Portland-based Newry Holdings LLC was the only bidder at an auction Wednesday to purchase equipment and other assets of Sunday River Golf Club in Newry amid a legal fight over the club’s ownership.

A lawsuit is pending in Cumberland County Superior Court to determine whether Newry Holdings or Harris Golf Inc. of Bath is the club’s rightful owner.

The award-winning, semiprivate golf course was built by Harris Golf, which has owned and operated the club since it opened in 2005. However, Newry Holdings took ownership of the property in January because it was the sole creditor on the property’s mortgage, and it said Harris Golf failed to make a required mortgage payment. Harris Golf said it was about to pay the mortgage in December but was pre-empted by Newry Holdings in violation of a forbearance agreement.

Newry Holdings held an auction Wednesday for all of the equipment and other assets associated with the golf club, including the domain name sundayrivergolfclub.com. The company’s attorney, George Marcus, said that Newry Holdings was the sole bidder, and that it purchased the assets for $700,000. Marcus has said that the auction was a necessary legal step for his client to exercise its right of ownership to those assets.

Newry Holdings filed a lawsuit in January alleging that SR Golf Holdings LLC and its parent company, Harris Golf, have refused to hand over assets such as equipment and membership fees they have collected since the property was conveyed Jan. 5 to Newry Holdings. Newry Holdings also is seeking $5.6 million in unpaid mortgage debt and property taxes plus legal fees, along with all remaining golf club assets held by SR Golf.

Harris Golf filed a counterclaim on March 7 alleging that Newry Holdings and a previous creditor, Boothbay Pool I LLC, violated a forbearance agreement that would have enabled SR Golf to use new financing to meet its financial obligations and retain ownership of the golf club.

A hearing scheduled for Tuesday to discuss the auction issue was canceled because of the snowstorm, but the court did not grant Harris Golf’s request to prohibit the auction.

Harris Golf attorney Tom Hallett said the next hearing in the case likely won’t occur for 30 to 60 days. The hearing will include arguments regarding accusations that Harris Golf stole equipment at the club last week. The company’s attorneys have argued that their client was merely reclaiming its property.

Hallett said that since the incident, Newry Holdings has parked a large truck in front of the property’s entrance to block further access.

J. Craig Anderson can be contacted at 791-6390 or at:

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