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Goldfields West

Carletonville, Gauteng
Carletonville, Gauteng
Rankings
  • AddressCarletonville, 2499, South Africa

The gold-mining town of Carletonville in western Gauteng is one of the richest gold-producing places on earth and the golf course at Goldfields West Golf Club lies around nine miles to the south east of the town in the Wonderfontein Valley.

The golf facility came about during the development of the mine in the late 1940s when the owners called in Bob Grimsdell – former Royal Johannesburg professional – to set out a course with Johnny van der Ness, a mining official, as a recreational pursuit for the workforce.

In this extract from the book South African Golf Courses: A Portrait of the Best author Stuart McLean writes: “Playing the course is more than just a round of golf – it is a delightful stroll in a relaxing, unspoiled environment. The variety of wildlife is a special feature of this golf club; herds of buck roam the course, often galloping across the fairways in front of you, and monkeys play in the trees, Flocks of waterbirds inhabit the dams on the course.

Goldfields West is to all outward appearances a gentle round of golf. It has a strong starting stretch and an equally fierce finishing hole, but for the most part it is not a particularly taxing layout. The fairways are generously wide in most cases and the greens are reasonably large and receptive. Only two par-fours exceed 375 metres; the five par-fives are short by modern standards and are all approximately the same length.”

Holes are routed around a nature reserve and fairways are generally wide and open with water only coming into play between the par four holes at the 3rd and 7th. Two of the one-shotters on the card are found here; the green for the long 4th sits behind a stream whilst the 162-yard 6th sports a large protective dam in front of the putting surface.

On the back nine, a couple of holes take the eye. The 14th is a medium length par four that doglegs left to a green guarded on the left by a large bunker and the 469-yard closing hole is a tough uphill par four that also doglegs left to a green with a large sand trap to the left of the putting surface.

The gold-mining town of Carletonville in western Gauteng is one of the richest gold-producing places on earth and the golf course at Goldfields West Golf Club lies around nine miles to the south east of the town in the Wonderfontein Valley.

The golf facility came about during the development of the mine in the late 1940s when the owners called in Bob Grimsdell – former Royal Johannesburg professional – to set out a course with Johnny van der Ness, a mining official, as a recreational pursuit for the workforce.

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Course Architect

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Bob Grimsdell

Bob Grimsdell was a skilful professional golfer and the pioneer of golf course architecture in South Africa whose legacy has been largely overlooked outside of his adopted homeland.

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