Dalmuir latest municipal at risk

Growing Golf

Scotland-based golf magazine bunkered has thrown its weight behind a petition to save Dalmuir Municipal Golf Course from closure.

The 96-year-old course is owned and run by West Dunbartonshire Council, a region north-west of Glasgow, and is a popular community facility with affordable green fees for the public to play (from £11/$14 for adults and £5.50/$7 for juniors).

The local authority is planning to shut it down, however, which bunkered’s Deputy Editor Michael McEwan says cannot happen.

Michael McEwan

“Take municipal courses away and you risk making golf a sport played only by those who can afford it. That’s just not right,” McEwan says in a video encouraging people to sign a petition to keep it open.

“Dalmuir isn’t going to host The Open and it probably isn’t on many people’s bucket lists, but that’s not the point, that’s not why it exists.

“Just like all other municipal golf courses, it exists to make golf affordable and accessible to everybody.”

The petition has already amassed more than 7,000 signatures towards a target of 7,500.

Dalmuir Municipal is not alone in facing closure – courses all over the world are under threat as competition for green space grows and affordable housing becomes increasingly scarce. 

Courses struggling to meet rising costs are being approached by developers with lucrative offers to sell their land.

Enfield Golf Club in East London was the target of a research project called ‘Holes to Homes’, which proposed building 650 homes in low- to mid-rise tower blocks on the land.

And in Berkshire, a campaign is under way to stop developers building 1,800 houses at Maidenhead Golf Club, after the course sold its lease back to the local authority for £16m in 2022.

Part of the problem is that golf is widely seen as bad for the environment – something highlighted in a Syngenta report published last year analysing the sentiment towards golf on social media.


The research concluded that golf needed to change perceptions around sustainability and the value of facilities to communities and the environment. 

Mark Birchmore, Sygnenta’s Global Head of Marketing, Turf & Landscape, said: “There are a wealth of case studies that demonstrate golf courses’ sustainability credentials.

“These compelling examples serve as proof of the industry’s commitment to environmental stewardship and sustainable practices. It’s important that golf courses, and the industry, communicate these stories to change perceptions.”