Major New Investment Has been announced at Sherdley Park Golf Course in St Helens after a Merseyside based leisure company takes control from the local council
Green Circle Estates Limited, which also manages Allerton Manor Golf Club and Kirkby Valley Golf Club, will oversee the day-to-day running of the golf facilities and driving range which will remain open on a ‘pay and play’ basis.
They promised to invest in refurbishment of existing clubhouse, the introduction of adventure golf, development of a new golf clubhouse with bars, restaurants and a conference/function suite, improved golf course facilities, provision of a golf academy and improved parking facilities
The council had previously tested the market twice for tenants to determine the best way to ensure the course could develop.
In October 2017, cabinet members approved recommendations for the council to progress negotiations with the preferred bidder, Green Circle Estates Limited, for a 150-year lease that both protects the provision of publicly accessible pay and play golf at the site, sets out facilities that would have to be provided, and also identifies the types of activities that would be acceptable as secondary developments.
Welcoming the news, St Helens Council’s Cabinet Member for Community Based and Focussed Services, Councillor Anthony Burns, said: “We spent time making sure we got the right partner for the course.
“I’m delighted we have now struck a good deal that ensures this great course will not only continue to be open for the St Helens public to use, but is now set on a rapid road to improvement.
“In the future, we hope this will lead to better facilities for the many users of the wider Sherdley Park as well.
“Green Circle Estates Limited has a strong track record when it comes to golf course management and you’ve only got to look at the fantastic work they’ve done at Allerton Manor Golf Club and prior to that with the development of the prestigious Formby Hall Golf Resort & Spa.
“This arrangement is an opportunity for new life to be breathed into the borough’s golf offer and I’m sure golfers locally and across the region can look forward to an improved leisure offer here in St Helens.”
Marc Smith, Operations Director for Green Circle Estates Limited said: “We are delighted that St Helens selected us to be their golf operating partner for Sherdley Park. The facilities are under par and our vision is to transform both the golf course and off-course leisure facilities and we will offer pay and play golf at affordable prices.
“Given the length of the lease at 150 years we can now significantly invest in the estate.
“We have set out a simple yet ambitious vision to create facilities that will match, if not exceed the standards of the region’s best private members golf clubs whilst safeguarding the principle of affordable pay and play golf for all.
“Green Circle Estates have a demonstrable track record in delivering significant improvements and changes to underperforming golf courses and creating family leisure destinations with outstanding food, beverage and wider leisure facilities with a focus on delivering an exceptional customer experience.”