The fate of Wimbledon Park Golf Club has been hanging in the balance for almost a decade. The All England Lawn Tennis Club or the AELTC have had their sights set on expanding the Grand Slam tournament onto the neighbouring golf club for almost 10 years now, and in December last year, the inevitable happened. 

Members from the club were asked to vote; To accept the AELTC’s offer of £65m or to be able to continue playing golf for the arranged deal of a further 28 years. One of the members claimed that the situation was “like Brexit. It has split members”. Despite the battle, the golf club members voted 82% in favour of selling, resulting in a windfall payment of £85,000 per member. 

Others who have enjoyed the simple pleasure of a local golf club have said that “120 years of playing golf at Wimbledon Park has ended because of greed” and that “employees will be out of a job through no fault of their own”. The AELTC gave a £25m offer back in 2015 which was turned down by 58% of members. This was raised to £50m before the “best and final” of £65m was offered. Money talks.

Despite what could be regarded as a generous windfall payment, it is not entirely fair. Junior members such as myself walk away with no payment and no future in local golf. The AELTC has said it will use the land to hold qualifying matches at the club instead of at the Bank of England sports ground which is where they are being held at the moment. They say that preliminary matches are fundamental to ensure all players get the “experience of Wimbledon”. It is also rumoured that they intend to build a shopping centre on the 30-hectare space.

So, that's that. The golf club will continue to play for another 3 to 4 years before it is given over to the AELTC, taking the history of the club with it.