Stapleford Park Hotel’s golf course set to close down

The golf course at Stapleford Park Country House Hotel which has been played by some of the game’s greatest players is to close later this year.

By Nick Rennie
Monday, 9th March 2020, 6:32 pm
Pictured at Stapleford Park Hotel's golf course in the summer of 2012 for a fundraising tournament, from left, England cricketer Stuart Broad, Leicester Tigers rugby hero Geordan Murphy and former Test cricketers Mike Gatting and Chris Broad EMN-200903-182817001

The surprising news was confirmed this afternoon (Monday) by the luxury hotel, which is based around a 17th century stately home in 500 acres of attractive rural countryside.

There is no threat to the future of the hotel and its other facilities, which include a luxury spa and a two AA rosette restaurant.

But the 18-hole golf course, which was opened 20 years ago and hosted tournaments for the European Senior Tour featuring players such as Ryder Cup skippers Sam Torrance and Ian Woosnam, has not attracted enough members to be able to keep going.

Golf legend Sam Torrance tees off at Stapleford Park at the inaugural Handa Senior Masters in 2010 EMN-200903-182828001

A spokeswoman for Stapleford Park Hotel told the Melton Times: “The directors have decided to close the golf course on October 31.

“There is no single reason behind it but membership has been quite low.

“We have been able to grow the membership but not enough to make the golf course viable going forward.”

Members have been informed by letter that the course will no longer be available after October and the hotel has no immediate plans on what to use the land for when it closes.

Stapleford Park EMN-200903-180525001

The 6,944-yard par 73 championship level golf course was designed by Donald Steel and when it opened in July 2000, he said: “Of all the courses in the world, very few are free from intrusion whether it be housing or a road.

“The course at Stapleford Park is a rare exception, being in the delightfully pure setting of a Capability Brown landscape with ever changing views of Stapleford’s stately home, its lake and eight hundred acre park.

“This is classic English countryside at its very best.”

The Pavilion, which overlooks the 18th green was opened a few months later by one of Britain’s greatest current players, Justin Rose, a former US Open champion and reigning Olympic champion.

The course was given a massive boost in 2010 and 2011 when it was chosen to host the Handa Senior Masters, part of the European Senior Tour.

The Masters was a new event, funded by Japanese philanthropist Dr Haruhisa Handa and his International Sports Promotion Society (ISPS).

It brought several legends of the game to Stapleford with 5,000 spectators lining the fairways and greens over three days at the 2011 event.

But the tournament was mothballed the following year in a blow for the hotel’s course.