Golf courses take up twice as much land in England as used for housing, according to recent calculations.
With developers struggle to build enough houses in Britain to keep up with demand, Inside Housing blogger Colin Wiles estimated that England's golf courses take up 270,000 hectares, roughly equating to 2% of its 13.4 million hectares in land area.
There are over 2,000 full 18-hole golf courses, along with hundreds of smaller 9-hole and pitch-and-putt courses, which reach the combined total, Wiles said.
"English golf courses use an amount of land that is equivalent to one fifth of England’s total built up area (10% of England is built upon) and could provide at least eight million homes," he wrote.
That's a lot of golf courses
Official figures from the UK's National Ecosystem Assessment indicate that around 10% of England's land is classified as urban, with most of it taken up by gardens, parks, roads and lakes. Just 2.27% of that is built upon and only 1.1% of it is used for homes.
Pete Jefferys, from the homeless charity Shelter, wrote: "Golf is not the answer to the housing shortage, but it does show that we shouldn’t despair. There is space to house the next generation, let’s get on with it.
"This is not to say we need to build over any golf course in the country, or have anything against golf. Just that we could find the land for homes if we really wanted to."