New Ramside course breaks ground


Sean Dudley

Ramside Hall, a golf resort in County Durham in the north-east of England, is starting work on a £15m development that includes an eighteen hole golf course, spa, leisure centre and hotel expansion. 

The new project is being designed by English architect Jonathan Gaunt, who also built the original 27 holes at Ramside, which opened in 1996. The resort is situated on the outskirts of Durham city and is owned by Ramside Estates, the largest privately owned hospitality group in North East England.

Ramside Hall Estates director John Adamson said: “We are pressing ahead with plans to give County Durham a first-class golf resort that it can be proud of. Ramside is already considered among the finest golf destinations in the North of England and by expanding the hotel and creating a new course we are polishing our golfing diamond.”

To create the new course Gaunt will revamp four of the existing Cathedral course holes, retire five existing holes, and add 14 new holes on former agricultural land near the villages of Pittington and Belmont.

Construction begins this month. Gaunt said the course will measure more than 7,200 yards from the back tees, with four par fives, five par threes and nine par fours.

Gaunt added: “This site is special. It is a mature and established piece of land with lots of elevation changes, a sense of rural remoteness and natural water features including becks and streams. From the tenth tee there is a view of Durham’s iconic cathedral, one of the greatest religious buildings in the world.”

The hotel expansion will begin late in 2012, with 48 new bedrooms, increasing the bed stock to 130. The development includes 34 executive houses bordering the golf course. The project is expected to be completed by September 2013 when Ramside Estates celebrates its fiftieth anniversary.