Jun 15th, 2016
Royal Norwich GC sells up
And merges with Weston Park
Words: John Dean
Royal Norwich Golf Club’s sale of its course so that 1,000 properties can be built on it is set to go ahead as planning permission has now been granted.
The historic golf club, one of only 16 in England to have been granted its royal title by Queen Victoria, is now set to relocate and merge with Weston Park Golf Club, based seven miles away.
The money from the sale of the land will be used to buy Weston Park and redevelop its 18-hole course and clubhouse to accommodate the new members. More than 80 percent of Royal Norwich’s members approved this move two years ago.
“Royal Norwich’s relocation to Weston Park looks certain to happen after permission has been granted to build 1,000 new homes on the existing Hellesdon site by Broadland District Council,” said the club’s communication manager Vicki Hall.
“This completes the most significant stage in the relocation process so far, meaning Royal Norwich will start their journey towards building their exciting new facilities for the future, at the Weston Park site.
“Now that permission has been granted work can be started on Weston Park subject to legal agreements being finalised. Until the new facility opens, Royal Norwich will carry on playing 18 holes at the current site.”
Phil Grice, general manager of Royal Norwich, added: “This is an incredibly historic moment for Royal Norwich Golf Club. Our staff, members and committee have worked tirelessly for over a decade to get us to this point. Whilst members are sad that we will be moving, there is also a real excitement in the air as our vision now will become a reality. It is now over to the various design teams to create a course and facilities that are seen as a new benchmark in golf. The Weston Park site is quite spectacular and with the planned investment into the course and infrastructure the future now looks bright for Royal Norwich.”
Detailed design work is being undertaken by European Golf Design’s Ross McMurray. Fieldon & Mawson Architects together with Richard Utting of Richard Utting Associates are working on the clubhouse design and additional facilities for golfers and their families.
One of Royal Norwich’s members, Arthur Havers, won the Open Championship in 1923. It was also where the only two consecutive holes in one were ever shot in a professional tournament. John Hudson, a 25 year old pro, holed out on the 11th and 12th (195 yards and 311 yards, respectively) at the Martini Tournament.