A GOLF club that was forced to close due to mounting financial problems has been put up for sale.

News that Woodham Golf and Country Club in Newton Aycliffe is on the market has brought fresh hope that a £32m housing and leisure development could eventually go ahead on the site.

Savills Estate Agents is seeking offers for the 18-hole golf course, which closed last November, but no guide price has been released.

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As well as the golf course and existing facilities, the site also comes with planning permission for 50 executive homes, a new golf clubhouse and a 75 bedroom hotel with conference and spa facilities.

Last June, when the club went into administration, its Irish owner, Washington Developments Ltd, described it as a “bitter blow.”

The company had spent five years securing planning permission for the development but, due to the difficult financial climate, was unable to raise the money needed for the project.

The investment was expected to have a positive impact on the Newton Aycliffe economy and create at least 150 construction jobs and 70 permanent positions.

Councillor Bob Fleming, leader of Great Aycliffe Town Council, said he was pleased to know there was still a chance the scheme could go ahead.

“Newton Aycliffe is a developing town and there is a growing demand for properties here,” he said.

“I was a member of Woodham Golf Club for many years. It is a fantastic golf course and a real asset to the town. I would definitely like to see it up and running again.”

First opened in 1981, Woodham Golf Course was designed by the highly respected J Hamilton Stutt, a founding member of the British Association of Golf Course Architects.

Abi Goodwin, associate of leisure and trading at Savills, said: “Woodham Golf and Country Club offers purchasers the opportunity to acquire an existing golf facility in close proximity to Darlington, Bishop Auckland and Durham that, with the advantage of an existing planning consent, provides a number of development opportunities in the future.”

For more information contact Ms Goodwin on 01865-269095