Jailed golf club owner angry with council
The owner of Waterstock Golf Club in Oxfordshire has launched an attack on his local council for dumping waste without securing planning permission – something he was jailed for in 2012.
Ron Wyatt was jailed for six months, along with his brother, who was jailed for four, over a dispute with Oxfordshire City Council.
They used more than 56,000 cubic metres of waste material from the construction of M40 services to carry out landscaping work at the club, but the council said they did not obtain the correct permission. A court order then demanded that they remove waste from land next to the club, which they failed to comply with and were therefore jailed.
Using waste to redevelop golf courses has been a growing trend in recent years – as clubs are often paid large amounts of money to take the soil.
Recently Oxfordshire City Council moved soil from the site of a new leisure centre to fill in a ball game facility by an outside pool, and did this, according to the Oxford Mail, without applying for planning permission.
Ron Wyatt, 71, who was released from prison after three months in March last year, said: “Moving the soil, that caught my eye.
“That material is classed as waste as soon as it leaves the site. No planning application has been asked for.
“That was the reason we fell foul of the county council back in 1997.
“We put some soil on our golf course in 1997 and we had to take it all off.
“It is wrong that they should be able to do what they have done without planning permission.
“It said that the idea was to make a picnic area which is highly commendable. I am for it.
“But you have to make sure the material is clean.
“Our concern is that there should be some kind of equality in how they deal with these matters.”
Louisa Dean, spokeswoman for Oxford City Council, told the Oxford Mail: “We are aware of the planning regulations involving the removal of soil from one site to another.
“The various departments in the council have been in discussion to ensure that the appropriate permissions are in place.
“A retrospective planning application will be submitted.”