Politicians from across the political spectrum are lining up to support Wales’ bid to stage the 2009 Ryder Cup.
Labour, Conservative, Liberal Democrat and Plaid Cymru Assembly Members and Members of Parliament are coming out strongly in favour of the campaign to bring golf’s top team event to Wales for the first time.
Bid chairman Tony Lewis has been inundated with letters from AMs and MPs representing constituencies in all parts of Wales. Meanwhile, Conservative AM David Melding (South Wales Central) has tabled a ‘statement of opinion’ backing the bid in the National Assembly.
The bid was launched in June by First Minister for Wales Rhodri Morgan jointly with the Welsh Development Agency, the Wales Tourist Board and The Celtic Manor Resort, the bid’s official candidate venue.
The Sports Council for Wales, the Welsh Golfing Union, the Welsh Ladies Golfing Union and Newport County Borough Council have also joined the campaign.
“Rhodri Morgan and his ministerial team pioneered the bid, but it is great to see individual AMs and MPs of all political persuasions and from across Wales coming out so strongly in favour,” said Tony Lewis. “Staging the Ryder Cup would bring enormous benefits to Wales as a whole. Our golf courses, hidden jewels in many cases, would attract more visitors as golf tourism increases, there would be a major investment in golf development and in tournaments at all levels, creating jobs and setting a much more compelling scene for inward investors.”
The twenty one AMs and MPs who have so far agreed to support the bid include Wyn Jones (Ynys Mon), the leader of Plaid Cymru. Liberal Democrat MP Richard Livsey (Brecon and Radnorshire) said: “I wholeheartedly support the proposal. I believe that a major tournament such as the Ryder Cup would generate a great deal of positive publicity and economic prosperity in the country.”
Conservative spokesman on sport Jonathan Morgan (South Wales Central) said: “I am delighted to add my support as I feel that following the success of the Rugby World Cup, it is important to keep major sporting events to the fore in Wales. As we are now fortunate to have such a delightful venue to accommodate such a major international tournament, in my view every endeavour should be made to win this bid.”