Par: 67 Length: 5,305 Driving Range: Yes Public or Private: Public Cost: £14-£25
Normally when I head out to review a course it involves a laborious train journey and then a taxi journey highlighted by my clubs clanging around in the boot leading to a disgruntled driver.
This was the first tick for Hersham Golf Club. Situated between Esher and Walton-on-Thames, it took a mere 22 minutes from Clapham Junction and a two minute walk from Hersham Station. No long train and no taxi – perfect.
The next positive is the warm atmosphere around the club. It exudes a village feel where everyone knows everyone and all are friendly to each other. I have been to countless clubs with a stuffy, bureaucratic atmosphere and it puts you off playing – nothing could be further from the truth at Hersham.
But most importantly what about the course? The cost for a round is £20 on weekdays and around £25 on weekends so I was expecting a middle of the range course. I was pleasantly surprised.
This woodland course is very short but it is also narrow in places and hazards are well placed to penalise the errant player. If your irons are dialled in you could rack up a great score. Your wedge is particularly important and will be in out of the bag all day.
With six par 3s on offer, it’s easy to pick up shots if you’re struggling with accuracy. On the other hand, you can look forward to picking up easy pars if you’re confident off the tee with your irons. None of the par 3s are troubling and the lower handicappers should be able to pick some shots up on them. There are a few par 4s which longer hitters could reach in one but most of us would need to hit a wedge in. The only par 5 (the 6th) is only 476 yards so you would be dissapointed to not at least get a par.
I was most impressed by the condition of the course. The greens were absolutely fantastic and, although a couple were slightly inconsistent, they were a stand-out feature. They were a good speed -soft enough to stop the ball but not slow. They’d give a couple championship courses a run for their money, that’s for sure.
The fairways were well maintained and cut to a good length. The tee boxes had obviously also been well looked after as there weren’t hundreds of divot marks which you often find, particularly at public courses which generally have high footfall leading to worn-out courses.
The front nine is the showpiece of the 18 with some gorgeous holes. There is plenty of water and on numerous occasions I was watched by a noisy gallery of ducks and various other wildlife. The back nine is of a lesser quality, although the last two holes are a nice send off, but by no means is it of a poor standard. For a course which expanded to become an 18, a slight differentiation in excellence is to be expected.
Hersham Golf Course's quality is far superior to its price. While it's not the hardest 18 you'll ever play, it's a fun round and you'll receive a warm welcome from members and staff.
Hersham Golf Course is offering Golfmagic members a FREE round of golf on weekdays. All you have to do is email firstname.lastname@example.org with your name, email and contact number and you will then be sent a voucher which entitles you to a round in the following two weeks.
Available until the 29th November but may be extended due to response.