Ferndown Golf Club – Hmmmm… never again

Ferndown Golf Club… Introduction

In most cases when I’m writing these golf club reviews I try to keep emotions far away, such things that would sway or unfairly bias a club over another. Examples of this, the weather, how I played or something about the clubhouse or a friend’s opinion on the club.

I try to as a priority focus on the quality of the golf course and then filter in other things, like the facilities at the club, food or how friendly a welcome is etc…

But sometimes I just can’t keep the emotion away… Ferndown Golf Club… I hope to never see you again..!

Ferndown Golf Club…The Facts

– Architect: Harold Hilton
– Date Opened: 1912
– Location: Ferndown, Dorset
– Rank: #52
– Tees Played: Yellows (6,251 yards) Par 71 (SSS 70)
– Other Tees: Whites (6,556 yards)
– Fees: £50
– Date Played: March 2007
– Website: www.ferndowngolfclub.co.uk

Why so Negative..?

So lets set the scene. We are small group of five golfers on a tour around Bournemouth. We’ve taken a few days off work and looking forward to playing some of the top courses in the area.

At the time, we were all in our early to mid twenties and we arrive at Ferndown Golf Club expecting a decent afternoons golf, with tee times booked on the 18-hole Old Course.

We enter the pro shop and this is where the problems start. Once we’d paid our green fees, the pro insisted that we (1 x 3-ball and 1 x 2-ball) will have to split up with the 2-ball off the first and the 3-ball off the tenth. Ok, slightly frustrating , but not the end of the world.

The pro then hurries us out of the shop and says we have to tee off immediately! Why, I have no idea as the course seemed pretty empty on the Thursday afternoon we were there. We’d only been there 10 minutes and now we had to tee off with no warm up and no chance of anything to eat before the round.

Now I was starting to get frustrated, but off the the first I went.

First tee… SMASH… straight down the middle. The issues in the pro shop now forgotten and I started to look forward to settling into a heathland round of golf, however, Ferndown Golf Club had other ideas!

We got to our drives in the middle of the first fairway and before playing our second shots we see someone crossing holes marching straight for us. This ‘gentleman’ member reached us a even before we had the chance of any formal introductions, he was bellowing streams of anger.

‘We are on the wrong hole… wearing the wrong attire… wrong this… wrong that… blah blah blah’

The idiot finally calmed down and left us to it after we’d explain what the pro had asked us to do and after my playing partner had shown the guy that his wind beater was in fact made by Footjoy and correct golf course attire!!

We then got onto the third hole, a nice looking dog-leg right par 4, and there was a big sign saying hole closed and players are to walk through to the fourth tee. Seriously!! No mention of this by the pro in the shop and no offer of a reduction in green fee.

Is this really how visitors should be expected to be treated..!?

After the third, we were both keen to finish the round and get away from the club as soon as possible… such a negative, old, stuffy and stuck-up place to play golf.

The Course

The course was probably very nice! But I really do not care for the club or the quality of the course… or what Peter Alliss might have to say.

I’ve also heard that the club have made lots of improvements in recent years to the course. Great… good for them.

Final Thoughts…

Don’t get me wrong… I love the traditions of Golf and I love the history of the game. A lot of golf clubs have such a perfect balance of old golfing traditions, with a modern forward thinking attitude.

Sadly, whenever I think of Ferndown Golf Club, it stirs up emotions of the side of golf that I hate… old school attitudes, traditions for traditions sake and members (usually older gentlemen) who think they can talk (or shout in our case) down to people just because they are a member!!

No thanks Ferndown… onward and upwards from this little place in Dorset.

For other course reviews, please go to my challenge progress page and to see what this Top 100 Challenge is all about, click this link.


(Photo taken from the Ferndown Golf Club website)

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