The presence of rare protected newts at Ramside Hall Hotel and Golf Club in County Durham has not stopped progress at its new £15m golf, hotel and leisure development planned to open in 2014.
Parent company Ramside Estates Ltd, owners of three distinctive country hotels in County Durham, is currently building the only new golf course under construction in Northern England at the present time.
Rumours have circulated around the North East golf scene that the development had been suspended due to the presence of greater crested newts – one of the most protected amphibians in the UK – at several sites on and around the golf course.
John Adamson, director of Ramside Estates Ltd, said: “There is no truth in rumours currently doing the rounds that our new championship golf course and leisure development has been suspended due to the presence of Greater Crested Newts at Ramside. Quite the opposite, we are now seeding the tees, greens and fairways on the course and have almost completed the shaping of the entire layout.
“We are looking forward to opening the best new golf course in Northern England in 2014 as part of a £15m revamp of the hotel, golf club, leisure and conferencing facilities at Ramside.”
Working in partnership to preserve sensitive wildlife habitats
Ramside Hall Hotel and Golf Club has been working in partnership with Natural England to preserve rare habitats for greater crested newts on the Ramside estate.
Newt populations have been identified at several sites close to and bordering the existing golf course and are being protected by boundary fencing erected following consultations and guidance from Natural England.
John Adamson, said: “The construction of the golf course is continuing well and has benefited from the recent good weather.
“The development is entirely sympathetic to the environment – including eco systems and wildlife habitats – close and to and around the area in which it is being built. Our golf course architect Jonathan Gaunt is one of the leading experts in creating sustainable golf course developments that nurture and support the eco-systems and habitat of wildlife and bird life on site.”
The new Cathedral Course, designed by Gaunt Golf Design, is the centrepiece of a £15m golf and leisure development undertaken by Ramside Estates Ltd, a family run hospitality company, which celebrates the 50th anniversary of the opening of Ramside Hall Hotel in 2014.
The development includes a 7,200 yard 18-hole Championship golf course, built on former farmland between Belmont and Pittington, with views down on to Durham Cathedral, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
In addition, Ramside Estates Ltd will open a Health Club, gymnasium, 25-metre swimming pool and spa with four hydrotherapy pools, 10 treatment rooms and six heat rooms.
There will also be an Asian restaurant, hair and beauty salon, 48 additional hotel bedrooms and 34 executive residential homes built on site.
Ramside Hall Hotel and Golf Club www.ramsidehallhotel.co.uk
Gaunt Golf Design www.gaunt-golf-design.com