Leeds based hotel group QHotels has signed a five year deal with John Deere Limited, worth around £500,000 in the first year, for the exclusive supply of course maintenance equipment across the group’s five golf courses.
These include Forest Pines Golf and Country Club Hotel in north Lincolnshire, Hellidon Lakes in Northamptonshire, Aldwark Manor near York, The Westerwood near Glasgow, and Telford Golf and Country Club Hotel in Shropshire.
In addition to the machinery, the deal includes regular product training at the John Deere Training Centre in Langar, with parts back-up and support provided by dealers local to the courses.
QHotels has been investing heavily in its golf courses and their facilities throughout 2007. As an example, Forest Pines has recently completed a £12.5 million refurbishment programme that has touched on every facet of the hotel and clubhouse, including a new golf shop, changing rooms, an additional 75 bedrooms, a new conference centre and extended clubhouse bar area with a new balcony overlooking the course.
Course manager David Norton has added six new John Deere machines to the Forest Pines fleet, bought from local dealer F G Adamson & Son at Swanland, East Yorkshire. These include a 3245C roughs mower, 3235C fairway mower, two 2500E hybrid greens mowers, TE electric Gator and Pro Gator utility vehicles, with the total John Deere fleet now standing at 33 machines.
“All the staff have found the technical training programme at Langar very beneficial,” says David. “The company offers a range of different courses, so we normally send two staff on each in turn. We’ve found it very useful to do refresher courses on even simple things like setting cutting units, for example.”
The club is also looking to expand the golf course to 36 holes, with two 18 hole loops replacing the current three 9 hole loops, and create a top class practice facility, which it plans to open in 2009/2010.