Grangemouth golfers raise a stink over landfill

Golfers at Grangemouth Golf Course say the smell is putting them off their game
Golfers at Grangemouth Golf Course say the smell is putting them off their game

Officials from a golf club say smells from a nearby landfill site are putting people off playing at the course.

Grangemouth Golf Course is a next door neighbour of the Avondale recycling plant in Polmonthill, which has received numerous complaints about odours escaping into the surrounding communities.

SEPA had ordered Avondale to carry out several improvements of the landfill gas management system following a full review earlier this year to prevent gases escaping from the pipes which cause the odours.

A deadline was set for the end of August for the works to be done, but the smells have continued to plague the Polmont area resulting in the watchdog threatening enforcement action if a new deadline in December is not met.

A SEPA spokesman said: “A timetable was agreed for these works to be completed and the deadline for this passed on the August 31. The works undertaken, although significant, had not satisfactorily controlled odour from the site.

“Further capping works should further reduce the frequency and significance of odour events. The operator is aware of its responsibilities to control odour and SEPA will look at all options, including potential enforcement action, if the remaining works do not result in an improvement.”

The golf club’s treasurer Alan Taylor said an increasing number of members were complaining.

He added: “We have had many indications from members that they won’t be back next year because of the smells, and that includes a member of 30 years.

“I do believe Avondale is trying to alleviate the problem, but they need to know the depth of feeling about this issue. People are angry.

“We are realists and, like it or lump it, the landfill site is not going anywhere so they have to find a way to alleviate these smells, possibly with some kind of neutralising agent, to stop it from affecting the surrounding area.

“They wouldn’t like us playing golf in their yard, it would affect their business, and our main concern is for our members. We are in the process of seeking a meeting with Avondale to discuss the issue.”

Avondale director Colin Cooper said: “This is not something we are taking lightly and we have invested £1.5 million in trying to contain the problem. We want to work closely with all our neighbours, including the golf club. We have been working for several months as hard as we can and would like to have it fixed before December.”