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‘It’s just devastating’: Stanhope Golf and Country Club clubhouse gutted by fire

CHARLOTTETOWN, P.E.I. — Merlin Affleck stated he felt helpless watching the clubhouse at Stanhope Golf and Nation Membership burn to the bottom on Sept. 24.

The pinnacle professional on the course obtained two telephone calls from workers round 11 a.m. saying the constructing was burning.

“I booted it down there,’’ Affleck stated in an interview with SaltWire Community on Sept. 26. “It was fairly a visit down with getting round downed bushes and energy strains however after I acquired there the hearth was fairly superior.’’

Wind gusts from post-tropical storm Fiona have been nonetheless highly effective as firefighters arrived.

“We spent fairly a bit of cash in that clubhouse. We gave it a brand new car parking zone final 12 months and to see how good the whole lot was simply out of the blue … to observe it burn yesterday was powerful,’’ Affleck stated, his voice cracking.

Affleck, who has been with the course since 1980, stated by the point the hearth division arrived, there was no saving the clubhouse, even when firefighters had been capable of battle the blaze.

“It is a actual loss for the group. It’s a group membership. It’s simply devastating. I can’t describe it.’’

“It’s simply devastating. I can’t describe it.’

Merlin Affleck, head professional

As for the golf course itself, Affleck stated the harm is critical sufficient that he thinks the course will shut for the rest of the season.

“This was Juan and Dorian put collectively,’’ Affleck stated, referring to the storms that hit P.E.I. in 2003 and 2019, respectively. “I’d say we’ve misplaced not less than 1,000 bushes over the entire golf course. We planted lots of bushes in 1992 and they’re all gone.’’

Affleck stated he took a drive across the course on Sept. 24 and noticed the sixteenth and thirteenth fairways utterly submerged. The water had dried off by Sept. 25.

“We’ve got in depth, in depth work to do. The skin crew, that is going to be powerful on them. They’ll be going from slicing grass to slicing down and hauling away tree limbs. I can’t describe the quantity of harm on the market.’’

Affleck does promise the clubhouse shall be rebuilt and the course will open in 2023.

“We’ll work with the insurance coverage firm and they’ll rebuild. Unsure if it will likely be in the identical spot however they’ll rebuild. As for subsequent 12 months, I’ll put a trailer within the car parking zone if I’ve to.’’

Dave Stewart is a reporter with the SaltWire Community in Prince Edward Island. He might be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter @DveStewart

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