Holes of Merit:2, 3, 4, 9, 18
Tom Doak recalls Ashridge Golf Club as one the best parklands in Britain.
The hole names are spectacular: Devil's Den, Witchcraft Bottom, and Nob's Crook, Thunderdell being four such examples.
The 14th green is a Road Hole template by Tom Simpson.
Sir Henry Cotton was professional at the club when he won the 1937 Open at Carnoustie.
It was reported that dynamite was used to remove tree stumps on the course!
The Ashridge Golf Club hosted Open Championship Regional Qualifying for six years between 2003 and 2008.
Golf Course Review
Established in 1932, Ashridge Golf Club is one of the most underrated golf courses in England and the British Isles. The course is hidden away in The National Trust Ashridge Estate of the Chiltern Hills not far from St Albans and Hemel Hampstead in Hertfordshire. A former deer park for the landed gentry, it is a beautiful, undulating, stunning parkland with many magnificent specimen trees. It is steeped in natural beauty and is regularly featured in the Top 100 Golf Courses in the UK with a classic mix of traditional and modern golf architecture.
Ashridge Golf Club was officially opened in 1932 after being laid out by The 3 Majors: Major C K Hutchison, Sir Guy Campbell, and Colonel S V Hotchkin. By 1935, Tom Simpson had made further updates to Ashridge Golf Club making the course what it is today. Tom Simpson is considered one of the Golden Age's greatest architects and needs no introduction. The 3 Majors were responsible for such courses as West Sussex and Woodhall Spa. The golf course architecture pedigree is simply unrivaled.
Tom Simpson & Ashridge Golf Club
In June of 1935, it was reported in Tatler that Simpson was responsible for 'new holes', 'shifting the tees', and building four 'new greens'. The 14th was labeled 'the most perfect copy of the Road Hole that it is possible to imagine.' The 17th and 18th are also of Simpon's vintage. The green site on the 17th at Ashridge Golf Club is spectacular.
- The holes attributed to Tom Simpson are 14, 17 and 18.
- The holes attributed to the 3 Majors are 1, 2, 4-13, 15 & 16.
- The 3rd hole - Unkown.
Ashridge Golf Club's Routing
Routed as a rough figure of 8 or cloverleaf, the two loops begin and end at the clubhouse. Ashridge Golf Club is routed in what has been described as a 'cloverleaf'. The front nine is a single loop counterclockwise and returning to the clubhouse. The second loop is comprised of holes 10, 11, and 12. The third loop is made of holes 13 to 18.
The current 3rd hole was added after Simpson's work. The original 3rd was parallel to the road behind the 2nd green. The tee was elevated on one side of the ravine and played across to the other side of the ravine with a green perched on the hillside.
The course plays from 6045 yards and can be stretched to 6678 yards. There are five par 5's, eight par 4's, and five par 3's. Uniquely, there are no two holes with the same par played back to back!
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Everything you need to know before you go!
Address:Hertfordshire, HP4 1LY, England