Tim Forrester Muir has owned the golf course at Forrester Park, Maldon, for many decades and it has been in the family since his grandmother bought the land in 1932. Tim‘s father, who had been stationed in India for the early part of his career, returned after Partition and developed a rustic nine hole course.
The course opened in 1968, using very basic materials including bamboo shafts for flag sticks and a Quality Street tin as an honesty box to collect green fees. It was very homespun, but lots of fun.
Sadly his father died in 1972 and Tim’s mother and he decided to keep the course on and make a go of it. He needed some personal expertise, so trained as a greenkeeper at the Warren Golf Club not many miles away. In 1975 he returned to Forrester Park and made the family home into the first clubhouse.
In the 1980’s the neighbouring farm was purchased which allowed the Forresters to add another nine holes. Play started on the new 18 hole course late on in 1989, with Mickey Walker the well-known PGA professional and former ladies European Tour player opened the course in early 1990.
It has always been vital for the family that they provide as much fun and entertainment as possible at the golf course, so two tennis courts were added in 1984, with two more in 1991. This gave a diverse leisure opportunity to the local people and the club thrived with a great social atmosphere.
In 1991, the new clubhouse was built and scores of trees planted. The new south-facing patio was perfect for weddings and lots of similar functions followed after the restaurant was opened.
The course, which is on clay, once provided the opportunity for Tim’s father to manufacture bricks on a commercial basis long before it was established as a golf course. A substantial drainage programme was carried out in 1999, ensuring that the club can be used for play throughout the year.
To continue to diversify, Tim oversaw the building of a beautiful and charming indoor swimming pool close to the clubhouse. This is currently leased out to a separate entity, but provides useful revenue for the golf business; further expansion in 2014 included the introduction of three magnificent croquet lawns.
The business today is highly successful and is a very desirable venue for weddings and other functions. Green fees for 18 holes are in the region of £30, depending on exactly when you play, and full membership is £1099 in your first year, with those rejoining saving a further £100. For those wishing to try the club before committing, you can become a full seven day member with no further green fees to pay for just £175 for two months. This is then deducted from the price of full membership should you decide to join.
This has been extremely successful, as it is a genuine offer allowing golfers to sample the course and social opportunity without committing fully initially. There are also flexible memberships and various payment options and even a commuter membership for those just wishing to play in the evenings. All of these offers have been carefully introduced so that golfers pay a fair price for their access to the course. It is not surprising that the club is very busy.
The club today is beautifully run, with a thriving membership eager to take advantage of the wonderful social activities that are available alongside the golf and leisure options. Tim and his wife have decided that a new owner is now needed for Forrester Park, and so have appointed HMH to find a buyer.
Tom Marriott, from HMH spoke to Golf Features:
“Forrester Park is a unique business opportunity and a beautiful golf course. It has been extremely well maintained throughout the years and is presented in beautiful order throughout. It is a very friendly and welcoming club and we have already attracted strong interest from a number of interested parties.“
Tim Forrester Muir added:
“In many ways, we will be sad to give up running the business. It has been our life for the last 40 plus years and we have had a wonderful time, and have met a host of fascinating and friendly people. It is now time for my wife and I to sit on the other side of the counter and enjoy golf and the club as consumers.”
For further details on Forrester Park, please visit the website: https://forrester-park.co.uk/
For more details on the sale of Forrester Park, please contact Tom Marriott at HMH on: 07900 672045