Global Edition

World-class academy at The De Vere Belfry

12.10am 2nd May 2003 - Course Development

The PGA National Golf Academy will provide a unique combination of services and amenities and will be opened next week to coincide with The De Vere Belfry’s hosting of the Benson & Hedges International Open.

Mike Maloney, executive director of The De Vere Belfry, commented, “The PGA National Golf Academy has been designed to help golfers of all levels develop their game. This new facility enables golfers to select from a wide range of offerings that can also be part of a teaching programme if required. We are delighted that the Academy has the full approval of the PGA as this demonstrates the quality of service that will be on offer.”

Sandy Jones, chief executive of the PGA, said, “The PGA is delighted by this new development which further enhances The De Vere Belfry’s position as the European Centre of Excellence for golf. We at the PGA have enjoyed a wonderful relationship with the De Vere Group for almost 30 years and congratulate them on their vision and commitment in creating this wonderful new facility.”

The new £1.2 million world-class golf academy provides a full range of services from comprehensive teaching programmes, a custom fit centre using cutting edge technology, a fabulous driving range and short game area, an 18-hole putting green replicating the Brabazon course, plus the latest in golf simulation.

The Driving Range

The new range has 34 bays and an outfield that replicates the experience of hitting a golf ball on a golf course. Each bay has its own Strokesaver and golfers will be provided with feedback sheets to aid good practice. Within the bays are a combination of power tees, sloping lies, mirrors to aid practice and video bays allowing golfers to perfect their golf swings using Royle Golf’s patented system.

The National Custom Fit Centre

The National Custom Fit Centre is the first facility to house Taylor Made, Callaway, Ping and Titleist individual custom fitting centres under one roof. In addition to this, the technology used is the best available and cannot be found anywhere else in Europe.

The staff have been trained by the relevant manufacturers to provide an unrivalled service. Iron sets, woods, wedges and putters will be “custom fit”, and all will be sold at extremely competitive prices. The facility will be open to all golfers as well as providing a key service to tour professionals.

“TaylorMade is very excited about the cutting edge custom fitting service that we can now offer at the De Vere Belfry. It is so important for golfers to be playing equipment with the correct spec – the R500 Driver and RAC Irons provide a club for every golfer, and this centre will ensure that they tee off with the exact clubs their game requires,” commented Michael Newland, Marketing Manager Region West, TaylorMade adidas Golf.

The PGA National Teaching Academy

The De Vere Belfry’s PGA-qualified professionals is fully equipped with the latest knowledge and technology to help golfers improve their swing. In addition, the short game area has been designed to enable the professionals to teach chipping and bunker play from every possible angle or lie. The teaching professionals will also be using the extensive array of facilities at The De Vere Belfry.

Golf Simulator

The visiotic golf simulator allows golfers to play golf courses from around the world, or experience driving the 10th or carrying the lake on the 18th before doing it for real on the world-famous Brabazon course. A great practice aid, the simulator lets golfers work out how far their clubs will hit the ball in all conditions and allows them to practice hitting fade or draw with instant feedback on performance.

Brabazon Putting Challenge

Modelled on the Brabazon, this 18-hole, 1,000-feet, par 54 putting course winds its way through shrubs and trees, up and over undulations and around hazards. Golfers will be faced with a mixture of easy par 2`s, tempting but treacherous par 3`s, and nightmarish par 4`s, including the famous 10th and 18th holes, and the challenge will be to beat the course record.

Commenting on the new Academy, Paul Dermody, chief executive of De Vere Group Plc, said, “The PGA National Golf Academy at The De Vere Belfry is the first of its kind in Europe. De Vere’s investment follows the huge success of The 34th Ryder Cup Matches last September, and demonstrates the group’s ongoing commitment to help develop the game of golf.”

De Vere recently announced a partnership agreement with the PGA and has just launched a new golf website –

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