The country's golf courses will re-open on the 18th May after the government announced easing of the Covid-19 lockdown measures

Golf Courses In Ireland To Re-Open On 18th May

Golf courses in the Republic of Ireland will re-open on 18th May after an announcement from the government.

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar announced a plan for Coronavirus lockdown measures to be loosened and said that “some outdoor sporting activities will be allowed” from 18th May.

Irish Golf’s national governing bodies – Golf Ireland, the Irish Ladies Golf Union and the Golfing Union of Ireland said in a statement that they “have warmly welcomed the Taoiseach’s confirmation that golf courses can reopen for play on a restricted basis in the first phase of the Government’s roadmap for the easing of Covid-19 restrictions later this month.”

They say that they are now finalising a protocol in the coming week of how the game will be played safely.

Play will be for members only and competitions will not be permitted, and crucially only members who live within 5 kilometres from their club will be able to play.

This is because the current travel restrictions of 2km lift to 5km today up until 8th June when they will be extended to 20km

This announcement only applies to golf courses in the Republic of Ireland and not Northern Ireland as well.

“The governing bodies will continue to work with the U.K. authorities and the Northern Ireland Executive to seek the safe resumption of golf for our clubs in Northern Ireland,” the statement said.

The UK could be soon to follow Ireland in re-opening its courses after the chairman of the UK Parliament’s All-Party Group for Golf said that golf “can, and should, return quickly.”

The R&A also announced its guidelines for how the game will be played safely upon return and said that the proposals had been given to the government.

Mark Kennelly, CEO of Golf Ireland said: “The golf community in Ireland welcomes the Taoiseach’s confirmation that our clubs can reopen on a restricted basis in the first phase of the Government’s plan to ease the Covid-19 restrictions.

“This means that golf will be one of the first sports to resume and will give golf club members the opportunity to return to play on a limited but safe basis.

“Golf offers the potential to play a significant role in the recovery from this crisis in public health terms. Our sport provides a valuable outlet for healthy outdoor activity which can be enjoyed with the appropriate safety measures in place”.

“We hope that, later in the year, golf can also make a valuable contribution to economic recovery, particularly in the domestic tourism sector.”

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