Yaralla Sports Club to take over

YARALLA Sports Club will take over ownership of the Gladstone Golf Club course permanently, after members voted overwhelmingly for the organisation to retain ownership.

Golf club members had the chance to take back club ownership on Wednesday night.

Speaking before the ballot, Carl Smithson, a club member for the past 18 months, said members he’d spoken to wanted the club to flourish and this would only occur with the sports club’s involvement.

“We want Yaralla to keep the course, so they can spend some money and make it a better course,” he said.

“The course has potential, but has been run down the past 18 months.”

Yaralla Sports Club general manager Will Schroeder said the course would be improved over the next five to 20 years and members would end up with a great golf course.

“I appreciate the trust the members have shown in us, and know it’s been a hard decision for some to reach,” Schroeder said.

“Now we have this, we can sit down and make plans and we’ll be looking for input.”

Yaralla came to the rescue years ago in a bid to keep the club going after it ran into financial strife, and as part of the deal done the club had the option to buy the course back for one dollar. Gladstone Golf Club president Vern Gilbert chaired the meeting and said the information night held recently was the “turning point” in the negotiations.

“Yaralla came to the fore with a better offer and we’re looking forward to working with them,” he said.

While some members had reservations about the course being sold off, Gilbert believed these fears had been allayed through an addition to the deed.

“We’ve put safeguards in place that guarantees the course will remain at the same rating it was before,” he said.



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