April 2024 sees Druids Heath celebrate its Golden Anniversary, having opened in 1974. From humble beginnings the club has grown rapidly and sits proudly amongst the very best private member clubs in the area.

The club was opened in April 1974 and was created by a partnership between local businessman Jim Ashwell and landowners Edgar Swain and his son Les. In the late 1960’s Jim Ashwell was looking for suitable land on which to build a golf course of his own design. He eventually found Nuttall’s Farm in Hobs Hole Lane, Aldridge. The land itself covered vast deposits of sand and gravel making it well drained and perfectly suited to the construction of a course that would remain playable during the winter months.

Outline planning permission was approved in 1969 for a change of use from agriculture to leisure. The departure of Jim Ashwell for a new business venture in Portugal followed by the death of Edgar Swain in 1985 caused the remaining partner, Les Swain to consider selling the club. He kept his promise of allowing the members ‘first refusal’ and consequently the members purchased the club in 1987.

Today the club boasts over 600 members and presents a well-manicured course with tree lined fairways, fast sloping greens and impressive views across open countryside. That sand base has really come into its own during the extended wet weather with Druids resolutely staying open whilst so many other courses close their doors.

Investment in the course has been ongoing with the latest Hydrowick drainage improving greens drainage and most of the bunkers being reconstructed to the highest of standards. Members enjoy an extensive competition schedule, lots of fun events and a choice of tees right throughout the year.

Award-winning catering and bar services make Druids Heath the ideal venue for private functions, golf days, corporate meetings and every kind of celebration. Food is fresh and delicious; the service is friendly and welcomes are warm. They have recently been awarded the TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence for creating memorable experiences so you’re in safe hands at Druids Heath.

General Manager Mark Allden (pictured) has been leading the operational team for over two years. GCMA Level III accredited he’s enjoyed a stellar career spanning the revolutionary Topgolf, Crown Golf, historic and enchanting Camberley Heath and Castle Royle, showcase site of The Club Company. Mark is passionate about Druids Heath and has built a team that delivers excellence for and behalf of its members.

Gary North is a highly reputable Head Chef who has been at Druids Heath for 7 years. Gary trained at Trinity College, Oxford and established his reputation at The Boat in Lichfield where he worked as Head Chef for 12 years. He has a dynamic partnership with Sous Chef Dean Williams who he has worked alongside for around 20 years.

Lisa Knight is the face of hospitality at Druids Heath and has enjoyed an extensive career in this industry. She was the Events & Catering Manager at Aston University for several years, the F&B Manager at Holiday Inn, and excelled in the same role at Calderfields Golf Club.

Course Manager Tom Boyd arrived at Druids Heath in 1999 so has almost 25 years’ experience on the course. His team is jam-packed with longstanding greenkeepers who enjoy over 130 years of combined experience accumulated at Druids. This is almost unique in the industry today and it means the people who look after the course have an intimate knowledge of how to produce the very best conditions.

Completing the management team is PGA Professional Nick Prentice who has recently extended the golf shop and built a state-of-the-art simulator so he can teach all year round and custom fit clubs. He has recently been joined by PGA Professional Steve Hughes who has relaunched the junior academy to great acclaim.

Druids Heath is all about people, aside from a top-class operational team and a host of dedicated volunteers it’s the friendly members that make the club so special. Back in 1974 it was a collaboration that started the club and it’s the partnerships that still drive the club forwards today.

The club has lots of special birthday gifts in store to celebrate their 50 years. The Golden Anniversary Stone has been cited towards the front of the club and this details some of the history associated with Druids. A 50-year flag will proudly fly from the flagpole this year, golden badges will adorn the gates and the greens will each boast an anniversary flagstick. Greene King have produced their very own Golden Ale draught to be served in branded glasses, which members will be able to buy at the 1974 price of 22p.

Druids Heath GC has come a long way in 50 years and everything about the infrastructure, the planning, the modern outlook and most of all the people suggests it will continue progressing for another 50.