One of Chesterfield’s most successful sporting facilities has been officially dedicated to the people of the town following a special naming ceremony.
The 18-hole course at Tapton Park Golf Course has become the Markham Course in honour of local benefactor Charles Paxton Markham.
Tapton House was the home of the famous Markham Family from 1873 until 1925 when Charles bequeathed the 200 acre Tapton Estate to the people of Chesterfield and it first opened as a golf course in 1934.
Two descendents of the locally famous Markham family, John Markham, and his wife Elizabeth, travelled all the way from Canada to Chesterfield to be part of the course naming event. John, the grand nephew of Charles Paxton Markham said, “We are extremely honoured by the naming of the course to the Markham Course. My family hold Chesterfield in great regard.”
A commemorative flagpole and plaque have been installed at the course to mark this special event and affirm the connection between the course and the history of Chesterfield.
It follows a celebration event to open new facilities at the course after a £170,000 investment by operating company Sheffield International Venues (SIV). As part of a ten-week refurbishment programme, improvements include a redeveloped function room and upgrades to the clubhouse, locker room and other course facilities.
Lorenzo Clark, director of operations for SIV, said, “Naming the course after Charles Markham will ensure that the people of Chesterfield continue to enjoy and benefit from the fantastic course for many years to come. The Markham family has a great heritage in this town so it is fitting that their name should be central to any future development and success.
“The set up at Tapton, particularly the junior section continues to go from strength to strength. Our aim now is to build on these great foundations to encourage even more local people to get into golf and ensure that SIV has the strongest portfolio for golf development of any operating company in the county by 2012.”
Tapton Park Golf Course is home to the successful Tapton Park Golf Club, which won the North East Derbyshire Club of the Year Award 2006, was awarded the Junior Golfmark Award 2006 and Golfmark with High Achiever Status in 2008 and named Golfmark Club of the Year in the same year.
Tapton Club Juniors Danielle Kay and Robyn Furze both won Volunteer of the Year for their respective age groups at the 2009 England Golf Partnership Volunteer Awards.
SIV operates 14 sport and entertainment facilities in Sheffield including three other golf courses – Beauchief Golf Course, Birley Wood Golf Course and Tinsley Park Golf Course, which together with Tapton deliver 200,000 rounds per year.
Sheffield International Venues www.sheffieldgolf.co.uk