Issue - decisions
Hoylake Golf Resort
Councillor Pat Hackett introduced a report from the Strategic Director – Regeneration and Environment, requesting that Members note the significant progress made with regard to taking forward the Hoylake Golf Resort project, to authorise the announcement of the Nicklaus Joint Venture Group (NJVG) as the Council’s Preferred Development Partner on a conditional basis. This action would precede the commencement of the stand still period prior to the signing of a formal development agreement. With this security the development partner could finalise their financial arrangements, make further progress on designing the golf resort and make preparations for the submission of a planning application. Closure of the Competitive Dialogue phase of the project would also allow a period of extensive public consultation to commence.
Councillor Pat Hackett stated that since 2004 this had been an aspiration of the Council which it needed to pursue and bring to fruition. It was a great vision for a great project.
Councillor Phil Davies expressed his delight that somebody of Jack Nicklaus’ stature would help to put Hoylake and Wirral on the map even more so than it was already. The project would contribute to some of the pledges in the Wirral Plan, including ‘greater job opportunities’ and a ‘vibrant tourism economy’. The international golf links academy, unique in England, would be a tremendous boon to the economy. The next stage would be for an extensive public consultation exercise prior to the formal planning consultation process. An ambition of the Council was to create a tourism offer second to none.
Councillor Tony Smith expressed his support and was pleased to see that the bidder had the vision to support local schools providing work experience and apprenticeships in the hotel, golf and leisure industry.
The second part of the report set out further financial details and was exempt under paragraph 3, Schedule 12A of the Local Government Act 1972 due to the commercial sensitivities of that information.
RESOLVED: That -
(1) Cabinet agrees to appoint the Nicklaus Joint Venture Group as the Council’s preferred development partner and, that upon serving the necessary notices and standstill period, to formally close the Competitive Dialogue process.
(2) Cabinet agrees to the principles set out in the report and approves further discussions as detailed in the exempt appendix.