Two-time Major champion, Tony Jacklin, has just hosted two big events at Magnolia Park in Buckinghamshire, where he enjoys a role as the resort’s ambassador

On Friday 8th May, the 1969 Open champion hosted the Tony Jacklin CBE Golf Classic Celeb-Am at Magnolia Park, located close to the M40 in Buckinghamshire.

An aerial view of the par-5 18th at Magnolia Park

An aerial view of the par-5 18th at Magnolia Park

The competition, which attracted a host of teams and celebrities, including Willie Thorne, Peter Shilton, Glenn Hoddle, Bob Champion and Dan Walker, served up some amazing prizes including a car and short breaks at Praia D’El Rey in Portugal and Marriott Forest of Arden.

The ‘best two from four’ Stableford event was won by the team from Tiger Foods with 88 points, beating the Eligo team into second spot by three points. Third home were the Swiss Grill 1 team with 82 points.

After the golf, Willie Thorne hosted a Gala Dinner, where funds were raised for the Oxford Children’s Hospital, and ‘Amarillo’ singer, Tony Christie, provided the live soundtrack.

The event marked the Grand Opening of Magnolia Park Hotel Golf & Country Club’s new Best Western Plus hotel, which has proved extremely popular in a short space of time.

The recently opened Best Western Plus Hotel at Magnolia Park

The recently opened Best Western Plus Hotel at Magnolia Park

Owner, Alan Pither, continues to invest in the property which is also just one of two in the UK to boast the 3D Gears Golf system, capable of dissecting and portraying your swing in the minutest of detail thanks to its ultra high-tech eight-camera system.

Five days later, members of the golf media gathered at the country club to see this system for themselves, to check out the new hotel and to take part in a pro-am event alongside former Ryder Cup stars Peter Baker, David Gilford and Paul Broadhurst plus five-time European Senior Tour winner, Nick Job.

The event was won by Peter Baker’s team comprising Golf Monthly’s Jeremy Ellwood, Richard Green from GolfBreaks.com, and the club’s Jamie Powell who recorded the most extraordinary eagle imaginable on the 18th, courtesy of a miscued drive down the 16th then an 80ft putt up the tier from off the green.

1993 Ryder Cup start, Peter Baker, guided his team to victory in the Magnolia Park Media Day

1993 Ryder Cup start, Peter Baker, guided his team to victory in the Magnolia Park Media Day

The media also got the chance to see a plot of land across the road where an elementary par-3 course is currently laid out. This will soon be the scene of further significant Magnolia Park investment as plans are now finalised for a fantastic Tony Jacklin signature par-3 layout that will elevate things to a whole new level.

Jacklin, who is also president of the Campaign for REAL Golf, is a big advocate of high-quality par 3 courses as a means of bringing people into the game, and also providing a platform for a meaningful round of golf when time does not permit a full round on a big 18-hole course.

At a time when there is much doom and gloom about the state of the game in the UK and the effects of slow play, declining memberships and insufficient juniors coming through, Magnolia Park’s continued investment and development is to be applauded.

The club will be offering 50 free junior Tony Jacklin CBE Academy Memberships to local youngsters to encourage them into the game.