50 years for the birdies

Ocean Grove Golf Club vice-president Peter Cullen with president Colin Stephens. 150759

OCEAN Grove Golf Club president Collin Stephens thanked Geelong Council and local councillor Jan Farrell last week, for approving a 50-year lease.
Mr Stephens said the club originally approached the council to purchase the land under its clubhouse to secure its future.
This was not accepted but council negotiated a 50-year lease with the club last month.
Mr Stephens said the club started many years ago as a make-shift course on a tip with some funding from the council.
“Over the years the club has put some millions of dollars back into the course and clubhouse,” he said.
“Neither council nor the community have to pay anything for our club due to our wonderful volunteers, who have worked so hard over the years.”
It was a welcome decision for the club, which needed a loan for planned renovations to the course, including bridge and water strategy works.
“Because we are self-funded – unlike some of the other council courses – we found ourselves in a vulnerable situation,” he said.
“This 50-year lease will allow us to do that work with a loan that has a realistic period that we can repay.”
Cr Farrell said the future of the Ocean Grove Golf Club was significantly clearer following council’s decision.
She was thrilled for the club’s management and said they could now concentrate on planning course facilities.
“The Ocean Grove Golf Club is situated in a unique and stunning location next to the river,” she said.
“The new lease secures the location and means the club can become a real drawcard for our region.”