Golfers in the region were able to get back on the greens on Wednesday (May 13) as golf courses reopened.

Scenes from Royal North Devon Golf Club, which reopened on May 13 as part of a relaxation of some coronavirus lockdown restrictions. Picture: Matt SmartScenes from Royal North Devon Golf Club, which reopened on May 13 as part of a relaxation of some coronavirus lockdown restrictions. Picture: Matt Smart

Courses have been allowed to reopen as part of tentative steps from the Government to ease coronavirus lockdown restrictions.

Golfers are able to play individually, in rounds with family members or in a two-ball round with an individual from another household, with social distancing rules to be adhered to at all times.

Royal North Devon, Great Torrington, Portmore, Holsworthy and Libbaton are among the North Devon courses which reopened to members on Wednesday, with Saunton set to follow on Thursday (May 14)

At England’s oldest golf course, Royal North Devon, general manager Mark Evans said golfers were so keen to book tee times, the booking system used by courses up and down the country kept crashing.

Scenes from Royal North Devon Golf Club, which reopened on May 13 as part of a relaxation of some coronavirus lockdown restrictions. Picture: Matt SmartScenes from Royal North Devon Golf Club, which reopened on May 13 as part of a relaxation of some coronavirus lockdown restrictions. Picture: Matt Smart

“It’s been full since 7am, limited to two people per tee,” said Mr Evans.

“Everybody is just glad to get out and get some fresh air, and it’s nice to have income coming back in rather than having to refund people!”

Jeremy Thomlinson, chief executive of England Golf, said: “Whether it’s going out with a member of your household or meeting up with a pal again, being able to play social golf will undoubtedly lift the mood of our golfing community.

“I’d like to acknowledge the amazing work that has been going on in the background to prepare for golf’s comeback.

Scenes from Royal North Devon Golf Club, which reopened on May 13 as part of a relaxation of some coronavirus lockdown restrictions. Picture: Matt SmartScenes from Royal North Devon Golf Club, which reopened on May 13 as part of a relaxation of some coronavirus lockdown restrictions. Picture: Matt Smart

“The reality now, of course, is that there is more hard work on the horizon.

“The financial issues raised by temporary business closure during the pandemic also means that there are tough times ahead for all clubs.

“We are not out of the woods on this one. Rest assured England Golf will do all it can to support our clubs in the weeks and months ahead.

“The threat from Covid-19 is also still very real and there is a huge onus on all of us to make sure we Stay Alert and don’t become complacent.

Scenes from Royal North Devon Golf Club, which reopened on May 13 as part of a relaxation of some coronavirus lockdown restrictions. Picture: Matt SmartScenes from Royal North Devon Golf Club, which reopened on May 13 as part of a relaxation of some coronavirus lockdown restrictions. Picture: Matt Smart

“Health remains the priority and we cannot take our eye off the ball and put strain back on the NHS and frontline workers who deserve our support and backing now more than ever.

“There are many challenges ahead, but today is a day to be celebrated and enjoyed.

“Today, more than any other, it really is the taking part that counts.”

Scenes from Royal North Devon Golf Club, which reopened on May 13 as part of a relaxation of some coronavirus lockdown restrictions. Picture: Matt SmartScenes from Royal North Devon Golf Club, which reopened on May 13 as part of a relaxation of some coronavirus lockdown restrictions. Picture: Matt Smart

Scenes from Royal North Devon Golf Club, which reopened on May 13 as part of a relaxation of some coronavirus lockdown restrictions. Picture: Matt SmartScenes from Royal North Devon Golf Club, which reopened on May 13 as part of a relaxation of some coronavirus lockdown restrictions. Picture: Matt Smart

Scenes from Royal North Devon Golf Club, which reopened on May 13 as part of a relaxation of some coronavirus lockdown restrictions. Picture: Matt SmartScenes from Royal North Devon Golf Club, which reopened on May 13 as part of a relaxation of some coronavirus lockdown restrictions. Picture: Matt Smart

Scenes from Royal North Devon Golf Club, which reopened on May 13 as part of a relaxation of some coronavirus lockdown restrictions. Picture: Matt SmartScenes from Royal North Devon Golf Club, which reopened on May 13 as part of a relaxation of some coronavirus lockdown restrictions. Picture: Matt Smart