Golf makes a return as restrictions ease
THE easing of lockdown restrictions across the Victoria that came into effect yesterday (Wednesday, May 13) have allowed for certain recreational activities to restart, albeit subject to various constraints.
The Department of Health and Human Services Victoria states people can participate in training for all sports, but it must be non-contact, with only 10 people participating at any one time in addition to those people running the training (such as coach or manager).
“This means that contact sports will not be able to occur… unless modifications are made to ensure physical distancing.
Indoor sports remain prohibited.
These changes allow golf clubs to re-open their courses. Anglesea Golf Club is among those to welcome players back onto its fairways.
The club’s general manager David Sanders said the club will only be open to members at this stage to ensure the number of players was manageable.
“It will be members only when we open up, mainly so it’s easier to enforce social distancing along with any issues if we get incidents in regards to coronavirus.”
Sanders said the club had taken several other steps to ensure social distancing guidelines were followed.
“We’ve got one tee starts and we’ve put in the local rules that they can’t touch flags. There’s no bunker rakes, there’s notices everywhere advising people, limits to the number of people that can be in the pro shop.
“We’re requesting people not to arrive any longer than 15-minutes before they start and leave as soon as they finish their golf, there’s one person per golf cart, there’s 10-minute intervals between tee times compared to six, so that they’re spread out more along the course, and we’ve already disconnected and removed all the bubblers on the course.”
Sanders said limiting the course to members only meant the club would not be generating any additional income to previous weeks, but he said he was pleased it “at least allows members to use their golf course”.
The Sands Torquay golf operations supervisor Frank Myers said his club would similarly be putting in certain measures to reduce the risk of the virus spreading.
He said it was important players exhibit the necessary care.
“We’re asking people to make sure they not to arrive too long before their tee-time and exhibit social distancing.”
The change in restrictions also provides some more freedom for surfing lessons to be held, but Torquay Surf Academy’s Seamus Wakefield said more will have to change before business returns to normal.
“There still aren’t any tourists flowing through, which makes up a lot of the business we have. But hopefully our numbers do increase in the next few weeks.”
Fishing and boating are now also permissible again in Victoria.
The Great Ocean Road Coast Committee has subsequently reopened all beaches and lookouts on their land, as wells as Fishermans Beach boat ramp and fish cleaning station. Point Roadknight boat ramp and fish cleaning station, Point Grey boat launching area, Lorne Pier.
When announcing the relaxed regulation, Premier Daniel Andrews stressed people need to avoid unnecessary risks.
“Our message has not changed: if you can stay at home – you must stay at home.”