent common field.

And because of the capacity of a pipe which outfalls directly into the Haggis Ha’ burn downstream of the Paterson Gardens access road (540mm in diameter) and the poor inlet conditions, it was identified that water isn’t capable of entering the pipe and spills back to the east onto the golf course.

At yesterday’s meeting, culvert improvement works and catchment drainage improvements were approved, with the total cost not to exceed £42,200.

Golf club captain Roddy McIntyre told the Hawick News: “Our members feel that they are paying to play for 12 months of the year, but because of the flooding issues and the course being closed a lot in the winter and spring they are only getting about seven months golf and this is seen as being quite costly.

“If we can alleviate the flooding then that means we can keep the course open for longer periods.”

The club currently lease the land from the Common Good with an annual payment of £9,600. However, it has been agreed to reduce their rent by somewhere in the region of £20,000 on a scaled bases over the next five years.

Mr McIntyre added: “Because the club is in a transitional period in that we are encouraging new members and our hugely successful Academy has doubled the number of junior members, we plan to make Hawick one of the big success stories of the Borders.

“However, we felt that we needed a bit of aid over the next five years with regard to our rent package. We are delighted that the Common Good listened to us and agreed to a reduction.”