These are the golf clubs that have been put up for sale in the last few months

Alistair Dunsmuir
By Alistair Dunsmuir September 10, 2015 11:46

A raft of golf clubs have been put up for sale in the last few months, carrying on from 2014, in which more UK golf clubs were put on the market than in any other year in history.

The upmarket Formby Hall Golf Resort & Spa in Liverpool was put up for sale in May with a multi-million pound price tag.

Owner, Merseyside property developer Maghull Group, has not disclosed the exact asking price but the facility’s last set of accounts shows a turnover of more than £7.1 million.

The resort has hosted the European Challenge Tour and Senior and European Pro Tour events.

The golf facilities include an 18-hole parkland championship par course, nine-hole par three course, driving range and a PGA academy. The golf club has more than 500 members and includes a 26-bay floodlit weatherproof driving range and a golf shop. The resort also offers two large conference / banqueting rooms fully equipped for weddings, functions and other events. The largest room, the Ambassador, has a banquet capacity of 280 people with stunning backdrops and views over the golf course. The Diplomat Suite can accommodate up to 150 people.

Its last accounts, covering the 12 months to March 31 last year, show a pre-tax profit of almost £293,000 – up from almost £177,000 in the previous year.

Owner Maghull Group’s chief executive, Mike Hanlon, said: “At one level this has been a difficult, emotional decision, but at another level, it is commercially logical and attractive to the business moving forward.”

“This will enable us to focus on new exciting projects we have in the pipeline, such as Allerton Golf Course where we are hoping to emulate the success story we have enjoyed at Formby Hall.”

Hawkstone Park Hotel & Golf Club in Shropshire has also been put up for sale with a guide price of more than £6 million.

Hawkstone Park offers a unique and contemporary stay in approximately 400 acres of beautiful grounds that include two 18 hole championship golf courses, a purpose-built golf centre and six-hole academy golf course.

Dolgellau Golf Club in Wales has been placed up for sale with a guide price of £950,000. The venue was opened in 1910 as a private members’ club and has changed ownership only four times since, the latest owner purchasing the club in 2004. This well presented and profitable business is situated in an idyllic location within the Snowdonia National Park.

The sale includes a detached two-bedroom cottage with gardens, the clubhouse and practice facilities.

Nine-hole Oatridge Golf Club has also been put up for sale. The golf course was opened in 2000 by local golfing hero and former Ryder Cup captain Bernard Gallacher. It is set among gently rolling parkland by the village of Ecclesmachan, Broxburn and was formerly part of Binny House, an 18th century mansion.

Also included in the sale is Binny Golf Club which currently has 145 members. Offers over £390,000 are being sought.

In June Boston West Golf Club in Lincolnshire, which has a turnover of £1 million per year, was put up for sale with a guide price of £1.6 million, and earlier this year Waldringfield Golf Course near Ipswich, Suffolk was sold to a private individual from a guide price of £900,000.

Recently Pin High Golf acquired Traditions Golf Course in Surrey from Crown Golf. Originally opened in 1999, Traditions was designed by ex Ryder Cup players Peter Allis and Clive Clark. Predominantly operating as a pay and play, this high end course boasts 18 holes of challenging golf in the heartland of Surrey.

With substantial plans to renovate the bunkers, improve course drainage, upgrade machinery and bring in a whole new fleet of buggies, Traditions will shortly be receiving a transformation to bring this course back to life. Further investment will also be made into the bar and shop areas, creating a refreshed place to relax and shop for golf essentials after a round on the improved greens.

In Ireland, Waterford Castle has been sold in a multi-million pound deal.

The 310 acre island with its castle hotel, Des Smyth-designed championship golf course and 45 lodges attracted interest from virtually every continent and following a competitive bidding process the property has been sold to a purchaser with local family interests who resides abroad.

Agent GVA reports the sale of five golf clubs across the UK since in recent weeks.

Park Wood Golf Club, Kent set in 165 acres and situated in the Surrey Hills near Westerham, some 20 miles from central London, has been sold. The property was sold to Orida Corporation, which also acquired Oakland Park Golf Club, Buckinghamshire in June 2014.

Sherdons Golf Centre, Gloucestershire set in 70 acres and situated between Cheltenham and Tewkesbury, was sold to local golf professional Richard Ballard.

Waterfront Golf Club, south Yorkshire a modern 32 bay floodlit golf range, Simon Gidman designed nine-hole 3,389 yard (par 36) golf course and clubhouse was bought by local golf professional Frank Houlgate.

Weston Turville Golf Club, Buckinghamshire is situated on the outskirts of Aylesbury. Opened in 1973, the property comprises a 6,008 yard (par 69) golf course.

Taunton Vale Golf Club, Somerset comprised an 18 hole 6,238 yard (par 70) golf course, nine hole 2,004 yard (par 32) academy course and seven bay floodlit golf range. It was sold for agricultural land.

In April Waldringfield Golf Course in Suffolk was sold to a private individual from a guide price of £900,000.

And agent HMH has recently put two World of Golf driving ranges up for sale; in Croydon and Sidcup.

Earlier this year St Mellion in Cornwall and Brocket Hall in Hertfordshire were also put on the market.

Kay Griffiths, associate at another agent, Savills Oxford, said: “The golf market is continuing to strengthen in the UK, as we see a growing confidence in the industry with a number of owners expanding through the addition of facilities or further sites.”

Ben Allen, a director at GVA, added: “The golf sector remains of strong interest to investors. These recent sales follow on from the increased transactional activity we experienced in 2014. Purchasers range from overseas investors, to local entrepreneurs and existing golf / leisure operators.

“Whilst the sector has undoubtedly endured some challenging operating conditions over recent years, these sales clearly demonstrate the ongoing demand for golf clubs from a variety of purchasers – both domestic and foreign.”


Alistair Dunsmuir
By Alistair Dunsmuir September 10, 2015 11:46
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  1. ERROL FROMAN December 24, 06:49

    Please send me the name and the email address of the owners of the Formby Hall Golf Resort & Spa in Liverpool, as I would like to contact them regarding the possible sale of the golf course property. Many thanks.

    Reply to this comment
  2. Bob Braban September 10, 21:01

    At the start of the year when we predicted this level of failures there were many sceptics on some media, but near silence on this one. There are a number of factors responsible. A couple of years ago it was principally bad management and that still persists, but at the top of the list today are the fools that sold golf to Sky TV, taking it out of the pubic eye. They could not be trusted with a sweet shop in a kids playground!

    Bob Braban

    Reply to this comment
    • John October 7, 21:52

      Thank god you left Sleaford!!!!! Nobody misses you!!!

      Reply to this comment
      • Bob Braban October 23, 15:28

        Thank you John. The sentiment is mutual. I think your comment typifies (that means describes in detail) the problem at Sleaford. A good number of unpleasant people without guts that remain anonymous. You clearly belong to that category.

        Reply to this comment
        • John November 26, 21:00

          Hi Bob. The reason you left is because you didn’t get your way. Your behaviour at Sleaford was abhorrent and fell far below the standard which is expected of any member.

          Reply to this comment
    • Rob October 23, 06:03

      Thank goodness it’s been taken out of the pubic eye. How painful!!

      Reply to this comment
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