Top courses in worst condition

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sunshine

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I’m interested in the flip side of the best conditioned course thread. What top courses have you played that were really poor and failed to live up to expectations for a good course.

Not interested in the local goat track, just big names.

Also, don’t count greens maintenance week. Every course needs to do this at some point.
 
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sunshine

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I’ll start with Porthcawl. Middle of summer and the greens were shaggy and slow, the aprons too, so couldn’t play running shots into the green.
 

Imurg

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Stoke Park - Stoke Poges...
Entirely uninspiring apart from the "Clubhouse" which was utterly fantastic
The course was very ordinary, quite rough around the edges, greens were slow, tees were scabby and just poor for the expectation level.
If we didn't have a cheap voucher I wouldn't have been happy paying more than 30 quid for it
To be fair it was after a pretty wet spell but.......
 

Lord Tyrion

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None, thankfully. All have met expectations in terms of conditioning. I appreciate the fun in the thread is the courses that have let you down but if none have ....................
 

Banchory Buddha

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Spey valley. people rave about it (because of the scenery I think?) , but every time I've played it it's been in poor condition. I keep going back thinking I'm missing something, but nope, always disappoints
 
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Not me, but a friend played at Slaley Hall last week. He said that the greens were worse than our fairways. The club accepted a booking for eight green fees, at £75 a head & four buggies. When they arrived they were told that buggies weren't on that week & hadn't been when they booked. They were, understandably, not impressed with this & managed to negotiate the green fees down to the residents rate of £40, plus eight pints of lager.

The course is hosting at least two pro tournaments this summer so I would imagine that they will be making an effort to improve things. The problem with both courses is the height above sea level inhibiting early season growth & poor drainage. The course bears the distinction of being the only venue that has ever had a European Tour event completely cancelled. I attended that event for three days before seeing any golf only for it to be called off after more heavy overnight rain before day four.

I've played there a few times & never found it in particularly good condition.
 

Liverpoolphil

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Walton Heath about 2 years ago

Turned up for a big charity run by Andrew Coltart and full of the standard golf celebs

The fairways were a complete mess , they were burnt out , tried to be scarified, not much grass - it was awful

Organisers went mental- stand up arguments with the GM about why they weren’t informed of the state of the course

Not long after the Head Green and GM both were fired/left and also the club decided to spend £3m on fairway watering
 

Backache

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Princes was a bit scruffy around the edges when I played it. Not exactly poor condition but not really what I was expecting.
 

patricks148

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Spey valley. people rave about it (because of the scenery I think?) , but every time I've played it it's been in poor condition. I keep going back thinking I'm missing something, but nope, always disappoints
Tbh there hands are tied with the very short growing season. Not to forget its so under funded its a surprise to me it stays open. Greens always look shocking, but on the whole they always play way better than they look
 

stefanovic

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I blame climate change which leads to thicker grass and poorer greens.
Played a local goat track this week and no way the greens are going to be in good condition anytime soon.
 

IanM

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I’ll start with Porthcawl. Middle of summer and the greens were shaggy and slow, the aprons too, so couldn’t play running shots into the green.
Very surprised about Portcawl. Always play winter open in Feb and the condition always good. (which summer was this?)

Played Ashburnham a few months ago, looked very tatty for there. Hope they've got it back to normal now.

Mind you, we had 2 degrees over night, no grass is growing with that as a night minimum!!
 
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sunshine

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Very surprised about Portcawl. Always play winter open in Feb and the condition always good. (which summer was this?)

Played Ashburnham a few months ago, looked very tatty for there. Hope they've got it back to normal now.

Mind you, we had 2 degrees over night, no grass is growing with that as a night minimum!!
I bet you the August 2020 condition was no better than Feb. Nothing to do with greens maintenance (we checked). We played Ashburnham the following day and their greens were excellent.

What I heard from a local is that they can get the Porthcawl greens in great shape for tournaments, but the members aren't that bothered about them being good day to day, which surprised me.
 
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sunshine

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Walton Heath about 2 years ago

Turned up for a big charity run by Andrew Coltart and full of the standard golf celebs

The fairways were a complete mess , they were burnt out , tried to be scarified, not much grass - it was awful

Organisers went mental- stand up arguments with the GM about why they weren’t informed of the state of the course

Not long after the Head Green and GM both were fired/left and also the club decided to spend £3m on fairway watering
That's shocking, sounds discourteous / arrogant from the club.

I know they have 36 holes, but £3m on irrigation sounds a huge amount! I would have guessed £2m.
 
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sunshine

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Stoke Park - Stoke Poges...
Entirely uninspiring apart from the "Clubhouse" which was utterly fantastic
The course was very ordinary, quite rough around the edges, greens were slow, tees were scabby and just poor for the expectation level.
If we didn't have a cheap voucher I wouldn't have been happy paying more than 30 quid for it
To be fair it was after a pretty wet spell but.......
Amazing clubhouse, average course, sums up the place perfectly. It just trades on the James Bond connection.
 

Depreston

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Not me, but a friend played at Slaley Hall last week. He said that the greens were worse than our fairways. The club accepted a booking for eight green fees, at £75 a head & four buggies. When they arrived they were told that buggies weren't on that week & hadn't been when they booked. They were, understandably, not impressed with this & managed to negotiate the green fees down to the residents rate of £40, plus eight pints of lager.

The course is hosting at least two pro tournaments this summer so I would imagine that they will be making an effort to improve things. The problem with both courses is the height above sea level inhibiting early season growth & poor drainage. The course bears the distinction of being the only venue that has ever had a European Tour event completely cancelled. I attended that event for three days before seeing any golf only for it to be called off after more heavy overnight rain before day four.

I've played there a few times & never found it in particularly good condition.
This sprang to my mind played it a couple times last years

Bunkers were a shambles as well as the above
 

Crazyface

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I think you know the place I could mention on this thread. Everything was rubbish about the place, even down to the response I received from the secretary when I complained to him via e mail. And yes I told a board member in no uncertain terms what I thought of the course at the time of playing. Well, he'd hit his ball into us on the way round so deserved the double rocket he got.
 
Thread starter #19

sunshine

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I think you know the place I could mention on this thread. Everything was rubbish about the place, even down to the response I received from the secretary when I complained to him via e mail. And yes I told a board member in no uncertain terms what I thought of the course at the time of playing. Well, he'd hit his ball into us on the way round so deserved the double rocket he got.
Just to clarify, the thread is about the condition of the course, not the car park 😬
 

evemccc

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I’ll start with Porthcawl. Middle of summer and the greens were shaggy and slow, the aprons too, so couldn’t play running shots into the green.
I played it in the summer of 2021 on a twilight deal, and thought everything about it was top class..right up there with the very best I’ve played, with the only exception being the slowish greens
 
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