Review for Donnington Grove

Reviewer Score:


I played this today in good Summer conditions with my son and have to say it was much better than I expected. He played off the white tees which stretch out to 7,000 yards while I played off the more forgiving yellows. Some long stretches between holes definitely better with a buggy or at least a power caddy rather than carrying but even so, it's only about 4 times that you have a 2-3 minute(ish) brisk walk so it's not the end of the world especially with a trolley. I agree also that some of the bunkers looked a bit lacking in quality with a few fairway bunkers short on sand but the greenside ones played nicely with a nice coating of fine sand.

The large undulating greens were good, true and quick and there was plenty of interest with various run off areas around them also. The shaping of the holes up and down mostly gentle slopes (although the 8th is steeply downhill) was good and some really long challenging par 5's for the long hitters when playing off the tips. Fairways were also in pretty good condition. For good golfers who are long hitters, playing from the back tees is definitely a pretty good test with lots of bunkers in the landing areas presenting some challenge, albeit unless up near the lip the fairway bunkers are not too hard to get out of. My son who hits it reasonably long said he even preferred it to lovely Blackmoor which we played a few weeks ago as he prefers playing a longer more modern course to a very pretty but shorter heathland style design, although it's very hard to compare them as they are such different styles of golf course.

I think this course gets busy at weekends sometimes but mid week the pace of play was reasonably brisk, we weren't held up at all (and we usually play our 6,400 yard home course in 2.5 hours when in a two ball so we play at a reasonable pace), partly I think as the group in front had a buggy in the group and the third member walked quickly with their powerkaddy.

Overall, a modern design that in Summer conditions provides a good test for the good golfer especially when playing off the back tees. I'd give it somewhere between a 3.5 balls and 4 balls and I think it's well deserving of a decent placing in the Berkshire rankings and if I lived locally I would be very happy to be a member here.

Date: July 10, 2019

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