South Staffordshire Golf Club Review

By: Melvyn Davies | Thu 05 Oct 2017 | Comments

Golfshake ambassador visited South Staffordshire Golf Club, or South Staffs as it is more commonly known in Sep 2017.  Found out how he got on.

South Staffordshire Golf Club is a private parkland course found in 1892 making it one of the oldest golf clubs in the Midlands and is located about 3 miles from the centre of Wolverhampton.

Its original location was Penn but moved to its current location in Tettenhall in 1908 and was originally designed by Harry Vardon in 1908 and has since been tweaked by some of the greats of course design in Harry Colt, James Braid and more recently Donald Steel.

South Staffs Clubhouse

Pre Round Thoughts

Upon arrival we headed for the well stocked Pro Sop that was opened in 2006 by Ryder Cup hero Ian Woosnam. Our next stop was the 10 acre practice area with the added bonus of being able to hit off grass.

Once done there we headed for the traditional looking clubhouse where we were greeted by Sue LeBeau the Club manager of 10 years and an added bonus of Peter Baker Director of Golf. Peter has 3 European Tour wins to his name and was also in the Ryder Cup team of 1993 at the Belfry  which USA won 15-13, Peter did however win 3 of his 4 matches. He was also one of Ian Woosnams vice captains at the K Club in 2006. Peter is also making his Seniors debut in October at the Forest of Arden in the European Senior Masters.

Both Sue and Peter were more than willing to fill me in on the clubs heritage and some of the events the club have hosted. Sitting there listening to them whilst looking out onto the course really whetted my appetite for what lay ahead.

Golf Course Highlights

South Staffs

The main thing you notice here is that the greens are not the largest but are well protected and really fast and tricky. They are probably the quickest greens I have putted on all year and considering the recent weather it would be interesting to putt on them in the summer at their quickest.

The opening hole is a par 5 just over 500 yards long with a slight dogleg to the left that requires a straight but not necessary long tee shot, whether going for the green in 2 or 3 your approach shot needs to be very accurate as the green has bunkers left and right and is very narrow, a par here is a great start to your round.

3 and 4 are both just over 300 yards long but don't be accurate tee shot will still leave an approach shot to well protected narrow, tricky greens that are very fast.

The 6th is a great par 3 with only a short-mid iron needed to find a green protected by 4 bunkers and surrounded by trees.

The last 3 holes of the front 9 are all par 4's that like the rest of the front 9 require accuracy over length even though 7 and 9 are over 400 yards long. Tree lined again and if found a difficult approach will still be ahead to well protected, small, tricky greens.

South Staffs bunkers

The back 9 starts with a tough par 4 that doglegs quite severely to the left that requires a tee shot long enough to give a view of the green for your second, further right opens the view up but does make the shot longer. Only 1 bunker awaits and the green is relatively large compared to others.

13 and 14 again are tight, tree lined holes which again have narrow well protected greens making pars here a truly great return.

South Staffs

15 is the longest par 3 at 165 yards. Another well protected green with bunkers left and right awaits and long is better than short here as anything sort will get eaten up by a bunker or even roll off the green, saying that another bunker awaits behind the green and will leave a tricky shot to the green running from back to front.

17 and 18 are both short par 4's but again don't be fooled by the yardage. Straight tee shots are needed to leave a short-mid iron into small well protected greens. 18 has 3 bunkers to the left and 1 to the right. A great finishing hole that can offer up a birdie but can also punish any a mishit shot. 18 has the added bonus of the wonderful backdrop of the well established clubhouse. A great finish to one of the best courses I have had the pleasure to play.

Post Round Thoughts and Verdict

The course was in fantastic condition from tee to green. Well presented bunkers, lovely manicured fairways and really fast greens. A true but enjoyable test for all levels of ability.  The back 9 is definitely the longer and tougher 9 with the front 9 easing you in.

This course is a great course for all golfers to play. It's not the longest but don't be fooled as it is tight and the greens will be a challenge for the best to pick both lines and get the speed. The last few holes even though it was raining still played great and the greens didn't really show any signs of slowing down.  Highlty rated and well worth visiting.

Overall Rating: 9 out of 10

Course (Conditions): 9
Course (Hole variety/layout): 9
Course (Challenge/Difficulty): 9
Club facilities & 19th/clubhouse: 8
Practice Facilities: 9
Friendliness/Hospitality: 10
Course (green condition): 10
Pace of play: 9
Value for money: 8

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