Golf courses and tennis courts set to reopen from coronavirus lockdown

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Picture: Getty Images/iStockphoto - Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

Golf courses and tennis courts are set to reopen over the coming days and weeks as part of tentative steps from the Government to ease the coronavirus lockdown.

Both sports and angling have been deemed permissible under the eased conditions which allow people to go outside for exercise more than once a day.

England Golf and the Lawn Tennis Association (LTA) both released statements on how the respective sports can be played going forward.

Golfers will be able to play individually, in two-ball rounds with an individual from another household, or in two, three or four-balls if all members are in the same household, at the discretion of the golf club.

Social distancing rules must be adhered to at all times.

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Royal North Devon (RND) Golf Club, Great Torrington Golf Club and Portmore Golf Park are among those set to reopen on Wednesday (May 13) under the conditions.

RND general manager Mark Evans said the club had been forced to furlough the majority of its staff when the lockdown began, leaving two employed.

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He said it had been a ‘long few weeks’, with lots of income lost. With no out-of-area visitors expected until July at the earliest, the club is still set to be hit financially.

Portmore is set to open for members who have pre-booked a tee time from Wednesday. Visitors will be able to use the course and driving range from Sunday, May 17.

Outdoor tennis courts will also be in use from Wednesday.

A statement from the LTA said: “Following further clarifications we have received from Government, tennis activity in England will be able to take place outdoors from Wednesday with singles play only, other than where players are all from the same household in which case they can play doubles.

“We’re finalising full guidance for players, coaches and venues and aim to share this as soon as possible.”

Ilfracombe Tennis Club said it would be unlocking its courts from Wednesday for all to play under the guidelines.

Atlantic Racquet Centre in Bideford said it was its intention to ‘open some or all’ of its facilities ‘as soon as it is safe and appropriate to do so’.

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