THE future of Stocksfield Golf Club looks uncertain after its plans to build houses on land near the course were rejected.

The club submitted the application for outline planning permission to build houses east of the course, in the hope that the land could be sold to pay off the club’s debts.

The application received 69 supporting comments from residents and 21 objections.

But at Tuesday’s meeting of Tynedale Local Area Council, councillors unanimously agreed to support officers’ recommendations to refuse the application.

Councillors turned it down on the grounds that there were no special circumstances to allow building on greenbelt land.

Coun. Anne Dale, who represents Stocksfield, spoke in support of the application.

She said: “I understand the concerns of both sides. I have seen the golf club develop into a community asset for Stocksfield and the wider community.

“The club has not had an easy time over the last few years. It needs some financial support to move forward, or it will close.”

The club’s owner, Jennifer Page, also spoke at the meeting.

She said: “It would only take one unfortunate event to push us over our overdraft limit and the bank will shut us down.

“Residents want to see more community facilities not less.

“The future of Stocksfield Golf Club is in your hands today. This is a cause worth fighting for.”

However, councillors said financial issues did not amount to special circumstances.

Coun. Nick Oliver said: “It would be great to be able to support this.

“But I haven’t heard any good planning reasons.

“We’re obligated to look at this on planning reasons.”