Golf club seeking cash injection to deliver plans for new £30m hotel

Plans for Wildwood Golf and Country Club.
Plans for Wildwood Golf and Country Club.

Owners of Wildwood Golf and Country Club are exploring funding options to deliver a new £30m hotel and golfing centre of excellence.

They are looking to raise equity to take their plans for an 84-room hotel, granted planning permission by Waverley Borough Council in March 2011, forward.

The club, off Horsham Road in Alfold, is majority-owned by Translloyd Developments, with managing director Phil Harrison also a stakeholder.

“We are doing this to ensure its future, rather than putting it in jeopardy,” Mr Harrison said.

“We have done the business plans and have funding offers from major banks so we are just trying to raise equity.”

He said that the timing of going to market was so that they could get the work behind the scenes done, so they had the relevant information at their fingertips when meeting potential investors.

While they are seeking potential partners to take up to a 50 per cent stake in the business, they might also consider majority owners.

The application, which is being developed in association with the Hilton hotel group, is hoped to transform the course into a southern headquarters and a centre of excellence for the Professional Golf Association, bringing new jobs and more visitors to the region.

The application includes a spa, golf academy, office, and 39 lodges which would only be built at the end of the process.

According to WBC’s website only nine registered objections were raised to plans, compared to 241 who gave their support in 2010.

Mr Harrison added: “We have got a lot of support from business, from residents, and from councillors.

“They see it as good for this area.”

If this was seven or eight years ago, raising the necessary cash would have been easy, he thought, but market conditions had made it prudent for them to look into releasing equity.

He explained: “By actually opening it up more it’s working for us because we we have people coming to the table to talk to us.”

As a former player on the European Tour who has launched two golf courses from scratch, he is happy to be involved.

He said: “Wildwood’s exciting for me because its a vision and something that will be very good for the area and I want to stay involved.”

The club currently consists of three nine-hole courses, a par-three short course, with wedding and corporate facilities.