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Plans for a golf driving range and junior academy centre on land at Wirswall near Wrenbury are being supported by residents from Whitchurch and Nantwich, writes Belinda Ryan.

Ashbrook Golf Zone has applied to Cheshire East Council for permission to create the driving range and academy centre on agricultural land off Bradeley Green Lane.

The site is 3km north of Whitchurch and close to an existing golf course which, the applicant says, does not have adequate practice facilities.

The application is being dealt with by Cheshire East because the site is in the Wrenbury ward.

In a statement to the council, applicant Robert Ashbrook said: “This development and practice facilities proposed will enable me to develop learning and skills to young people as well as a facility for local people and professionals to practise their golf.

“England Golf have already stated that there aren’t enough resources in our area for practice facilities and presently, in my academy, I have county and England level players which I must take out of the local area to coach.”

Mr Ashbrook, an advanced PGA professional formerly of the now closed Brookfield Golf Club at Hankelow, says the facility will have 16 bays, a storage room for machinery, reception area and short game area.

Fifteen letters have been sent to the council about the proposal so far – all are in support.

A Nantwich resident said: “Mr Ashbrook has stated his intentions to particularly involve children and newcomers to the sport of golf. This is particularly needed in the Whitchurch area as such a facility is not available at present.

“It should be noted that over two million people have started, or are trying to start, playing golf in this country since the onset of Covid.

“The provision of this facility, the introduction of new employment, coupled with the relevant experience of the applicant all support the acceptance of this application.”

One Whitchurch resident, who is a county player, said: “Having this golf facility nearby, it will help me improve my game but also improve my social interaction with other thriving golfers.

“This proposal is here to help more and more kids and young adults get into the game, improving their mental and physical wellbeing – and hopefully this project will help me in these aspects.”

Another Whitchurch resident said: “It seems the perfect location, which would ensure more people coming to the town and obviously creating jobs.”

The application, number 22/0785N, is due to be considered by Cheshire East’s strategic planning board on May 4.

The closing date for comments is April 27 and the application can be viewed on the planning portal on the Cheshire East Council website.

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