Mar 2nd, 2016
Wentworth announces upgrades to West Course
Plus improvements across Club facilities
Words: John Dean
Wentworth Club has announced updates to the upcoming renovations and works across the famous West Course, Tennis & Health Club and Clubhouse.
Wentworth has confirmed that these improvements will form just part of the commitment to invest £20 million by December 2018 with the vision of making Wentworth Club the world’s premier private golf and country club - in other words, no riff raff.
Chief Executive Stephen Gibson said, “We are delighted to share the first of our exciting development plans for Wentworth Club. The West Course was last updated in 2009 and we are very much looking forward to working with Ernie Els Design to make further enhancements to this iconic course.”
Starting in June 2016, after this year’s BMW PGA Championship, extensive work will begin on the West Course. The project will be led by Ernie Els, resident on the Wentworth Estate and winner of Golf Designer of the Year at the World Golf Awards 2015.
Els said, “I am delighted to be continuing my 25 year relationship with the West Course at the Wentworth Club and am extremely excited to be involved in implementing the renovations, which we believe will considerably enhance the reputation and playability of the West Course. These changes will include the remodelling of several greens to the benefit of all levels of player.”
Improvement works will include the re-seeding of all 18 greens with creeping bent grass and the full redesign of the 8th, 11th, 14th, 15th and 16th greens.
Across the course, bunkers will be reduced in number (from 88 to 65), height and depth to increase playability, while the 3rd, 10th and 18th tees will be rebuilt and modernised.
Hang on a minute. Wasn’t it Ernie’s idea to change the bunkering in the first place? We remember walking the course with Paul Casey when the changes had been made, and he was highly critical of the work, especially the bunkering. So is Wentworth employing Ernie to undo the changes he made in the first place?
There will be fairway drainage improvement work across eight holes, the irrigation system will also be upgraded and the roadway network resurfaced throughout.
In a return to Harry Colt’s traditional vision for the West Course, heath and woodland enhancement work will take place. There will also be a comprehensive planting scheme, adding native plants and trees across the course.
Wentworth Club’s Director of Golf Courses & Grounds Kenny Mackay said, “As host of the BMW PGA Championship, the West Course plays a vital role in the golfing calendar and, working with Ernie Els Design, our ambition is to cement its place as a world class course for both tournaments and Club members alike.”
Beyond the West Course, the Club will be making extensive improvements to the tennis & health and Clubhouse facilities. They are also discussing renovations to the East and Edinburgh golf courses with other world leading golf course designers and will share their names as soon as contracts are signed.
Tennis & Health Club
Wentworth Club will be investing significantly in the modernisation and refurbishment of all of the tennis, fitness and spa facilities.
The Clubhouse interior will be totally redesigned by industry leading interior architect and design company, Thorp Design. Work starts in Autumn 2016 and continues into 2017. The design plans will be shared both with members and more publicly in the coming weeks.
So it’s all change, and nothing is going to stop them now.
If you are bored with all the goings on at Wentworth then click here to read something altogether more agreeable. We've been looking into the work of James Braid, and he had nothing to do with Wentworth.