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Golf Courses In England ‘Use Twice As Much Land As Housing’

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I think there was a long thread on this several years ago. If I recall correctly, the figure for the area occupied by housing was arrived at by only considering the physical footprint of residential buildings, ignoring gardens, garages, roads, pavements, paths, shops, etc.

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The 10% figure for built up areas in the article is roughly accurate but iirc a BUA is something like a settlement >10hectares (maybe 20?) so it doesn't include smaller settlements but it does include gardens, non residential buildings etc. The sums may work if "housing" = houses with no gardens and no amenities but it's really just huffpost clickbait.

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Im sure golf course consume an astonishing amount of water too. Golf is a game of wealthy elites so makes sense to keep the proles in shacks and use up all the fresh water so a couple of rich guys can hit a ball with sticks.

Turf requires an average of 25 to 60 inches (63.5 cm to 152.4 cm) of water annually, depending on climate, to maintain a healthy appearance. Most of this water is required during summer months (1.5 to 2 inches per week (3.8 cm to 5.08 cm), when rainfall is lowest, often totaling less than 0.5 inch per week (1.3 cm). Unlike trees and shrubs, turf grasses have very little capacity to store water and withstand periods of drought. Golf course turf usually needs water applied at least twice per week in the summer. Any deficit in rainfall must be supplemented with irrigation. A typical golf course requires 100,000 to 1,000,000 gallons (378.5 m3 to 3,785 m3) of water per week in summer to maintain healthy vegetation.

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And spending time on them is far better for health than languishing in a box with windows!

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Im sure golf course consume an astonishing amount of water too. Golf is a game of wealthy elites so makes sense to keep the proles in shacks and use up all the fresh water so a couple of rich guys can hit a ball with sticks.

Standard lack of understanding based upon Hollywood portrayal and bandwagonism.

A person can get the required equipment for golf and play twice a month through summer for less than a league 1 season ticket. Rich people also play it.

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Houses should be built with big gardens.Planning regs should make sure they have hedges instead of fences to the floor.Farmers fields have zero wildlife on them these days.New houses with tiny block paved gardens and fences down to the ground have zero wildlife.Old style semis with big gardens linked with hedges,trees etc are stuffed with wildlife.

I say far better to build on those empty fields and provide big gardens that are designed for people and wildlife instead of the crap they build now with 2 inches of topsoil.

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Is that really true? I think golf is in a big decline. Quite the contrary to being blackballed, I know someone who is being courted to become a member of a prestigious golf club (considering the area), to help may fees for the upkeep of the course.

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"Golf is a game of wealthy elites" ....... Hahaha. Don't make me scream with laughter! I am a keen golfer and I'm a working wage slave like most on here. Annual golf club membership is £1200 pa paid monthly by DD. I know dozens of other golfers too and they range from taxi drivers, builders etc to accountants, doctors etc. It's a great hobby, very healthy for a middle age bloke like me and a good way to stay in touch with my old mates now we're all a bit passed it to play football or go out on the pull on a Fri\Sat night.

Please don't try and demonise golfers

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Im sure golf course consume an astonishing amount of water too. Golf is a game of wealthy elites so makes sense to keep the proles in shacks and use up all the fresh water so a couple of rich guys can hit a ball with sticks.

In the UK, we have this phenomenon called rain, that tends to be distributed throughout the year. Ample to feed a golf course, but causes serious problems (called floods) when the density of built-on (or otherwise degraded) land gets too high.

A person can get the required equipment for golf and play twice a month through summer for less than a league 1 season ticket. Rich people also play it.

Really? Asked locally[1] a few years back and it was £600/year just to join. That makes it a many times more expensive than some things the inverted-snobs sneer at (like enjoying the opera) before you take your first stroke.

[1] we were looking at options for a retirement present (having had a decent whip-round) for a friend who likes the outdoor life.

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In the UK, we have this phenomenon called rain, that tends to be distributed throughout the year. Ample to feed a golf course, but causes serious problems (called floods) when the density of built-on (or otherwise degraded) land gets too high.

Really? Asked locally[1] a few years back and it was £600/year just to join. That makes it a many times more expensive than some things the inverted-snobs sneer at (like enjoying the opera) before you take your first stroke.

[1] we were looking at options for a retirement present (having had a decent whip-round) for a friend who likes the outdoor life.

£12 per week. Play twice a week and that is about £1.50 per hour. I would call that exceptional value for money.

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Really? Asked locally[1] a few years back and it was £600/year just to join. That makes it a many times more expensive than some things the inverted-snobs sneer at (like enjoying the opera) before you take your first stroke.

Really. Don't get caught under the wheels of your own bandwagon.

You don't have to be a member to play.

Membership costs vary, as with anything.

It's too obvious when people try to talk about things they have zero experience with.

That's you, by the way, in this instance.

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"Golf is a game of wealthy elites" ....... Hahaha. Don't make me scream with laughter! I am a keen golfer and I'm a working wage slave like most on here. Annual golf club membership is £1200 pa paid monthly by DD. I know dozens of other golfers too and they range from taxi drivers, builders etc to accountants, doctors etc. It's a great hobby, very healthy for a middle age bloke like me and a good way to stay in touch with my old mates now we're all a bit passed it to play football or go out on the pull on a Fri\Sat night.

Please don't try and demonise golfers

to be fair I think golf is a better hobby than many.

Even at the age of 40 the only social activity i can get most of my friends to do is go to the pub on a Saturday night for a few drinks.

A game of golf instead would be much more preferable, I did go through a phase of suggesting of activities a few years ago without much luck.

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Haha

out of all the offensive things I have ever said on this website attacking golf gets the biggest rise.

I actually know a fair bit about golf, I used to play it on council run courses in scotland for next to nothing I have also played a fair few tom morris courses too my particular favourite is balcombie links so I am not some sort of rambling peasant I only said it tongue in cheek but as a sport it is struggling, even round yorkshire the local papers are often full of really dirt cheap memberships and offers. It has probably never been cheaper to pick up as a sport.

However they do use a stupid amount of water, now this might not be an issue in Scotland where they have to roll around trying to push the flooding off it in August but down south where there is supposedly a water shortage I do wonder when local water companies give me a little thing to put in my cistern and yet everyday when I drove to work the big private courses had the sprinklers on full blast all summer. This is typical of the whole environmental hypocrisy that goes on, I guess the private golf mafia can get things done.

If this figure is correct from the huffington post it is a tragic examples of how a handful of landed elites have curtailed residential building to maintain there own assets and position.

Its probably a shitload easier to get planning permission to build a golf course in the UK than a house so maybe I should design a house that looks like a golf course!

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Loving golf at the minute. Me and a couple of mates take a flyer from work on a Friday and spend 2 hours laughing at each other hacking our way around 9 holes in 75 shots. Never talk about work once, which is unusual for us.

I'm sure I read that golf courses occupy about 7% of land nationally, seemed like a lot but not infeasible. And it is in decline as a sport. I see it as a reflection of the trend towards people being cash rich and time poor. Membership at a decent enough club will set you back £60-80/month. Compare that to boozing and the gym and it's not outrageous. Unfortunately there aren't many people who like the idea of spending 5 hours of their saturday and a couple of hours midweek playing and practicing.

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Really. Don't get caught under the wheels of your own bandwagon.

You don't have to be a member to play.

Membership costs vary, as with anything.

It's too obvious when people try to talk about things they have zero experience with.

That's you, by the way, in this instance.

I make no claim to know anything about golf.

I'm just surprised that a season ticket that I thought from your language was for some sporting (football?) event and merely for being a spectator, should be anywhere near that expensive. Let alone cost more, as you had claimed.

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Around 11% of England is urban. For the UK as a whole the number is much lower.

Urban includes gardens, rivers, parks, and so on. Just over 2% is actually built on.

So 2% is the headline grabber, 11% is probably a more realistic figure, although some of the difference could be used for housing.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-18623096

Something like 70% is farmland.

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most private golf courses have rights of way running across them so public can walk across them for free

Win/win

Average cost seems to be roughly equivalent to pint of beer/day so hardly elitist. In fact most golfers seem to be complete plebs

I'm aware of several rural ones that have closed due to unsustainable business plan. Probably not surprising since supply in terms of rounds available per day is naturally self-limited by duration per hole (c. 15mins) x participants per hole x number of holes (18) x hours in day

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Sportive cycling/triathlon are now the 'go to' sports for those with a bent for ostentatious spending on equipment of dubious necessity.

I ain't judging people for spending on their hobbies, even if only for a marginal gain that will unlikely be realised. I watched a sportive go past me the other day, I wouldn't like to guess the average spend/bike for the machines going past.

Do golf clubs struggle with utilisation rates if/as their membership is shifting to people mostly in work? Could imagine the course being at risk of underuse during weekdays, times where many working people just cannot go. No way to store that unused capacity when a surge in requests for tee off times comes along on a nice weekday evening.

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Around 11% of England is urban. For the UK as a whole the number is much lower.

Urban includes gardens, rivers, parks, and so on. Just over 2% is actually built on.

So 2% is the headline grabber, 11% is probably a more realistic figure, although some of the difference could be used for housing.

A quick estimate from looking at aerial pictures of some Victorian terraces near here and I'd say the houses themselves take up (very) approximately 50%, the rest being roads, back yards etc, and that's a pretty densely developed area, probably only beaten by city centres. Looking at some (probably) 1930s suburban estates and it's a much lower percentage. Useful for comparing different styles of development, misleading for trying to say that much less of the country is developed than you might think, where the percentage of urban or suburban land is more meaningful.

Edited by Riedquat

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Sportive cycling/triathlon are now the 'go to' sports for those with a bent for ostentatious spending on equipment of dubious necessity.

I ain't judging people for spending on their hobbies, even if only for a marginal gain that will unlikely be realised. I watched a sportive go past me the other day, I wouldn't like to guess the average spend/bike for the machines going past.

Do golf clubs struggle with utilisation rates if/as their membership is shifting to people mostly in work? Could imagine the course being at risk of underuse during weekdays, times where many working people just cannot go. No way to store that unused capacity when a surge in requests for tee off times comes along on a nice weekday evening.

Many golf clubs now operate function suites to bolster their revenue.

Of course, midweek golf has always been quieter. It's nice for the members who tend to be a healthy mix of shift workers, self employed, taxi drivers etc, and the retirees. It feels like their course for those five days.

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Many golf clubs now operate function suites to bolster their revenue.

Of course, midweek golf has always been quieter. It's nice for the members who tend to be a healthy mix of shift workers, self employed, taxi drivers etc, and the retirees. It feels like their course for those five days.

They ought to build on the last 9 holes of 20% of the courses, that'd boost revenue and you can imagine pretty much every golf course owner able to do so would.

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A decent road bike is basically peanuts these days for the quality you get and how many miles you will get out of it.

Of course you can also spend £5k on one if you want. Quite often your older out of shape blokes who do this. Spend an extra £1k to save a kilo in weight.

Just lose it off your belly ffs !!

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They ought to build on the last 9 holes of 20% of the courses, that'd boost revenue and you can imagine pretty much every golf course owner able to do so would.

Some places with extra land have already done so without impacting the course negatively. That would be ideal...... If a shortage of houses was the problem.

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