This is the UK’s first golf course winery

Tania Longmire
By Tania Longmire May 19, 2017 13:57

Mannings Heath Golf Club & Wine Estate in West Sussex has planted 38,000 vines and has become the first golf club in the UK to also be a winery.

The vines have been planted on what was nine of the club’s 36 holes – it now offers one 18-hole and one nine-hole course.

The Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Pinot Meunier grapes will be ready to make sparkling wine in 2020, with the first bottles available in 2023.

Zimbabwe-born Penny Streeter OBE is a British entrepreneur who bought the Mannings Heath golf site in 2016. Once a homeless divorcee with three children, she was awarded the OBE for ‘services to enterprise’ in 2006.

“We are recreating a South African-style wine tourism experience, where people can enjoy golf and a day out in a beautiful parkland estate, with fine wines, good food and an entertaining events programme,” she says.

The 100 year-old clubhouse at Mannings Heath Golf Club and Wine Estate features the new Benguela Brasserie and wine tasting bar, hosting wine-themed events including food pairings with chocolate and cheese, open to the public all year round.

The enhanced nine-hole layout meets the current demand for less time-invasive golf and will encourage youngsters into the game, says the estate’s general manager Adam Streeter: “Our golf pros are very excited about the plan and, from the feedback, we are convinced that the decision is the right one.”

Penny Streeter

The changes include redesigning several holes and an upgrade of the practice facilities, including a short game area.

Even though it will be a while until visitors to Mannings Heath can drink the club’s wine, they can book wine tastings and food pairings at the club, a spokesman said, as the club is keen to capitalise on its unique marketing position.

“The nine-hole, 3,314 yards Kingfisher course is a par 36, when played from the white tees, whilst the second hole has expanded from a par three to a par five. Beginners can enjoy nine holes in under two hours,” he said.

“In addition the spike bar was recently upgraded and has re-opened as a wine tasting and spike bar facility, to create additional entertaining and post-golf space.”

 

Tania Longmire
By Tania Longmire May 19, 2017 13:57
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