Abridge Golf & Country Club was formed in the early 1960s and has come a long way since The South Essex Jewish Golfing Society decided they needed a golf course. Today Abridge is indisputably one of the best courses in the county of Essex and, to finally herald the club’s coming of age, Open Championship Regional Qualifying was staged at Abridge for the first time in 2009.
Despite being located close to the M25, Abridge is shielded from the motorway and is situated in a pleasantly undulating area of natural beauty in the heart of the county and this was the first course designed by Henry Cotton.
At around 6,700 yards it’s not the longest course in Essex, but with a number of surprising elevation changes and several plateau greens you can factor in an additional several hundred yards to the overall length. Be prepared for a testing challenge regardless of your golfing standard.
Abridge is renowned for exceptional greens and well maintained fairways, coupled with some great golf holes. The 10th, 11th and 12th holes are known as the Abridge 'Amen Corner' – all three par fours stretch out beyond 400 yards with out of bounds all the way on the left. The favourite hole for many will be the par three 2nd and the introduction of a pond that eats into the green on the right hand side is an exciting feature.
Essex boasts around ninety golf courses and Abridge Golf & Country Club is certainly in the county's premier league.
Abridge is an immaculately manicured golf course overlooking some pretty countryside in West Essex near to Epping Forest. Costly improvements have recently been made to install an irrigation system and when we played, in high summer, it’s condition was nigh perfect. Whether the drainage system can cope in winter with the predominant Essex clay subsoil, I don’t know.
The holes make the most of the undulating terrain with a number of drives from raised tees to greens that are similarly raised, a design feature that became a little repetitive.
I much prefer holes that I can see clearly from the tee, excluding the odd dogleg, and in this respect there were some excellent holes. My favourites were number 7, a picturesque uphill short par4, 11 a scenic long par4 across a valley with danger lurking on the left, 13 the best par5 on the course with exactly the right balance between risk and reward and 14 a seriously challenging stroke index one requiring two mighty blows, the second across a pond, to reach the green.
We enjoyed our round at Abridge for it is a solid test of golf, although in my view there are too many ordinary holes for it to justify a higher rating, despite its excellent condition.
A lovely course, despite being a lovely sunny day it rained a lot the day before so there was 3 temporary greens but I didn't spoil what was a great day. Greens were fantastic as were the fairways, it played very long as no roll on the fairways. Great facilities, well worth a day out if you are within 1 hour of the course.
Definitely one of the best courses in Essex. As a member I'm delighted to see the investment in the irrigation system produce such great results with the course greener than ever before despite the wonderfully hot summer. The greens are in tip top condition and you need to have a putting stroke to match.
Played this course last year and went back, they have done loads of work on the course and its so beautiful one of the best ones in Essex in my opinion. Fairways are like carpet due to new irrigation system they put in. Golf pro in the pro shop was really friendly and gave us some good tips. The course is really challenging, Some long par 4s especially around Amen corner, however its really rewarding when you get it right, The greens are extremely fast and true but reading them and judging speed is a trick.....make sure you go on the putting green before you go out. It caught a few of us out to start with.
I was in Essex this week and as Abridge was ranked 4th in the county decided to make this my first course in Essex. A good welcome and the course to myself mean't I managed the whole course on a twilight fee. Overall course condition was not the best; greens were being worked on and therefore slow and whilst the fairways were all nicely mown they were very patchy/poor in condition. Very close to the M25 so a constant noise. Thought the front nine more interesting than the back. Downhill tee shots and uphill second shots seemed a theme meaning quite a few shots to blind greens. My favourite holes were the par 3 2nd (a nice short hole guarded by a small pond) and the 6th, a short dog-leg par 4