Serco Liability To Cover Beacon Park Golf Course Operating Losses

In a binding agreement by Article No: 3b. “To the Corporate & Environmental Overview & Scrutiny Committee Members Update 2012/13 Issue: 4, an official policy and legal document.

“Article of: Assistant Director Community Services Relevant Managing Director: Managing Director (People and Places) Relevant Portfolio Holder: Councillor D Sudworth

Contact for further information: Mr John Nelson”, in which the following was agreed”.

2. Purpose Of Article; To update Members of the progress towards finalising an agreement of the management of the Beacon Park Golf Course. As you will recall, DCT Leisure gave notice and relinquished their lease for the management of Beacon Park Golf Course on 31st December 2011. Following reports to Cabinet (15th November 2011) and Council (14th December 2011) interim arrangements were put in place with West Lancashire Community Leisure Trust and the trust partners Serco Leisure Operating Limited to undertake temporary arrangement for the management of the golf course. Delegation was approved by Cabinet and Council for the Assistant Director Community Services, in consultation with the Leader and relevant portfolio holder, to enter into and conclude all arrangements for the long-term management arrangements for the golf course.

3. As you will recall, included in the Article were references to a) “The trust partners having examined the previous financial years and membership records of the golf course; b) that information provided by DCT confirmed that the golf course had been losing money during the past two years; c) that an assessment undertaken by Serco indicated that the finance position of the golf course would improve under a trust arrangement, providing savings for rates (NNDR) and improvement towards VAT payments; d) that the underlying trend of reduced memberships would need to be reversed together with improvement across casual income lines in order to ensure long term viability;

e) that the arrangements previously negotiated by DCT for the land drainage work with Oaklands leisure [Oakland Golf and Leisure Ltd] provided an opportunity to improve facilities, retain or increase future membership and increase income; f) that Serco have now concluded their discussions with Oaklands Leisure [Oakland Golf and Leisure Ltd] and have been able to project a positive financial position in future years; g) that the initial years of the improvement works will require Serco to cover operating losses; h) that Serco have proposed a surplus income share arrangement based on 1/3rds (thirds) distributed equally to West Lancashire Borough Council, West Lancashire Community Leisure Trust and Serco Leisure Operating Limited;

i) the proposal includes investment into the golf course and facilities, reshaping of the landform to enhance existing golf holes and practice facilities and create a new 9 hole short course. Remodelled driving range outfield and target greens. Provision to enhance internal facilities in the golf club house and entrance area. The work is to be phased in over two years 2013-15 and has an estimated investment/enhancement value for the golf course of approximately £500,000.

It’s a mere 8+ years since the reports mentioned above, in 2011. The landfill was dumped, the royalties received, no trace of the total amount, no records of VAT paid to HMRC, just one huge shambles managed by an inept WLBC. Pitiful!

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