Golf club receives £15.95 million offer to buy its lease

Alistair Dunsmuir
By Alistair Dunsmuir September 7, 2021 09:05

A private members’ golf club near London has received an offer from its local council of just under £16 million to relinquish the lease for its land.

According to the Maidenhead Advertiser, Maidenhead Golf Club’s members will vote on the offer from the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead shortly.

The offer, which is a revised bid, includes a new surrender date of December 2025 – two-and-a-half years later than the previous submission.

The council hopes to build more than 2,000 homes on the golf course as part of its Borough Local Plan (BLP), and had previously come close to a full agreement for £16.25 million for the lease to be handed over within three years, but the deal fell through at the end of 2018, and a new offer was made in 2019.

The golf club’s EGM has been postponed from late August to September 9 in order to allow time for further negotiations and then to vote on them.

‘Members will now vote on two resolutions; the first will be a vote on the acceptance of the revised £15.95 million offer,’ states the paper.

Maidenhead Golf Club. Image from Facebook

‘If that does not pass, or if the original conditions which were removed in a separate, unconditional £15.95 million offer from 2019 are not contained in the revised deal, then members will vote on whether to rescind the original agreement and remain at the golf course site. The urgency of the vote is due to the BLP’s expected approval prior to the end of this year, with the golf club unable to rescind the agreement after adoption of the plan.’

The lease, reportedly, has 19 years left to run, but leader of the council Andrew Johnson had previously said that the council was prepared to use compulsory purchase orders to secure the site.

A petition has been published that calls for the golf club to reject the revised offer. “You don’t build on greenbelt in a climate emergency [yet] the Royal Borough of Windsor & Maidenhead, led by the current Conservative administration, now wants to build over this greenbelt land with 2,000 new houses and flats,” it states.

“We very much hope Maidenhead Golf Club votes to stay and continue to protect this vital area of greenspace for the benefit of all the residents of Maidenhead.”

Councillor David Coppinger, cabinet member for planning, said: “While we can’t comment on matters of commercial confidentiality, we’re working positively with the board and the club to bring the site forward for much-needed family homes, including affordable homes, along with community facilities and green public open space.”

The 125-year-old golf club, which is less than 30 miles from the centre of London, has said in the past that any money generated from a sale would be used to help it relocate.

 

Alistair Dunsmuir
By Alistair Dunsmuir September 7, 2021 09:05
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