Nicklaus poised to link up with Hoylake initiative

WIRRAL Council’s plan to establish Hoylake as the capital of England’s Golf Coast will move a step closer next week as Cabinet are set to announce the legendary Jack Nicklaus as a preferred development partner for a new world class golf resort.

On July 20, Cabinet will receive an update on the progress of the proposed Hoylake Golf Resort and will be asked to approve a recommendation to name Nicklaus Joint Venture Group (NJVG) – spearheaded by 20-times major winner Jack Nicklaus – as the council’s preferred partner on the project.

Wirral Council leader, Cllr Phil Davies, said: “The golf resort represents an opportunity to make Wirral the capital of England’s golf coast, attracting visitors from all over the world using Hoylake as the base for their golfing holidays.”

In a specially-recorded message, Jack Nicklaus said he and his team were looking forward to developing their plans further.

Jack said: “I am delighted that Wirral Council is recommending us as its partner for the golf resort in Hoylake. Hoylake has a rich history in the game of golf, being close to Royal Birkdale, Royal Lytham St. Annes, and of course Royal Liverpool right next door.

“I know this is going to be a very special project in the Hoylake area which is going to add to the legacy of golf in Wirral. We’re looking forward to it very much and we can’t wait to get started.”

The plans for the golf resort include an 18-hole championship course designed by Jack Nicklaus, a proposed top class Marriott hotel, including health and spa facilities and a clubhouse, and a ‘Links Academy’ where visitors can learn about the unique demands of playing links golf before embarking on a tour of the North West’s three championship links courses.

“Building a golf resort has long been one of the council’s objectives.” added Cllr Davies.

“Wirral already has the fastest growing visitor economy in the Liverpool City Region and we see the golf resort as a further chance for us to cement this position, building on the international profile Hoylake already has in the sport as the home of the Royal Liverpool Golf Club.

“Securing £250 million of private sector investment and increasing Wirral’s tourism economy to £450 million by 2020 are two of the pledges I made to Wirral residents last week and the golf resort proposal is key to us achieving those.”

The Open Championship at Hoylake in 2014 was attended by 202,000 people and generated more than £19 million to Wirral’s visitor economy. The Open in 2006 at Hoylake was attended by nearly 230,000 and remains a record for any Open Championship staged in England.

Birkenhead-born golfer John Singleton commented on the announcement: “This is great news for golf on the Wirral. As a young player I dreamed of competing in the Open, and to have achieved that at Hoylake was a dream come true. This latest project will help further establish Hoylake and Wirral as a major hub for golf in the region.”

Council officers are recommending to Cabinet that the Nicklaus proposal best meets the aspirations outlined in the tender and should cabinet approve then further work will commence to further develop the schemes detail.

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