EXCLUSIVE: Bolton down to last TWO in race to host the Ryder Cup in 2031 – though the Lancashire site at Hulton Park is awaiting planning permission and faces rival a bid from the London club
- Sportsmail reported in October that an ambitious £250m plan had been hatched
- Bolton is down to the final two in contention to host the Ryder Cup in 2031
- The site is facing local opposition as well as a rival bid from the London Club
Bolton is down to the final two to host the Ryder Cup — with only local opposition and a rival bid from the London Club standing in its way.
In October, Sportsmail reported that an ambitious £250million plan had been hatched to bring one of the world’s major sporting events to the Lancashire town in 2031.
At the time, it was up against the Belfry and the London Club in Kent for the biennial tournament between Europe and the United States, but the Warwickshire venue is understood to have pulled out of the race, leaving a straight North versus South battle.
Bolton is down to the last two venues in the race to host the Ryder Cup in 2031
There is a £250m plan in place for Hulton Hall in Bolton, to be converted into a golf course
However, proposals to transform Lancashire’s 800-acre Hulton Park from farmland into a landmark Championship site are yet to receive planning permission. And next week the town’s council will decide its fate. Some residents say the project, which developers Peel L&P claim will bring in £1.6billion of investment and create 1,000 jobs and apprenticeships, would result in the destruction of ‘ancient hedgerows and trees’ and would endanger wildlife.
They also say that not enough of the 1,000 houses included in the scheme will represent affordable housing, claim there is ‘no demand for a new golf course’ and say the farms on the site are needed more than ever after Brexit.
Nonetheless, those behind the project have been buoyed by the Belfry’s dropout and the Government’s Levelling Up White Paper, issued last week, in which it confirmed it had commissioned UK Sport to ‘lead feasibility work on the prospect of bringing major sporting events to the UK’.
It added: ‘This work will focus on opportunities outside London, supporting and underpinning the ambition to level up the UK.’
The site is facing local opposition as well as competition from a bid by the London Club
Sportsmail’s Mike Keegan manages to slice one out of bounds at the Hulton Hall estate
Richard Knight, from Peel L&P, says a Bolton Ryder Cup is ‘now a very realistic and exciting prospect’.
‘We hope that the council will seize this once-in-a-generation opportunity and support our efforts to bring this prestigious event — and all the benefits that flow from it — to Bolton,’ he added.
‘Culture, heritage, sport and reducing health inequalities are all things the Government recognises are needed in helping to level up the country and Hulton Park can deliver in all these areas with a focus on net zero, biodiversity, environmental enhancements and inclusivity too.
‘Bringing the Ryder Cup to Bolton would help to unlock all of these opportunities and we hope people will see the potential to create something very special here that would bring huge benefits.’
The DP World Tour will make a decision on the venue for 2031 in July.