Review's of Richmond Park Golf Course
Richmond Park Golf Course
This is a public course very close to central London and I have rated it accordingly. For the money you really couldnt ask for more. There are two 18 hole courses and good driving range. The clubhouse is very welcoming as are the staff. I have played both courses and the Princes is probably the hardest of the two. And the hillier. And the ground staff do a pretty good job of keeping it very playable and open in all conditions.
Good all rounder changed a lot since I last played
New course layout; OK needs time to mature; but.....
I started to learn to play golf at RPGC 25+ years ago; this is the new layout for the 5,204 par 68 shorter Princes course; opened in May 2014. The 'new' course includes some new holes plus a few that were part of the original Dukes course. Generally I was happy with the layout of the new Princes course. However, it has to be said that the condition of the bunkers was appalling; either because of insufficient sand in them or more gallingly too many examples of animal burrowing holes under the bunker rims. Secondly; some of the greens were in poor condition because of the effects of recent hollow-tining maintenance. At the £15 seniors green fee it was reasonable VFM; at the full rate I'm not so sure. I expect that the course will be in better condition with a further winter/spring maturing period.
Still suffering from re-modelling?
Played the Princes course. Pretty course with some lovely views. Recently re-modelled to facilitate the position of the new clubhouse (which is very nice). The greens on the whole were good but speed varied between old and new ones, which wasn't easy when you didn't know which was which. Fairways were a bit bare in places but overall not too bad. The rough wasn't bare at all! Tee boxes were the biggest let down as the grass needed cutting on many of them and others were bare and marked. That said, it was great value for money, especially if you are a senior, and I enjoyed it.
Prince's : much shorter but fluid with great views of the Royal Park....
The new layout has reduced the course by some 400 yards +, which is a shame but on the bright side one can get 18 holes in just 3 hours.....
Lots of new holes, some pinched from the original Duke' s course, from original driving range, some ver short Par 3s and 4s...... My 2 favourite holes have disappeared: a long Par 3 which used to play to different flags/greens depending of the time in the day and the long Par 5 downhill (now a short Par 4 and a Par 3....
The 18th is a totally new short Par 4, look straight and easy but danger awaits: a stream/ditch some 60 yards from the green, 3 or 4 bunkers carefully guarding the green and the large new lake at the back of the green......very interesting.
The new greens are good but not as firm as the originals which have always been excellent by their conditions, contours & ondulations but still a pleasure to putt and 1st class for local Pay & Play courses.
The numerous geese sometimes leave "messages" on the greens, a bit of a nuisance though......
The layout is fluid, well sign posted, fairways could be better, the 1st cut could be shorter, the rough is tough, always take provisional off the tee if you are not a straight hitter as no guarantee you will find your ball. Old tee boxes could do with TLC.
Due to the disappearance of the old members of staff, one does not feel yet the warm atmosphere that used to be @ Richmond Park but I am sure that in a few months time, things will get better.
The outside terrace overlooking the new lake is a real pleasure on a sunny day like today .
Still a very popular venue, there could have been more thoughts put into new layout, placement of the two 18th greens, ie. nearer the terrace so one can watch the final putts whilst enjoying a drink. The air blower/shoe cleaner is in the wrong place, at the start of the 2 courses, so when you finish your round you are 100 metres away from it......no way to leave your golf bag in view when enjoying the 19th hole, so one must return to the Car park for safety.
By the way, always "shout fore" when errand shots, one of our team (Paul S.) nearly lost his nose or his teeth, if it was not for the shout!!!! The ball flew past him and landed on the white tee box behind him.....
All is well, that ends well.
Latest update..... well worth waiting for re-modelling of the Prince's & Duke's Courses...
Yes, now fully operating as 2 definite/permanent 18 holes courses with all the changes that have taken place.
I played the Duke's today and I like the new layout but still think the new 18th could have been longer and finish nearer the Clubhouse. It is very well sign posted, the greens very good (that has always been a trademark of these 2 Royal Pay & Play courses).
The halfway hut near the 10th (Duke's) only opens at weekends. Quite a few benches & chairs under the oak trees. I believe the Saturday/Sunday are very busy with visitors and the White Lodge and Richmond Park golf clubs members. It has toilets facilities round the back too.
I personally believe the new layout of the Prince's will be my preference as it has more up and down hills and better views of Richmond Park and surroundings. Although shorter, I find it more interesting.
The Clubhouse is light and welcoming. The outside seating area very pleasant now that the lake and the grass have established themselves.
Many of the original Pros have left to new pastures, one gone to heaven (bless him), only one left of my original acquaintances from some 6 years ago....
The Proshop is depleted, only selling Tees & golf balls, but apparently items can be ordered on line ready for collection the next day.
Food, snacks, drinks, tea/coffee are reasonably priced.
New staff behind the counter offer a warm welcome.
The new covered driving is now open and has several bays and the yardage flag, putting area by the Clubhouse near the lake on the way to both 1st Tees (Duke's & Prince's).
Will try to play the new Prince's course next week & report. Anyone want to join me, look at the Events calendar.
Course Renovation - Dukes & Prince - Short update/Garmin
Due to the relocation of the new Clubhouse, the 2 courses layout has changed.
At present the Dukes course is 18 holes, with a new layout but temporary, fully playable as an 18 holes. There will a new 18th finishing by the beautiful clubhouse and also 4 new holes taken from the Prince's course, if that makes sense. I think completion will be next year.
As to the Prince's course: at the moment it is playable as a 9 holes, twice, some of the original holes have stayed the same during the reconstruction of both courses and some new holes have been introduced.
When finished, I reckon it will be one of the best Pay & Play in the area, the original greens are superb, well established, true and firm, a pleasure to sink those putts... And of course the location, in a Royal Park, so near Richmond, London etc... is an attraction.
GARMIN DEVICES DO NOT SEEM TO PICK UP THE NEW HOLES, WELL MINE (S1 Approach Watch) DOES NOT... so not sure about Apps on phone etc...
Watch this space for more update.
THE END..... (that was a short update!!)
Re-designed "Duke's Course"..... shorther but more challenging....
The new set up is shaping up nicely, but still a huge amount of work to be carried out.
The Clubhouse is wonderful and now there is a real atmosphere, warm ambiance, the place is becoming alive, you feel you belong. The different "Pros" seem to lend a hand to everything: reception, shop, snacks & bar as well, and they do a very good job. The half way hut has disappeared, not sure if it will be replaced but I believe the new parcours will be going past the Clubhouse where one can do a pit-stop.
As to the re-design of the Duke's Course which I played today, the course is shorter but more challenging. The greens are in superb condition, "chapeau" (my hat off) to the Greenkeepers, you do not normally find such quality on a Pay & Play course.
It is quite strange to play some new holes, some old ones re-modelled, some exactly the same but with different number and also different stroke index. So when you do this for the first time, your brain can get a little confused, it is quite difficult to see the course as a new one... but I like it.
Very popular place to play golf on a Friday afternoon and even more so now with the very attractive new Clubhouse. But I believe the best day to play there is Thursday afternoon, as there is a very appetising "Steak Night", and the Chef inspires confidence, you feel he can present you with a 1st class tender, juicy steak, with fresh salad and other delicious accompaniments. Will report next week....
The other course, the Prince's, is a temporary 9 holes (that you play twice) some holes re-modelled, some are new ones, some new greens as well. One expects it to be a complete 18 holes by April next year. Again, it will be strange to play this as a new course, but one gets use to it.
The new signage is very adequate, just as well as starting at the opposite hand of the Park blurs the mind a bit.
The pond by the outside terrace is now filled with water where Canada geese and ducks from all of Richmond Park seem to gather. Unfortunately, they also seem to leave messages on the patio... hoops, watch where you walk. I expect there will be plants/flower/bushes/trees added around the edges etc.
The "living roof" is doing well, the grass has certainly grown since my last visit in May this year. Not sure if it is meant to be cut or not, but not as easy job as the roof is not flat, a perilous job for the skilled staff.
The Pro shop is well stocked and now there are a few Ladies clothing on display.
New driving range still under construction, so is the practice putting green, chipping/sand bunkers area and new pathways as well.
When all the work is completed, it will certainly be the best Pay & Play around in a wonderful location that is the Royal Park of Richmond Upon Thames. Part of the Glendale Golf group, very good pricing, Check their website.
PS... Very important..
I forgot to mention that my Garmin watch did not pick up the new layout holes, so I assume I shall have to do some magic with Google Earth, my PC. etc... or contact Garmin ?
New Clubhouse now open, new entrance, new course layout, new address
Today I paid a visit to the new Clubhouse, which is in a new location. I did not play as both courses are being re-designed. The Duke course is fully operational, with a different layout and some new greens. The Prince's course is 9 holes at present, all the rest is under construction.
The new covered Driving range is also being constructed.
Large car park and an overflow as golfers are expected to flock to this new location. When all finished I expect it to be one of the best Pay & Play, in a beautiful royal park.
THE NEW CLUBHOUSE IS STUNNING: very modern design, sort of an arc shape, lots of glass, cedar wood panels and the most amazing feature is the "living" roof with special grass/plants. Eco friendly and I believe there are some solar panels somewhere but I did not see them. Will enquire on my next visit. I believe all the rain water is going be used for something or rather. There is a very large lake in front of the Clubhouse, and all around the lake there are still lots of constructions going on, piles of earth waiting to be grassed over, etc... It has been a very long wait for this new place and it will be well worth it.
The inside is extremely spacious, minimalist, light, very modern layout and furniture, all open plan which include the reception, coffee bar/ restaurant and Pro Shop (but no Ladies clothing....), different seating areas cleverly designed & with modern furniture, large glass panels overlooking the lake described earlier, there is outside seating area by the lake and when finished it will be very outstanding and I reckon one of the nicest Clubhouse I have ever seen, it beats the Listed/Graded buildings anytime (for the spaciousness/light)....but one cannot really compare modern & classic/historic buildings.
The changing facilities/toilets are superb, very minimalist, the best hardware and handryer (Dyson Blades). The Ladies changing room, spacious, tall lockers (need a £1.00 coin), 4 showers with no doors or curtains, so no need to be shy about nudity. I did not visit the Men changing rooms but I expect it is of similar standard.
I spoke to several regular players: they are all a little perplexed by the new layout, quite different from the previous courses, both Dukes and Prince, it will take them a while to get used to the newly numbered holes, their mind is still thinking of the previous holes number/layout.... Interesting to know how long it will take them to "switch" but the Royal Park surroundings are still as beautiful as ever, I think I am very privileged to live so near this facility. The new entrance is off the A3 and can be easily missed when coming from Richmond Park itself /Roehampton way, one has to do a loop and travel under the A3 and then a left. One needs a very up to date GPS. I shall try to update TSG with the address I have and off course will post some photos, so watch out...THE END.
No, not quite, I forget to say that the half way hut is still present, in the same location with friendly staff, so don't forget to stop for refreshments. Whilst construction works is still going on, golf lessons still take place. The friendly Pro (s) will take you in a buggy to a practice grass area (the real thing, not artificial green matts).This time:THE END
Worth a visit. Not the hardest of courses
I can't really judge the clubhouse, shop, practise facilities as the new lot is opening later in the month. The new club house looks very impressive from a distance. So I will definitely come back to see this when in full swing.( s'cuse the pun)
The course itself is pleasant enough, nothing amazing and probably not for your more accomplished player. A little up and downish and only 1 par 5 although a couple of long par 4's and the 18th is the longest par 3 I have played. If it had been off the proper tees I would have had to drive it.
Most fairways are very open. Nice little hut that you can visit more than once (due to layout) for a warming brew or bacon roll. Shame more courses don't have these.
Golf in Royal Park...
Richmond Park Golf Club has 2 courses: The Prince & The Duke, so it had royal connection, but I wont go into details as I am trying to write shorter reviews.
Richmond Park GC is a Pay & Play, where you just turn up, no need to book a Tee time, you will be guaranteed a game on either course. Can be quite busy over the weekends. You may even see some celebrities having a go at golf, I remember seeing Gareth Gates having fun one Friday afternoon, but it was not fun being stuck being his 4-ball as they were forever looking for their errant shots, and the rough is rough....
Today (25 Sep 2012), I played the Duke the longest one of the 2 courses, a course that is special to me as it is where I first ventured as a novice with my brand new golf clubs & bag a few years ago. (At the present time, The Prince course is subject to alterations due to the construction a the long awaited & needed brand new Clubhouse).
A parkland course with lovely views of Richmond Park, but rather flat & not manicured, the greens have always been superb in condition & I always putt well on this course. There is some interest as lots of ancient trees, some wildlife in forms of foxes, rabbits and geese, the rough will hide your ball. You will find some brooks across the fairways (lots of losts balls in them), can look a bit repetitive on some holes but a very good challenge to select the right club for keeping one score low.
There is a half way hut with a bench, that serves both course: you will get a nice cup of tea and a good bacon roll. Also a portaloo hidden in the woods. Always useful.
There are very good deals for "mature" people (ie. just over £10.00 for a round Mond. to Frid.).
Pro Shop is friendly (well they know from my golf day beginning), it is quite well stocked.
The toilet facility are in the Park itself, a few minutes from the Proshop.
Driving range, chipping & putting area.
Clubhouse is a "make-do" thing as the original one burnt down a long time ago. Finally after a long wait a new one is being built at the present time. It will certainly be an attraction, very modern in design, with grassed roof, water fountain in front of the Clubhouse but in keeping with the Royal Parks specifications. There is and there will be some re-design of holes on either courses. Really looking forward to the opening which will be in the Spring of 2013 I believe.
A friendly & convenient place to play golf in the heart of Richmond Park, not that far from Central London or 15 minutes from Twickenham, a place where I return quite often.
Rusper - Worth more than just one visit
The course has a great layout, with difficult narrow holes coming midway through the round but that do not totally penalise you for veering far from the fairways.
Putting greens were good (even in wet conditions not too bad), the course kept well and the staff at sign in friendly.
Practise facilities are good enough with dirivng range and putting green.
Okay if you're in the area
I played the Princes course, which is the shorter of the two courses available to play here. In my opinion it is probably the nicer one of the two, but I have only played each course once. It takes you up to the higher part of the course and gives you excellent views of the park. It is also not as "up & down" as I seem to remember the Dukes course being.
I have to say that it was in very good condition, with very lush fairways and smooth greens.
The clubhouse does let it down a lot, there isn't much other than a small pro shop and a snack bar, but there are plans to build a new clubhouse at the other end of the park, so that should help the overall feel good factor.
One thing which is pretty annoying is that they will only accept one credit/debit card per group.
Sun shines on Richmond Park
Well kept secret in Richmond Park, a comprehensive golfing facility (OK from temporary accommodation) where on site staff are welcoming and friendly. New clubhouse plans are on display in the Cafe... it will be a nicer place to visit when completed. There's a couple of parkland courses to choose from (Princes Course is recommended). Although off temporary tees (which had seen better days) there was evidence of ongoing maintenance and greenkeeper activity was obvious. The course was otherwise well presented, mature trees adorned most holes, water was around but never c ame into play today, bunkers could have done with a little more sand. Greens were good, and the approaches were interesting, a good run out for a short game practice. Interesting Par 3s, a good challenge to club selection and shot vision... Not a long course but you will know that you have walked it, undulating would be over-simplification. Wide enough fairways to give most a good second/approach shot.
On course catering was available and is recommended. Post round cafe should not be missed, for a variety of reasons.
The course is set in a corner of the parkland and fabulous views are all around, surprisingly not too much by way of airplane noise, considering the location.
Well laid out courses, continually being improved, with new facilities promised in the near future, a good step out for all levels as everyone will get something from a visit.