Golf club given approval to build several houses

Alistair Dunsmuir
By Alistair Dunsmuir August 18, 2023 10:39

Plans to build about 50 houses on Sonning Golf Club in Berkshire’s driving range have been approved by Wokingham Borough Council.

A planning proposal submitted at the end of last year stated that the club wanted to build 54 properties, 22 of which would be affordable.

The plan suggests the housing mix be made up of six one-bedroom homes, as well as 16 two-bedroom, three-bedroom and four-bedroom plus properties.

Construction of the properties will take place at the site of the club’s existing driving range, which would be replaced by new driving nets, as well as the conversion of the west wing to provide an indoor facility comprising a practice simulator.

As the current practice range is outside, the club suggests it can be “unattractive” in bad weather, as well as being unusable after dark.

Image from Twitter / X

The simulator will allow target practice at a range of distances, which is described as a “significant benefit” in comparison to existing driving range.

Sonning Golf Club states: “[It] allows the golfer to track the trajectory of the struck ball, its spin and distance, all essential data to improve a golfer’s skill. Moreover, the ability to know how far each golf club hits a ball is a fundamental benefit to practice and teaching.”

These three simulators and six driving nets, which would be available free of charge for golfers to hit their own balls, would increase the capacity of the current practice areas.

Other planned changes include the extension of the club car park, the relocation of the 18th green, the addition of an extended practice putting green and a new short-game chipping area.

Tom Rumble from Woolf Bond Planning said: “The proposal represents a high quality but sensitive scheme that respects the character of the site and the surrounding area in every respect.”

Councillors voted to approve the plans by four to three, adding conditions that the club put up netting and build a footpath to improve pedestrian access.

Just a few days ago developers started building 14 detached four and five-bedroom homes on land by Deane Golf Club in Bolton.


Alistair Dunsmuir
By Alistair Dunsmuir August 18, 2023 10:39
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