Stoke Park golf: Gareth Snow plays a round
PUBLISHED: 15:05 26 August 2016 | UPDATED: 15:05 26 August 2016
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Gareth Snow gets around a bit: but the highlight this month was a visit to the stunning greens and fairways of Stoke Park
It would be something if I could claim that the Daniel I arrived with at Stoke Park was Daniel Craig, the Bond star who’s been spotted using the gym there this year and, of course, where he filmed the dramatic ending of Layer Cake on the steps of the Mansion House.
But no, this was the very likeable but non-famous Daniel, a close mate and as keen as I was to try out the Stoke Park golf facilities and follow in the footsteps of the classic 1964 Bond scenes from Goldfinger where the master villain – aided by Oddjob as caddie – takes on Sean Connery.
Even without all the Bond connections, it’s impossible not to be impressed by the beauty of the grounds, courses and the stunning hotel on arrival. The splendid locker rooms catch the eye, but since you’ve already seen the immaculate course that’s where you want to head.
The club benefits from 27 holes and we played the front 9 on The Colt and the back 9 on the Lane Jackson. We were extremely well looked after by the staff in the pro-shop and especially by the very helpful chaps in the starter hut. A special mention here for Paul in the starter hut because he gave us all the advice we needed and some local knowledge about the course.
The Stoke Park buggies are equipped with state of the art GPS to give you course information and accurate yardages. This turns out to be a really helpful tool, particularly on a first visit.
The Colt benefits from newly reshaped bunkers that are strategically placed, giving every hole here real character. It provides a stern but fair challenge. We should admit that Daniel and I visited a number of the bunkers… with mixed results! There are some spectacular holes, and none more so than Redbud, modelled on the 16th at Augusta National. Can I just brag a bit here and say I was very pleased to walk away from it with a Par 3! The fast but true greens are as perfect as you can get.
Keeping your eye on the golf isn’t always easy though as the course sits in some spectacular scenery and on the day of our visit was drenched in summer sunshine. But it’s easy to see why this course would be a lure at any time of the year.
Plus, of course, there are the other facilities to investigate – we replenished our energy with some delicious club sandwiches in the hotel garden. The golf here is magnificent and provides a superb day out.
Stoke Park golf
Visitors and hotel guests can play the course, there are day rates, plus twilight sessions until end of October, including for juniors. Bring your own equipment or choose from the rental range.
Full Golf Membership comes with use of the Club’s 27 hole championship golf course, driving range, putting green, and short game practice area. You also receive complimentary range balls, tees and pencils and reduced rates on buggy and trolley hire.
New golfers can take out Academy Membership, where Stoke Park’s dedicated professionals teach the fundamentals and help members achieve a handicap. Academy membership includes playing rights for nine holes per day on the Lane Jackson holes (19-27), access to the club’s five star practice facilities and two hours of private tuition.
There are also golf and health packages (with or without tennis) which include use of the state-of-the-art gymnasium, fitness studios, indoor pool and preferential rates at the award-winning Spa.
See stokepark.com, tel 01753 717171.
Stoke Park, Park Road, Stoke Poges Buckinghamshire SL2 4PG