Laid out over 400 acres of free draining sandstone, play is possible virtually all year round making it an ideal venue summer or winter. Hollinwell was recently awarded a 5-Star ‘Joy-to-be-alive’ rating by FineGolf.
Hollinwell is managed in accordance with R&A Agronomy advice and guidelines which allows the club to provide the very best year-round playing conditions for its members and guests. The aim is to provide an authentic experience with greens that are dry, firm, and well-paced. Green speed will reflect prevailing weather conditions and maintenance practices at the time, but routine speeds of 9ft – 9ft 6ins can be expected with speed increased to 9ft 6ins – 10ft for selected periods and events.
The club follows a responsible and sustainable management plan to ensure that the traditional heathland golfing experience is maintained for current and future generations of golfer to enjoy. Good practice along with various environmental constraints dictate that chemical, fertilizer and water inputs are minimal, and native grass species are nurtured with the cutting height on greens not taken below 4mm. Chasing excessive green speed through prolonged low cutting is avoided because it could compromise grass composition and the club’s agronomic and environmental objectives.
The Golf Course
The course is situated in a natural valley within Kirkby Forest that utilises the naturally undulating terrain to the full. Some fairways sweep through wooded hillsides and others run through heather, fern and gorse clad valleys. Hollinwell was formed in 1887 and moved to Hollinwell in 1901, when the twice Open Champion, Willie Park Junior, was invited to lay out a new 18 hole course. The Willie Park routing makes this one of the greatest inland courses.
In the same way that he maximised the use of height in the ground at Sunningdale Old, here he used the natural contours of the Valley of Kirkby Forest, creating a course of just short of 6000 yards which was long in those days using gutta percha balls and hickory clubs. The strength of challenge continues today exemplified by a par of 72 and SSS 76 from the Championship tees which now measures 7250 yards.
Hollinwell was delighted to be awarded a 5-Star ‘Joy-to-be-alive’ rating by FineGolf, enjoy their incisive review detailing our leadership on conservation and running golf.