A secluded stretch of delightful parkland to discover on the Staffordshire/West Midlands border, Druids Heath is a traditional members club offering a very friendly welcome to all visitors and a peaceful ‘away from it all’ playing experience.
This attractively tree-lined, well-drained mid-length layout provides a challenging all year round test for golfers of all abilities, the course is well manicured and is laden with plenty of strategically placed bunkers to catch any misplaced tee shots or approaches. Opened for play in 1974, Druids Heath has a mature look that belies a relatively young existence.
Three par fives in the opening half including the first, a beautiful hole and the very epitome of all that is good about Druids Heath. A gently curving fairway, inviting for the shot shaper with two well-placed cross bunkers in driver range and two more guarding the entrance to the green – three accurate shots are needed to achieve par. The course goes on to follow a path that twists and turns around the woodland surrounds, no two holes ever seem to play in the same direction consecutively, so whatever breezes are about deserve close scrutiny.
The shorter par 34 back nine might just make good scoring harder to come by. Druid’s official signature hole is included, the dog leg par four 12th really does test your shot making capabilities, a tee shot to the left-hand side of the fairway offers the best chance of reaching the well guarded green in two with a long iron. Make a par here and it will feel like a birdie, as the putting surface also tests, speedy with subtle slopes. You get that sort of challenge and quality across the full layout, with only the severest of wintery conditions preventing the use of full greens.
The par threes play a starring back nine role as well, the club introduced revetted faces to their greenside traps on the short 11th a couple of years ago with great success, now they also appear elsewhere on the course. Not required on the tiny 14th just yet (below), this one is well protected enough with a small and very sloping green, potential three-putt territory.
A beautiful final hole too, tree-lined with fairway banking and a further tricky green to conquer, but the view on approach is lovely, to a bush and shrub surrounded green in front of the clubhouse (main image).
MG Pick: 16th 203 yards Par 3
A big downhill par three test that requires an accurate tee shot to a narrow green with two freshly revetted faced bunkers short to catch any misplaced shots. The open aspect will pose club selection issues, a driver isn’t out of the question on a windy day!
Druids Heath offers excellent warm-up facilities consisting of two putting greens, a chipping green, practice fairways and a driving net. The clubhouse is a decent size and has the capability to cope with large societies and there is a patio area overlooking the uphill 18th green. A warm welcome awaits from all, along with great service and the food is as generously priced as you will find in any golf club. With a brand new chef in residence, the quality and choice on the menu is only set to improve further.