Historic golf club teed up for new state-of-the-art facilities

Architectural render of Dunbar Golf Club development

PROPOSALS to radically upgrade facilities at one of Scotland’s most historic golf clubs have taken a step forward after terms were agreed with CALA Homes (East) and a detailed planning application submitted.

Included in the proposals at Dunbar Golf Club – founded in 1856 – is a brand-new clubhouse, a nine-hole short course, golf academy, driving range and new greenkeeper facilities.

Funding for the upgrades will be enabled by a 78-home development by CALA, designed to blend into the surroundings and split between two locations within the club’s existing land.

Phase one will see the construction of the clubhouse, golf academy and driving range along with 60 new homes to the south of the site, towards Deer Park Cemetery, while 18 homes will form phase two to the north, on land which includes the location of the current clubhouse.

Renowned practice G1 Architects is behind the designs for the £3.6m clubhouse, following on from celebrated projects at Castle Stuart Golf Links, Kingsbarns and the recently opened clubhouse at Dumbarnie Links. 

The nine-hole par-three course is designed by RAW Golf Design – a practice formed by David J Russell and 1991 Masters Winner, Ian Woosnam.

Tony Thomas, of APT Planning and Development, which is representing Dunbar Golf Club and CALA Homes, said: “These new facilities will provide a massive boost to the club and will produce many long term benefits such as attracting new participants to golf, growing golf tourism in the area and generating more permanent employment within the local community.

“The clubhouse and greenkeeper facilities were in need of renovation and the new academy driving range and short course will be a welcome addition to the current championship course.”

As well as the major economic boost – through construction contracts and long-term employment opportunities created within the club’s staff team including hospitality, PGA services and greenkeeping- these new facilities will ensure the long term attraction of Dunbar Golf Club to the international visitor market and the valuable golf tourism spend which also benefits many local businesses including restaurants, hotels and taxi services.     

Jacky Montgomery, PGA Director of Golf at Dunbar Golf Club, said: “Having these exciting new facilities will not only be a major benefit for our members and visitors, but it opens up significant opportunities for local people to get involved in golf and to enjoy the many health and well-being aspects of participating in the sport.

“From the driving range and academy, through to the short game practice area and the Par 3 golf course, we are breaking down barriers into the game. It will also give us much greater scope to further develop the work we do with our local schools and community groups.”

Planning Permission in Principle (PPiP) for the development was granted in October 2015. Plans have since been reviewed following a joint consultation held by Dunbar Golf Club and CALA Homes (East) in April 2019, where a proposed hotel was removed from the plans. 

Craig Lynes, Managing Director for CALA Homes (East), said: “The enabling development proposals have been created in close collaboration with Dunbar Golf Club, council planners and the local community in order maximise benefits for the club and the wider Dunbar area.

“This project has the potential to leave a powerful legacy, both in terms of sport and leisure –  and local prosperity.

“It’s also an honour and privilege to have the opportunity to play a role in the next chapter of one of Scotland’s oldest golf clubs.”

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