Entry Hill Golf Course
In the 19th, and much of the 20th century, Entry Hill Golf Course was known as Lower Barrack Farm. By the 1970’s the City of Bath owned the land - it is said it may have been given to the City for the people of Bath - and was used for some years as a temporary overflow refuse tip. In 1984, after public consultion, the Council built the Golf Course. It was managed for the Council, by a golf professional, Tim Tapley, as a Pay and Play course. In 1985, regular golfers set up a club, affiliated to Somerset County Golf. The course thrived under the Council and its golf professional, for many years, teaching schoolchildren and adult golf beginners.
In 2003 the Council contracted out its leisure services provision and the golf course was no longer managed independently, losing its pricing identity and its focus on beginners. Tim Tapley opened a small cafe in the Golf Shop but this did not compensate for the shortfall in golf club income and Tim eventually moved on. In 2014, BANES recontracted their leisure services and tried to find a separate operator for its golf facilities at Aproach and Entry Hill. However, this was not possible and in 2015 the Council's new leisure operator, GLL (Better) agreed to take on the management of the Entry Hill Golf Course. Although BANES met the shortfall in operating costs, the golf course continued to decline as a small facility within a large contract.
By 2017, the Council was looking at alternatives for the site, which would remove the ongoing cost to its revenue account and in December 2019, they initiated a consultation exercise. There was considerable support for the idea of a family cycle centre/Mountain Bike park. While there was some controvosy about the nature of the consulation BANES felt that there was sufficient public interest in this for a bike park to be one of the ideas they took forwards in their analysis of options for the site, the other two being a golf related activity or open parkland with a cafe.
The Entry Hill site was closed for much of 2020, following the announcement of a national pandemic due to coronavirus; and the withdrawal of GLL from the operation of the site. As the nation went through a series of lockdowns, the value of this local green space increased and many more residents discovered the pleasures of using this safe space for exercise and recreation. It has always been an important haven for local wildlife and many more people enjoyed seeing a wide range of animals flourishing on the site.
A tender process took place in late 2020 and the outcome of that is the proposal to redevelop the golf course as a Mountain Bike park. This proposal is described on a separate page of the wesbite https://www.entryhill.community/entry-hill-mountain-bike-park, where you will also find a link to a Q&A with more information about the proposal.