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Hadley Wood

Barnet, England
Barnet, England
Rankings
  • AddressHadley Wood Golf Club Beech Hill, Barnet EN4 0JJ, UK

The course at Hadley Wood Golf Club is routed across an old deer park (known as Enfield Chase), which was the hunting ground of Henry V in the Middle Ages. The golf club was founded in 1922 and the Alister MacKenzie-designed course opened for play the same year.

Hadley Wood is one of MacKenzie’s earliest south of England designs and was laid out at a time when the Dr was in partnership with Harry Colt. Here in leafy North London, under the watchful gaze of the Russell Mansion (the historic Georgian clubhouse, built in 1781), you will find one of the finest examples of an authentic Alister MacKenzie design. Raised plateux greens (several multi-tiered), bold, strategic bunkering and, most importantly, a design that is engaging as well as challenging.

Laid out in two distinct loops, with a selection of solid two-shot holes, each hole differing in character, requiring shots utilising every club in the bag, Hadley Wood was perhaps the blueprint for MacKenzie’s thirteen “essential features” of an ideal golf course. With par set classically at 72 and measuring a healthy 6,517 yards from the back tees, it is no surprise that Hadley Wood was used for Open Championship Regional Qualifying between 2000 and 2005.

There are numerous notable holes, but one in particular is considered the Hadley Wood “signature” hole. The 10th is certainly the most photographed, but, ironically, it’s not a MacKenzie original. Nevertheless, we think the Dr would approve of this cracking 185-yard one-shot hole which requires a forced carry of some 100 yards across a lake where a ring of three cleverly placed bunkers lurk to the front and left of the green to catch the “bail-out” tee shot. One of our favourite holes is the 17th, another par three, which is ringed with MacKenzie bunkering. It stretches out to 169 yards from the back tees and the greensite is set on rising ground on the opposing side of a ditch.

We heartily recommend Hadley Wood to every golfer that is interested in studying Golden Age golf course architecture. We think Hadley Wood is the jewel in the crown of North London’s parkland golf courses.

Tom Doak made a point of playing Hadley Wood in 2016 and awarded the course a rating of five out of ten. He commented as follows in his Christmas 2017 Confidential Guide update:

“North of London but just inside the M25 ring road, the parkland Hadley Wood plays down and back up a couple of steep hills, with the watery short 10th in the fold at the bottom. The club has been slowly restoring MacKenzie’s bunkering, but the course would be far more attractive if they would remove a bunch of trees for better views to and from the beautiful clubhouse, built in 1781.”

The course at Hadley Wood Golf Club is routed across an old deer park (known as Enfield Chase), which was the hunting ground of Henry V in the Middle Ages. The golf club was founded in 1922 and the Alister MacKenzie-designed course opened for play the same year.

Hadley Wood is one of MacKenzie’s earliest south of England designs and was laid out at a time when the Dr was in partnership with Harry Colt. Here in leafy North London, under the watchful gaze of the Russell Mansion (the historic Georgian clubhouse, built in 1781), you will find one of the finest examples of an authentic Alister MacKenzie design. Raised plateux greens (several multi-tiered), bold, strategic bunkering and, most importantly, a design that is engaging as well as challenging.

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Course Architect

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Alister MacKenzie

Alister MacKenzie was born in England, but his parents were Scottish and the family holidayed every year close to where his father was raised in the traditional Clan MacKenzie lands of Sutherland.

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