Sergio Garcia, Paul Casey, Padraig Harrington and Colin Montgomerie have all visited Playgolf Northwick Park since August – one third of the victorious European Ryder Cup team, on a golf course one third normal size.
Colin Montgomerie said, “It’s fantastic, a great idea, the quality is here.” Harrington called it “a little oasis in an urban desert”, Garcia said it was “totally unique” and their Ryder Cup team mate Casey rated Playgolf Northwick Park’s greens as equal to those found at a Major championship.
The Middlesex golf and leisure complex – known for its six-hole ‘Majors’ course featuring tributes to famous golf holes – is celebrating its first anniversary by releasing a set of figures that will be the envy of many a golf club.
Playgolf Northwick Park is a 6-hole, £7 million family golf & leisure complex which opened in November 2005. It is owned and operated by Playgolf (Holdings) plc. The 6-hole ‘Majors’ course features full-size ‘tributes’ to great golf holes from the world’s great golf courses, including Augusta National, Royal Troon and The Belfry.
Playgolf Northwick Park has a 56-bay floodlit and heated 2-tier range, home to the Premium Golf Schools teaching academy, plus The National Short Game Centre golf practice area, the 9-hole ‘Mini Majors’ Adventure golf course, ‘The Dunes’ children’s golf course, the Phillips Golfworks custom-fitting and club repair centre, the Uniq gymnasium, the Amano cafà© bar and restaurant, and the UK’s only full-size baseball and softball batting cages.
The complex is also home to Baseball Softball UK and to the Middlesex Golf Union, and has hosted conferences and meetings for firms such as RBS, Carphone Warehouse and Barclays Bank.
“All aspects of Playgolf Northwick Park are now thriving,” says Playgolf’s Jimmy Wallace, general manager at the facility. “As we reach our first anniversary, we have got our prices right, our greens are as good as any on Tour, a huge amount of people now visit us each week, and we are becoming a key venue in the UK promotional and corporate golf market.”
“Playgolf Northwick Park has created great excitement among golfers and companies in the south of England,” continues Wallace. “People can’t believe they’re playing on greens as good as those at Augusta for just £15, within 30 minutes on the tube from central London.”
Almost 30% of visitors to Playgolf Northwick Park are under 18 years of age and almost 60% are from the local Asian community.
The £7 million family golf and leisure complex has released performance figures that show the dramatic effect the facility has had on the surrounding area:
- an average of 3,500 to 4,000 people visit Northwick Park every week;
- approximately 200,000 golf balls hit per week at the driving range;
- over 300 golfers have joined since memberships went on sale in August 2006;
- 15,000 rounds to date on the ‘Mini Majors’ Adventure Golf course;
- over 280 golf lesson packages sold since the start of October 2006
- 95 juniors have currently signed up for the Young Masters Golf programme;
- over 100,000 people have used its Amano cafà© bar / restaurant
- 300,000 balls hit in 2006 to date in its baseball and softball batting cages;
- almost 500 memberships sold in its Uniq golfer’s health & fitness club;
- an official course record of 18 (-2), and two holes in one …
Further recent developments at Playgolf Northwick Park include:
- A new photo shoot showing aerial views of the golf course in stunning condition.
- The Player’s Card – a popular new membership scheme which allows golfers unlimited golf on the ‘Majors’ course, free range balls and unrestricted use of the practice area at the club’s newly-named National Short Game Centre
- The Practice Card – to cater for the growing demand from local golfers for full access to Playgolf Northwick Park’s practice facilities, rated by many as the best in the UK
- A new standard £15 green fee, which includes a free bucket of golf balls and 30 minutes on the short game area, plus a £25 ‘Whole in One’ fee giving golfers two rounds of the 6-hole course.
- The new Premium Golf Schools Academy, with a new menu of golf lessons and skills tests, and the opening of The National Short Game Centre practice area.
2006 European Order of Merit winner Padraig Harrington gave a clinic at Playgolf Northwick Park on behalf of Wilson in September. Recent HSBC World Matchplay champion Paul Casey enthusiastically praised the golf course’s immaculate greens. Sergio Garcia spent the day there with his sponsors TaylorMade-adidas, and Ryder Cup talisman Colin Montgomerie was there on 17th October with the leading juniors from the HSBC Wee Wonders programme.
Wallace comments, “Each successive month this summer we’ve broken our previous records for green fees sold and driving range usage. The photo shoot shows that our golf course has matured and is the match of anything in the UK. We are getting increasingly busy: new customers are finding us every week and are saying good things about how very different we are from the average golf club. Our new membership schemes and teaching packages are particularly popular, and we are enjoying proving that this ambitious concept can deliver a successful business.”
Middlesex County Golf Union Secretary Andy Williams is now based at Playgolf Northwick Park, and comments, “I have been impressed with how quickly the facility has built a strong and loyal clientele, and the practice facilities at The National Short Game Centre at Playgolf Northwick Park are in my opinion the best in the county. We are encouraging all Middlesex golfers, especially club teams, to sharpen up their short games here.”
Wallace adds, “We’re ecstatic that so many of Europe’s top golfers are coming here and comparing our golf course favourably with the ones they play on Tour around the world.”
Playgolf Northwick Park www.northwickpark.com