HOUSES in an Argyll town are under siege by a constant stream of wayward golf balls as teenagers sneak onto a nearby golf course without paying.
The poorly aimed shots are made from the ninth hole at Lochgilphead Golf Course and should land on the green below.
But incompetent golfers are cutting balls 120 meters from the target and sending them flying towards houses on Blarbuie Road.
A woman whose car and house windows were repeatedly smashed has spoken out on Facebook after she was almost “wiped out” by a ball last week.
Karen McDonald, of End Terrace in Blarbuie Road, said her house and car were “battered” a few times a week.
Looking for a solution, Karen wrote on the Lochgilphead Community Bulletin Board Facebook page. She gushed: “The amount of golf balls that end up in our yard is beyond a joke!!!!”
“Was just out by the trash cans and almost got destroyed!!! The car and house also get damaged a few times a week. Yes, we had broken windows, but luckily the golfers were decent enough to come over and tell us.”
“But more often than not, the person will run off course and act like they don’t see us when we look down on them!”
“There should be an age limit and more lessons for those who tee off from the top tee opposite the house.
“I really don’t know anything about golf, but I do know that there is a certain club you shouldn’t use there!!!
“When we moved here a few years ago we got a few that will probably live next to a golf course, but no more than a hundred!!!
“Does anyone have any ideas about what can be done here? I am really worried.”
She shared a photo showing a stack of around 135 balls that landed in her garden.
Club captain Eddie Shaw said they were plagued by anti-social behavior from non-members under 18.
He has spoken to residents on Blarbuie Road and contacted housing association Fyne Homes to discuss possible control measures.
The club has posted signs reminding golfers to be aware of neighboring properties and has highlighted the issue in the visitor information sheet in the clubhouse.
Green fees are paid via an honesty box system and juniors are not permitted to register visitors. The club only has about 100 members on the nine-hole course.
But there were problems with people not paying. The club reminds visitors that non-payment is considered theft.
This also means that they are not covered by the club’s insurance in the event of an incident.
Eddie said: “All members have been notified by email but based on the evidence I have received I believe it is youngsters who are not members and have not paid their green fees who are responsible for golf balls to hit the front area of number 25.”
Currently there are only security cameras in the clubhouse, but now they are considering putting a camera on the ninth stadium.
Eddie added: “The golf club places great value on youth because they are the future of the club and without them the future of our existence is bleak.”
“Although the season has now ended, next year we will be considering enlisting the support of Lochgilphead High School to promote membership and help provide information to improve the junior golf experience.
“For the 2024 season, the committee will consider a mentoring program for juniors that will give them the opportunity to play a few holes with a member who can advise them on course etiquette, rules of golf and tips to improve their quality of play. “
“The association would like to point out that children under 14 must be accompanied by an adult at all times. Juniors (under 16 years of age) whose parents are not golfers will benefit from the mentoring program.”
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