IT IS a new sport that has proved popular in America – and now a group of enthusiasts wants to build a permanent Disc Golf course in Basingstoke.
The sport involves players throwing Frisbee-like discs around a course in the least number of throws, with metallic baskets used as the target for each hole.
This month, scores of disc golfers from across the country came to Down Grange to test out a temporary course laid out by the newly-formed Basingstoke Disc Golf Club.
Each player completed 36 holes throughout the day, on the course located on land by the Toby Carvery restaurant near the A30.
Mark Stangroom, of Highfield Chase, Brookvale, Basingstoke, helped to form the group a year ago after playing a Disc Golf game on a games console with his friend Rob Hamilton.
The 55-year-old said: “Most people play Frisbee when they are younger at the beach or in the park, and having something to throw into and a competitive element makes it really interesting. It has built from there.
“The problem is we do not have regular baskets, so people cannot come out and play without us being here.”
He added the group has approached Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council, which owns the land at Down Grange, about having permanent baskets there.
The game is thought to have first been played in Canada in the 1920s, when tin plates were thrown at trees and fence post.
The modern version took off in the United States in the 1970s, with the creation of a disc golf association. There are now more than 3,000 Disc Golf courses in the United States, and a handful in the United Kingdom.
Mr Stangroom’s daughter Cassie, of Worting Road, Brookvale, was one of the 28 players who took part in the competition in Basingstoke. The 22-year-old said: “It is addictive – you just want to keep playing it all the time. I have been dreaming about it.”
Sophia Waite-King, senior media relations and communications officer at Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council, said the group has met officers at the borough council, but added that other users of the land would have to be consulted before a decision is made on whether a Disc Golf course could be set up.