Ballarat Golf Club has shut its doors due to the dangers of COVID-19 as some of the region's other big courses remain open.
In an email to members on Monday, the BGC confirmed the clubhouse and course were closed, but the likes of RACV Goldfields in Creswick, Midlands and Buninyong are still open for play.
BGC general manager Gary Fry followed up with another email to stakeholders on Tuesday explaining more about the decision to cease operation.
He cited legal opinions, the inability to manage players and social distancing and that an expected high level of traffic would mean course maintenance.
"The expected income levels from golf could not support this," he said.
"The decision to close our course has been a difficult one and was not taken lightly in these very difficult times.
"We understand that Golf Australia generally support the opening of courses. However, we have an obligation to make carefully considered decisions based on what we believe to be in the best interests of the club - including its staff, members, suppliers and guests and for the community as a whole.
"The club celebrates its 125th year this year. We want to see it continue for at least another 125 years and with as many of our current members, staff and guests able to enjoy it for as long as possible. We don't want to risk the health and wellbeing of these stakeholders, the course or our great club."
Fry said there was only a couple of staff members now being paid by the club.
BGC head professional David Wallis said he supported the club's decision.
"Hopefully we get through it sooner than later," he said.
The Courier spoke with representatives from RACV Goldfields, Midlands and Buninyong on Tuesday, which all said their courses were staying open for play with increased hygiene measures. Some of these measures include the removal of rakes in bunkers, only allowing one person per cart and a direction to leave the flag in while putting on the green. Clubhouses at Midlands and Buninyong are closed.
In an updated statement to clubs on Tuesday afternoon, Golf Australia continued with the stance that "the vast majority of golfers can and should continue to visit your clubs and facilities as per normal".
"By its nature, golf promotes a level of social distancing and while it is important that this is adhered to, golf is a lower risk sport than many others," part of the statement read.
Buninyong president Ron Delaland said keeping the course open allowed the club to keep employing its small group of staff.
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