Dereliction Of Duty, Known As The Great Golf Course Swindle

On being asked what evidence exists for how West Lancashire Borough Council owned Beacon Park Golf Course became a landfill site creating vast royalty wealth for Serco (the operator) and Oakland Golf & Leisure Ltd (referred to as Oaklands), we produce email exchanges below containing proof.

03 November 2015 12:52
To: Nelson, John; Gagen, Councillor
Subject: Beacon Park Golf Course

“Could you possibly let me know the start date for when Oaklands started their work at the BPGC, ie when the topsoil was first removed? Could you also let me know the start date for the delivery of the inert materials to BPGC? And could you please let me know how many deliveries of inert materials have been made to date?

“In respect of the new Footgolf proposal, could you let me know on what date this proposal was notified to WLBC, on which course it will be played, ie 18 hole/9 hole/both, and what fees will be charged? Has WLBC as a “one third shareholder” in the BPGC venture been presented with a business plan, and could you ascertain what staffing requirements there will be for this Footgolf venture?

“Finally for now when we spoke last I think we understood Oaklands allegedly has a record of golf course construction, but according to its website of historical completed projects there is no mention of any golf course constructed. That being the case how was WLBC able to conclude Oaklands was competent to undertake the project?”


05 November 2015 from John Nelson
“Further to your request for information.

“Contractors started on site in November 2013. The first sections of topsoil were moved back and deliveries of the inert materials commenced at the end of November 2013. The information regarding number of deliveries is not available. [Two years later and loads delivered not available!]

“Footgolf is one of the proposals for the Beacon, the course operator [Serco] was looking at incorporating this into the redevelopment work for the driving range and not the 18 hole or 9 hole course. WLBC is not a shareholder, the operation of the course and the facilities provided are for the course operator to determine. The Council will benefit from a split of one third of any operating surplus.[But not a shareholder in its own golf course]

“WLBC do not have a contract with Oaklands and would not be part of any verification or competency assessment of the company. This assessment was undertaken by Serco Leisure Operating Limited”. 

Regards John.
John Nelson
Head of Leisure and Cultural Services
West Lancashire Borough Council

Conclusion. West Lancashire Borough Council abdicated any responsibility for the development of the golf course, leaving it in the hands of Serco and the state you can see it in today. Planning permission granted in 2011, now nearing nine years for this appalling chapter in the history of this borough.

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