Purchasing a property – your home – is a complex task. Beyond falling in love with the property, the head must remain firmly screwed on to factors such as proximity to schools, transport links, ample storage, parking, and all your personal preferences for contented living. Apart from the bricks and mortar, for most of us this decision is usually influenced by local amenities. One of these factors is often the opportunity to watch high quality sport without having to drive miles.
The Surrey/Berkshire borders are an excellent location for the variety of professional sport available within less than 30 miles. Surrey estate agent, James Wyatt, of Barton Wyatt in Virginia Water is a true sports voyeur and talks us through the hottest sporting locations in their vicinity: “We are blessed with a fabulous variety of ‘top name’ sporting venues on our doorstep.
“Of course, having so many world class venues does mean that we get to rub shoulders with many famous sports stars in Virginia Water and it is not unusual to turn the corner in Waitrose to bump into any number of world famous golfers. Wentworth obviously attracts plenty of golfers but our clients also include a few pop stars, entertainers and actors.”
James’ love of sport has helped the success of his estate agency: “The old adage of doing business on the golf course may not pull the same punch as in previous decades but the networking that comes from being seen and involved in sport locally has greatly benefited my business.”
So let’s look at the top 10 sporting venues within a 30 miles radius of Barton Wyatt’s offices:
* 1.5 Miles – Wentworth Golf Course – Undoubtedly the premier golf course in England. Annually this course attracts the biggest names in golf to the beautifully manicured greens. The start of the European Tour BWW PGA championship on May 26th is attracts huge crowds to the area. As a member you are entitled to special privileges. www.wentworthclub.com
* 3.5 Miles – Guards Polo at Smiths Lawn – A treat to watch even if you are not a keen ‘horsey’ person. Watching polo can either be an extremely up-market affair in a champagne tent dressed in all your finery or equally you would feel just as at home turning up with a picnic rug and the children. It is not uncommon to spot the odd Royal at Guards (HRH Prince Philip is the Club’s President). The big annual event is Cartier International Day, this year on 24th July.
* 4 Miles – Sunningdale Golf – Sometimes overlooked in the area which is unwise, as many describe this course as superior to Wentworth. Used as one of the courses for the InternationalFinal Qualifying rounds for Europe. There is also the Sunningdale Foursome which is a unique competition open to professional and amateur players.
* 5.5 Miles – Royal Ascot – (14th – 18th June) – A week of pure glamour, lovely hats and champagne tents. This is the highlight of the racing season for many.
* 16 Miles – Oxford and Cambridge Boat Race (26th March) – Thousands of people watch this on the television but it is such an exciting event to witness live. An easy direct train from Virginia Water to Barnes and then a lovely stroll up the Thames should make a fantastic day out.
* 17 Miles – Twickenham – (Various dates) – World renowned Twickers – home to English rugby and the place to be seen in your Barbour jacket and school tie. Just 21 minutes on a direct train from Virginia Water will beat the traffic.
* 22 miles – Wimbledon – (20th June – 3rd July) Without a doubt the best known tennis location in the world attracting the crème de la crème of international tennis stars. Let the train take the strain and you will be there in just over half an hour.
* 22 miles – Henley Regatta – (29th June – 3rd July) – You shouldn’t overlook the premier rowing event in the world. If you are fortunate enough to have a ticket into the Leander tent then beware what you wear – ladies with their knees showing will not be welcome.
* 23 Miles – Chelsea and Fulham Football Club grounds – No sporting list would be complete without a football venue. Chelsea and Fulham both speak for themselves – world class football teams with plenty of excitement on and off the pitch.
* 25 Miles – London Marathon – (April 17) – If you are running then the distance is a little further as the Marathon starts by Excel and finishes at Buckingham Palace. As a spectator this event can be incredibly moving to watch. The feeling of togertherness that the runners have with total strangers on the course and the strength they take from the cheering crowds is something to be seen and thoroughly enjoyed.
Hopefully this epic list of sporting events has wetted your appetite for things to come this year – and that is without touching on the excitement that 2012 will bring with the Olympics.
So when asked which was James Wyatt’s favourite he responded: “I couldn’t possibly choose – each of these sports are so unique to watch it would be unfair to declare one better than another – but for ease of getting home afterwards I suppose the PGA Golf at Wentworth does come up trumps!”
For more information contact Barton Wyatt on 0134 484 3000 or visit www.bartonwyatt.co.uk