Golf ho­tel wel­come ad­di­tion to re­sort

Southport Visiter - - Front Page - BY JAMIE LOPEZ jamie.lopez@trin­i­tymir­ror.com @jamie_lopez1

THIS is how a new top class golf ho­tel in South­port could look.

The ho­tel could be con­structed on the va­cant Fair­ways Park and Ride site and could be­come a sim­i­lar at­trac­tion to Formby Hall Golf Re­sort & Spa.

The idea was orig­i­nally in­cluded in the South­port De­vel­op­ment Frame­work, the doc­u­ment which was com­mis­sioned to out­line how the town’s fu­ture could be shaped.

Ini­tial plans for the ho­tel at­tracted im­me­di­ate in­ter­est from de­vel­op­ers, with the plan build­ing on South­port’s po­si­tion at the cen­tre of Eng­land’s “Golf Coast”, which is home to 12 of the finest links in the coun­try.

The new ho­tel would be built ad­ja­cent to coun­cilowned South­port Golf Links and within a few min­utes’ drive of Hes­keth Golf Club and South­port Old Links Golf Club.

Both Hill­side Golf Club and Royal Birk­dale, which will host this year’s Open Cham­pi­onship, are also within a 10-minute jour­ney from the pro­posed site.

The plans also state the ho­tel could lead to fur­ther de­vel­op­ments in the area, with glamp­ing sites sug­gested as one such pos­si­bil­ity.

The doc­u­ment states “South­port Golf Links is a high qual­ity and pop­u­lar 18-hole mu­nic­i­pal golf course to the north of the town cen­tre. Ad­join­ing the coun­cil-owned golf course to the south is the coun­cil-owned former Fair­ways Park and Ride site.

“Given its close prox­im­ity to the ad­join­ing golf course, adding to the ex­ist­ing golf­ing of­fer through high qual­ity visi­tor ac­com­mo­da­tion (in­clud­ing ho­tel and self­ca­ter­ing ac­com­mo­da­tion), as­so­ci­ated park­ing and other com­ple­men­tary leisure fa­cil­i­ties to sup­port the ex­ist­ing golf course is an ob­vi­ous op­por­tu­nity.

“Land in pri­vate own­er­ship around the Marine Lake edge may also pro­vide scope for al­ter­na­tive visi­tor ac­com­mo­da­tion in the form of glamp­ing or other sim­i­lar uses.”

Cam­bridge Ward coun­cil­lor and leader of the Lib Dem Group, Sue McGuire, wel­comed the de­vel­op­ment but said that more must be done for the fu­ture of the town.

She said: “The Fair­ways Park and Ride is cur­rently an eye­sore and is a prime de­vel­op­ment site.

“Mak­ing South­port a golf re­sort makes a cer­tain amount of sense and builds on some of the best as­sets of the town how­ever I firmly be­lieve that the fu­ture of South­port should not just be about cafes, restau­rants and ho­tels.

“South­port needs the right in­fras­truc­ture and tech­nol­ogy to at­tract cut­ting edge busi­nesses and start-ups to the town.”

A spokesman for Sefton Coun­cil said: “The South­port De­vel­op­ment Frame­work is an over-arch­ing plan that high­lights po­ten­tial de­vel­op­ment op­por­tu­ni­ties, giv­ing ex­am­ples of the types of ac­tiv­ity that could take place at each of the des­ig­nated sites.

“Through our work with con­sul­tants, Nexus, we be­lieve that the Park and Ride site is a key de­vel­op­ment op­por­tu­nity within South­port.

“Given the bor­ough’s golf­ing tra­di­tion, its prox­im­ity to the lo­cal course and the need for more qual­ity ho­tels in the town, it was con­cluded that a themed ho­tel would be well suited.

“Mov­ing for­ward, we will be us­ing the frame­work to progress tar­geted con­ver­sa­tions with po­ten­tial de­vel­op­ers and in­vestors. This is not an overnight process but im­por­tantly it lets ev­ery­one know that Sefton is open for busi­ness.”

A new golf-themed ho­tel is wel­comed by Cllr Sue McGuire, in­set left

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