Plans have been unveiled for a 13-hole adventure golf course at The Alnwick Garden, complete with animatronic creatures and a walk-through hornets’ nest.
The scheme has been lodged with Northumberland County Council and is earmarked for land adjacent to the existing garden shop and information centre and close to the Stuart Halbert Drop-in Centre.
A design and access statement submitted as part of the application says that the concept is for a ‘challenging, but fun, 13-hole adventure golf course which is unique to The Alnwick Garden and its setting.’
It will have aspects of a secret garden while including key features of successful adventure golf courses.
The design and access statement adds that ‘the main focal point will be the walk-through hornets’ nest, and this, along with props and other key features around the course, will ensure that visitors experience something new around every corner.’
The course is inspired by nature and props would include animatronic creatures, grass men, a potting shed, mushrooms and a wooden bridge.
The addition of the adventure golf course aims to enhance the tourist and visitor experience.
The attraction would be formed by using onsite materials, including natural rocks, old stone and wood, and be built around existing trees.
Visitors would enter and leave the course through The Garden’s information centre.
Garden director Mark Brassell said: “We are massively excited about this. We believe it would attract more people to The Garden and to Alnwick.
“We always want to keep things fresh and this will give people, especially families, something else to do.
“The golf course will attract all ages and will be a lot of fun.
“It will be in keeping with The Garden and we aim to give it themed decorations at Hallowe’en and Christmas.”
Mr Brassell said that subject to planning approval, the aim is to have the course up and running in June, or by the school summer holidays at the latest.
He added that it is anticipated that it will create one full-time job and one seasonal role.
Earlier this year, we reported that separate plans at The Garden for ‘a ground-breaking play village, with the largest play structure in the world’ for a site north of the Treehouse had been submitted to the county council, backed by a proposed £8.5million loan from the authority.
But at a county-council budget meeting in February, it was agreed to remove the loan from next year’s spending plan, but put it back before the council when a full risk appraisal has been done.