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Q&A: Brocket Hall's John Wells

PUBLISHED: 16:19 15 February 2010 | UPDATED: 14:56 20 February 2013

John Wells

John Wells

Brocket Hall's John Wells tells Hannah Gray about his plans for Christmas by the fire, his passion for Arsenal and his dream of following the Barmy Army

Brocket Hall's John Wells tells Hannah Gray about his plans for Christmas by the fire, his passion for Arsenal and his dream of following the Barmy Army

How old are you? 48


Tell us about your family.
I have a wife, Carol, and three children, Amy, 20, Rachel, 17, and Harry, 12.


Where do you live?
I live in Welwyn Garden City.


What is the best thing about Welwyn Garden City?
It is a well-maintained environment with good design around the town centre and good schools and communities.


What do you do for a living?
I am the estate and golf operations manager at Brocket Hall International Limited. I have worked there since 1992, helping with the rapid growth of the business since its purchase from Lord Brocket in 1996.


Tell us a bit about what your job involves.
On the golf side, I am responsible for overseeing the main golf areas including the golf shop, course maintenance, Faldo Golf Institute, members events, corporate golf events and course marshalling. On the estate side, with the support of the facilities and maintenance manager, we manage the upkeep and development of the 543-acre site.


What are the best and worst parts of your job?
The best is to see when clients and members have had a great day's golf and you meet them in the clubhouse afterwards for feedback. The worst thing is not always having enough time in a working day to complete the tasks I set out to achieve.


Does Brocket Hall have any special events planned for the festive season?
Throughout December we are offering Christmas golf packages at the clubhouse and all of the restaurants have themed menus, with Auberge Du Lac already fully booked for Christmas Day. The other special event I should mention is in early January: all the 150 staff come together for a party to celebrate the previous year's work.


Where will you spend Christmas Day?
I will be at home with my family. My sister-in-law's family and both my father and Carol's mother will be invited.


What is the best Christmas present you have ever received and why?
My best present is having the joy of watching my children open their presents on Christmas morning.


What is your favourite Christmas carol and why?
Silver Bells, because this used to be playing in the background when my parents invited neighbours and friends in for a drink on Christmas morning, which for some reason I remember from when I was a child.


Where would you spend your ideal Christmas Day and why?
As I will be spending it this year: at home with my family, starting the day with a Christmas breakfast and Champagne, having the family to lunch and then spending the afternoon and evening in the living room with the log fire and the whole family participating in games and quizzes, and finally going to bed in the early hours of Boxing Day morning.


What are your hobbies?
My hobbies are playing cricket and golf and watching all other sports, especially football. I help run a junior football team. I also enjoy following the stock market.


Do you have any unfulfilled ambitions?
Yes, running a marathon, skiing and I intend to follow the Barmy Army around the test-playing countries.


Where are the best views to be had in Hertfordshire?
Looking at the wonderful views across Brocket Estate.


What is your favourite town in Hertfordshire and why?
Old Welwyn, as it still has nice old pubs and restaurants and I meet lots of friends when I visit there, and Datchworth where for many years I played cricket on the green.


Sum up Hertfordshire in five words.
A safe place to live.


Who or what is the greatest love of your life?
My wife, children and Arsenal Football Club.


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