The first big step on the long road towards resurrecting Dunedoo’s severely damaged golf course is about to begin, but the challenges the Club faces are becoming very apparent.
Laying 40,000 square metres of turf and a couple of thousand metres of irrigation, spreading tonnes of topsoil, finding specialist staff to oversee the grow back, and a water bill that could become breathtaking are some of the issues the Club faces as it begins to rebuild after last month’s vandal attack.
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The grass, organised through 2GB’s Ray Hadley and Dad & Dave’s Turf, has been sourced from across NSW, Queensland and Victoria. It will arrive on June 9th, and take about three days to lay.
“We need as many volunteers as we can get over the three days,” Dunedoo President Mark Gallagher said. “We will need all the help we van get.”
With the financial reality of the situation becoming more apparent by the day, Gallagher admitted the repair bill was sobering, coming in at around $620,000.
“Aquawest at Dubbo is ready to fix the irrigation, and we need to have it sorted before the grass goes down, but we are at a bit of a stalemate at the moment, costs-wise.
“We have some cash in and expect more, but it would be nice to know the money is in the bank before we can commit to all of the repairs.
In addition to the repair bill, Gallagher said course takings were down by over half.
“We’ve lost over 50% of our green fees. We are still trying to play, but we are down a lot.
“We have a charity day this weekend with the local hospital auxiliary, and people are asking if it was still going ahead.
“We have to hold it to be honest. Hopefully it will help both causes.”
While assistance from the NSW Golf Foundation and donations to the Club’s GoFundMe campaign (which hit the $10,000 mark overnight) was extremely heartening, Gallagher said the Deputy Premier’s Office had also reached out to the Club.
“John Barilaro’s office has been in contact and is seeing what they can do to find some funds.
“Our local member said he will see what can be done as well.”
Undaunted by the task of rebuilding, the Dunedoo community has taken to the job, busy fixing what they can on the all but destroyed course.
Local farmers with access to heavy machinery have already begun levelling the ploughed up fairways, while an industrial-sized hydraulic harrow is ready to go over the course and remove all of the dead grass it can.
“Our biggest problem is winter starts next week.
“The new turf will go dormant, but we have got to keep watering then wait until the winter has gone to see what sort of growth we get.”
“It’s gunna take months,” Gallagher admitted.