The Huddle Park Golf & Recreation course is laid out within one of Johannesburg’s largest parks and it’s part of a grassland, woodland and wetland property extending to five hundred acres beside the suburbs of Linsfield and Orange Grove.
Bob Grimsdell designed the 54-hole complex at the original Huddle Park between 1948 and the late 1950s, fashioning the Blue, White and Yellow 18-hole courses. By the 1970s, the three municipal layouts were collectively attracting more than 150,000 rounds a year. Sadly, the golf facility closed and the holes then fell into disrepair.
On 1 November 2013, the Blue course re-opened again as a pay-and-play operation, with new greens and bunkers in operation after a comprehensive restoration by Golf Data. Notable holes include the shortest of the four par threes at the 154-yard, pond-protected 4th and the par five 14th in the most northerly part of the property, which plays to another water-fronted green.
The South African PGA Championship was held here twice during the calendar year in 1971 (February and November) with Tierie Britz winning both events. The second of those competitions was also the first non-racial Sunshine Tour event, where sixteen black professionals competed alongside American Lee Elder, who became the first black man invited to the Masters in 1975.
Huddle Park is a a community asset. When I played there i was struck by three things, length. how wet the course was and pace of play. It may have seemed longer because it was so wet. There were a half a dozen places where a significant detour was required. It is possible that this was an aberration as a result of recent wet weather. I did play on a Sunday afternoon. Pace was poor, but what was worse was seeing hole gaps and not being waved thru. Lastly, the greens were real hairy. I am surprised that this course made the top 100