Following a complete overhaul of the premises, Phipps Golf has now opened at Centurion Park - the home of Wallsend Golf Club. Sean Richardson, who has been trading as Phipps Golf for 27 years at Boldon Golf Club, is more than happy with the transformation and believes the new look pro-shop will be a huge bonus, not only for the membership at Wallsend but all golfers living in the North Tyneside area.
Sean said: "Phipps is a family business run by myself and my wife Amanda and although I will be primarily based at Boldon, I will be keeping a close eye on things at Centurion Park and I will be across there most evenings."
Brian Willis, formally of Team Golf, has been appointed to manage the shop, which has been stocked with a full range of the latest golf equipment and accessories.
Sean added: "As far as the shop is concerned, I've head-hunted the people that I know are very good, so working with Brian will be Gavin Jones, who is a very good salesman.
"We've also got my niece Emma, who is very much high-street orientated and has managed various big named shops. Our intention is to cultivate the ladies section in particular, so Amanda and Emma will be looking after that side of things."
The teaching side of the business is to be run separately and will be provided by PGA Professional Simon MacWhirter. Although Sean and Simon will be working together, the coaching is independent to the retail side of the operation.
Having qualified in November 1995, Simon worked for five years as a teaching professional at Parklands, Matfen and Aldwark Manor golf clubs before spending two years at David Leadbetter's golf academies in Austria, Spain and Florida.
In 2002 he moved back to the UK and returned to Parklands to work with Sean. He then went freelance and between 2004 and 2007 worked as a teaching pro at Swarland, Belford, Wooler and Bamburgh Castle golf clubs.
More recently, Simon returned to Parklands where he has been employed as their Junior Development Coach.