Busy Easter boost for Haigh Hall

The plantation gates entrance at Haigh Hall
The plantation gates entrance at Haigh Hall
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A NEW fund could boost jaded play facilities at the borough’s biggest tourist attraction - Haigh Hall was “rammed” with visitors over Easter despite an acknowledgement from the cash-strapped council the attractions need investment it can ill-afford.

Haigh Hall Country Park was “rammed” with visitors over the Easter Bank Holiday despite an acknowledgement from the cash-strapped council the attractions need investment it can ill-afford.

Town hall chiefs are currently studying the conclusions of a consultant’s report about the possibility of private sector partnership to revive its all-round appeal.

Now a councillor is putting together a motion for the next full council meeting which would see all profits generated by Haigh Hall for a nominated period diverted into a “pot” that can pay for replacement of the ageing children’s playground equipment.

Hindley independent Bob Brierley has been a leading light in the volunteer group Friends of Haigh Country Park which helped see the full re-opening of the crazy golf course at Haigh on Easter Monday, after members refurbished the novelty course.

Coun Brierley is now canvassing the official opposition Wigan Independent Network group of councillors for support ahead of the council meeting on April 24.

He said: “Over Easter weekend Haigh Hall was absolutely rammed with visitors and there was hardly a single space to be had in both car parks from dawn until dusk, even though the place is crying out now for investment. Last year there was 30,500 rounds of golf played at Haigh with profits of £300,000 without any investment back into Haigh Hall.

“The place was also fully booked up with weddings and private events, again with thousands of pounds profits gone elsewhere.

“I am told the place is fully booked up for 2013 /14.

“The tickets from the car parks alone over the Bank Holiday weekend giving Wigan Leisure and Culture Trust (WLCT) more income from the site at £1,000 plus, before you even start to take in the profits from the cafe, because who knows how much they took.

“I am also aware that the owner of the fairground owner pays WLCT £100 per day, Monday to Saturday and then £200 for standing the fair on Sundays.

“My motion will be that all profits from Haigh Hall golf course, the car park and fairground should remain on site to improve the facilities with much needed new play ground equipment.”

Standish Independent Coun Gareth Fairhurst said: “I will be supporting attempts to keep the profits from Haigh Hall site for the facilities in Haigh Hall.”

A spokesman for WLCT declined to comment.