A West Midlands golf club has exchanged hands for less than a tenth of the price it was sold for a decade ago.
Aston Wood Golf Club, set across 210 acres of Sutton Coldfield countryside, has been bought for £58,000 after its owner collapsed when poor weather hit bookings and memberships fell.
The deal represents a major fall in the £650,000 paid by Aston Wood Golf Club 2000 after securing a £350,000 loan from Royal Bank of Scotland.
The business and assets – including all 52 members of staff – have now been purchased by Aston Wood Golf Club, a company connected with the club’s landlords Struan Investments
The club, which opened in 1994, includes an 18-hole course, as well as a driving range, restaurant, two function rooms and offices.
A report written by joint administrator Nigel Price, of Begbies Traynor, states: “While the club has capacity to accommodate 800 members, tough market conditions and competition from other clubs in the local area led to a fall in numbers.
“Membership for the current year had fallen to 648.
“The fall in memberships meant that the company relied heavily upon the off-season functions to generate additional income. Unfortunately, the bad weather in winter 2010 forced the cancellation of a number of key events.”
Mr Price said that despite agreeing a rent reduction with the landlord, the company was unable to pay its second instalment due in July and was not in a position to pay staff salaries in August, before calling in administrators.
He added: “At the time of the original acquisition, RBS secured its debts against the company’s leasehold interest over the property. The report recently prepared by property specialist Bruton Knowles suggested that, due to a not-for-profit clause contained within the lease, it had a nil value.
“This reduced the balance sheet value of the company’s leasehold interest to nil, rendering the company insolvent on a balance sheet basis.”
The report revealed there would be no funds for preferential or unsecured creditors after the collapse.
The championship course, in Little Aston, was designed by BBC television presenter and commentator Peter Allis and former golf professional Clive Clark.