Public consultation opens regarding future of two city golf courses

Leeds City Council wishes to seek the views of residents regarding a proposal to close Gotts Park and Middleton Park golf courses.

Work has previously been undertaken by the council and representatives of each club to find a suitable business case to keep both courses open, which are currently making a combined loss of £217,000 per year. In January 2013, the council deferred a previous decision to close both courses so further options could be explored to see if a new way of delivering the service could be found.

The consultation document will be available to download from Friday 6th June 2014 to 4th July 2014 and can also be viewed at both golf course locations.

If the proposals to close both golf courses are given the go-ahead, the council will aim to establish Leeds’ first Arboretum at Middleton Park and the creation of the Benjamin Gotts Country Park which will provide 80 hectares of open space for public use. A further consultation on both of these proposals will be undertaken if a decision to close Middleton Park and Gotts Park golf courses is agreed.

Leeds City Council currently manages two other golf course sites, one at Roundhay Park and the other at Temple Newsam.

Councillor Mark Dobson, Leeds City Council’s executive member for the environment said:

"A public consultation has now opened on the council’s proposal to close both Middleton Park and Gotts Park golf courses and I would urge anyone who wishes to have their voice heard to please do so before the deadline.

"This has not been an easy decision to put forward. I would like to assure people it would not have been considered if we were not confident there was other accessible and affordable provision available in both local areas for people to continue playing golf.

"We have been working with both clubs to see if a suitable business case could be found to deliver this service, and as yet these investigations have not been successful. Given the significant challenges that the council faces and the combined loss of both golf courses which currently totals £217,000 per year, it is simply unstainable and impossible for us to continue as before."

Notes to editors:

You can feedback your views in the following ways: Fill in the form starting on page 8 and send it to Gotts Park Golf Course Review and / or Middleton Park Golf Course Review, Parks and Countryside, Farnley Hall, Hall Lane, Leeds LS12 5HA or fill in the form starting on page 8 and e-mail us at parks.golf@leeds.gov.uk

For media enquiries, please contact;

Colin Dickinson, Leeds City Council press office (0113) 39 51578

Email: colin.dickinson@leeds.gov.uk