Founded in 1895, Handsworth Golf Club moved to its present location the following year. “Skilfully remodelled by Mr. Colt in 1920,” wrote Darwin. “Since the soil is good and light, Handsworth makes a capital winter course.”
I have to admit it.... I used to be a member here. Ill be as objective in my review as possible.
Handsworth is a little oasis in the suburbs of west Birmingham. To get there you have to drive through the local housing estates and turn down a dead end street to enter through the modest entrance where you presented with this picturesque Golf Club. The club includes a small driving range (though usually to short for Driving on), chipping area, a pleasant putting green at the front of the clubhouses overlooking the first, a friendly staffed pro shop and a amply sized changing room.
The first is a nice short par 4 opener with water to the right, the bigger hitters could go for a power fade to reach the green but most just play a layup drive down the middle. The 2nd is an uphill par 4 with trees surrounding the right side and a heavily raised green. Most play up to the last bunker and allow a 100 yard odd chip on. Driving it over the last bunker is usually avoided.
My favourite run of holes were from 5 - 7. The 5th is a long dog leg part 5 that has a steeply raised green. A steady drive onto the brow of the fairway is the usual approach leaving you with a long uphill approach. Most big hitters try and carry the trees on the left to make the approach a bit easier. The raised green is also surrounded by dense forrest so distance and accuracy is key.
The 6th is a pleasant slight downhill par 3 with a sloped green. In summer anything past the hole can make for a difficult and quick downhill putt. Following that is par 4 downhill dog leg left with OB on the right hand side, not great for those with the slices!
Other highlights on the course include the par 4 13th, requiring a nice straight tee shot followed by a well defended green. The 14th par 4 (SI 1) provides a risk/reward shot for those big hitters to cut the corner. Playing at 433 yards a par is a very reasonable score.
The finishing hole provides a downhill view of the fairway with the clubhouse in view. The raised tee box provides a great finishing atmosphere which really makes you want to smash you're drive to gain as much distance. Hopefully straight and avoiding the right hand bunker. The par 5 is a birdie opportunity and can make for an exciting finish.
The clubhouse and members are very friendly and approachable and the overall spirit at the club is great. Granted there are stronger courses nearby like Edgbaston and Sutton Coldfield, but I would definitely recommend playing a round at Handsworth if you have the chance!