You pass through the main gate of the estate at Brocket Hall and up the long drive to the exquisite stately home that dates back to 1239 getting a small glimpse of the course that awaits you.
On the morning of our planned visit to the ‘Outlaws’ in Nottingham I decided to get a quick nine holes in at Boxmoor Golf Club with Ken. We had last played there in 2007 but I remember it being a very friendly club whose course provided a great test to the golfer with many holes requiring pin point accuracy.
It is a bit of a walk to hole number 1 but once there you are presented with a pretty unique layout, if viewed from above I think it would look a bit like a question mark with the green situated in the middle part of the arc at the top. This leaves you with two choices, try to play for the left side fairway, the start of the question mark as you would write it or take the shorter, safer option and play for the tail, I suppose the tee are would be the dot.
I really enjoyed number 2, the drive to the downward sloping, left to right fairway, the approach to the edge of the lake and then the accurate pitch to the green. Number 3 plays back the other way with the climb to the green making it a tough par 4 while the green on the following hole is tricky to hit being perpendicular to the tee with bunker in front and behind. Read more
We played the longer of the two courses here but we are sure both courses are to the same standard. The clubhouse, a 17th Century Mansion House, looks magnificent for a start and we seemed to be treated like guests in a hotel so full marks to the staff and very friendly members. The fairways at Moor Park are well defined and the tees were in great condition too although there didn’t seem to be much variation on them, just large rectangular mounds with tees at the front middle and back. The greens were great, they rolled true and were a little firm but at least they were very consistent.
Rickmansworth is quite a hilly parkland municipal course.
Oxhey Park is a public pay & play course that has a bit of a history it used to be an 18 hole course built on land owned by the Blackwell family in 1910, who then sold the estate to London County Council in 1946 who made it a municipal course in 1947 with a par of 78, but it was closed in 1954. Now just a 9 hole course it has got some nice features on it’s layout.
Don’t turn up here and expect carpet like greens and fairways but for the beginner just starting out or the experienced golfer wanting a bit of practice it is well worth the visit.
For a Public Pay & Play course Little Hay is a very good golf complex. The course itself was in good condition, greens are good and undulating in parts. The fairway’s were cut a little long for June but were not too bad, some of the holes are very hilly in places with blind tee shots on a few of them.
There is not much water here just one man made pond about 6ft x 6ft on the 10th hole. The practice facilities here were great, a nice driving range, pitching and putting practice areas too, for just over £10 a round very good value for money.
The only bad thing about this course was the changing room facilities, they were tiny, about as big as the man made pond, we ended up not having a shower after our round and changing in the car park. If not for the very poor changing room facilities this could have been a really good experience.
Batchworth Park starts with trouble down the right of the 1st but with the 2nd fairway running alongside you do have a bail out area. Next comes a straight forward short par 4 with a good chance for a birdie, then it’s on to the rolling fairway of the 3rd, a good accurate drive is needed here if you are going to reach the green with your next shot.
A very friendly little club this, so much so that I forgot to ask about the facilities so if a member happens to read this could they let me know if I got anything wrong. The course starts with a tough par 3 where the green is hidden behind a mound that slopes left to right in front of the green. The second hole is pretty straight forward with just the left to right sloping fairway to negotiate, then comes ‘Cardiac Hill’ as the members call it, 183 yards in length although it seems like most of that yardage is up.