18 reviews of Sweetwoods Park Golf Club
We played this course on Friday, 29.8.14, on a society day where apparently 3 societies were playing. Breakfast was good. Pro shop was ok although individual serving in there seemed largely oblivious to customers in the shop ! The course is a natural beauty with some fantastic holes on it although the grounds were pitiful on the day. Groundstaff were strange in so much as cutting fairways & near to the green in the middle of the round. Young chap who assisted as the starter was a very pleasant chap.
The management and condition of the course was stunning. The attention to detail and the assistance offer pre-event by the golf team was reassuring an totally professional. The professional manner in which your Clubhouse Manager conducted the welcoming hospitality, dining room presentation, quality, quantity delivery and timing of the food and drinks were exemplary. I extend this opinion of all the 70ish members of our society, they were entertained thoroughly well and your entire team are a credit to you. I am a member of another golf club and held the role of meeter and greeter for societies, sadly we do not compare with the level of hospitality your team displayed. In business I attend many societies, none compare!"
This place is a lottery - you might get lucky and play on a day when they haven't managed to pack the course out with as many groups as they can with no regard for pace of play or customer enjoyment. Or you might well end up with a 7 hour round on the cards, with no interest from management in alleviating the situation.
Today, it was the latter.
It was monthly medal Sunday, which in Sweetwoods parlance means jamming up the course with a hoard of inept members, all playing off the back tees, but most of whom cutting a convincing image of individuals who have never taken a golf lesson in their lives. Characteristic of this sort of course, the members can't play golf for love nor money, but they love to wield the singular bylaw of "we don't have to let anyone play through because we're members playing in a competition" as evidence of their right to inflict misery on all other paying players on the course.
When we'd arrived, we paid for our scheduled tee time, with no mention of anything untoward on the course. It hadn't occurred to anyone in the pro-shop to notify us that our slot had been pushed back a full half hour due to a fog delay, and an ominously interminable pace of progress from the members playing in their competition. This was only revealed to us when we stepped up to the first tee, to find 4 other groups waiting to tee off at the time we were supposed to be heading out.
We managed to play just 3 holes, before we hit a log jam on the 4th where there were no fewer than 3 groups playing the hole, and a further 4 groups waiting on the tee (soon joined by the several groups rapidly descending on this tee behind us). These groups had already been reliably informed by a self-righteous lady member that she would have no intention of letting anyone play through. Nice attitude. Let's just adhere to the "rules" and ignore common sense. Judging by how seriously these people were taking themselves, they seemed to be entertaining the illusion they were playing in the Masters, and all of the rest of us were their admiring spectators.
Clearly the round was untenable - this was never going to finish. So my group, and most of the other groups we encountered, were obliged to walk off the course after just a handful of holes played.
Indignantly, we returned to the clubhouse to air our rightful frustration. We, like others we spoke to, had had a choice of where to play on this, one of the few remaining pleasant Sunday's in 2011. But we had come here, because we had been reassured the course was running clear, and we should encounter no problems enjoying a round of golf at a leisurely pace. As we walked into the pro-shop, we observed many groups still walking up to the first tee - the course managers seemed to think it was acceptable to continue to profit from any unsuspecting customers, who had no idea what they were letting themselves in for. This was shameless profiteering, with no hint of professionalism about it. This clearly isn't a golf course - just a factory line.
I asked to speak to the manager when I came into the pro-shop, who was unforthcoming, so was obliged to express my frustrations to the two assistants in the pro-shop - specifically, that they have no business allowing visitors to come to the course, and part with their money for a full 18 holes, knowing that the course was going to be rendered unplayable by the obvious litany of useless members turning the course into an interminable traffic jam. If you want to give the course over to your members for their medal - fine. But then tell any visitors that the course is closed. Don't try and have your cake and eat it. Eventually, an arrogant, pugnacious gentleman emerged from the office, to take issue with me expressing dissatisfaction with the state of affairs. He thought it was politic to respond with aggression rather than conciliation, and issued a string of irrelevant non-sequiturs to try and excuse their shoddy management.
I have encountered this situation once or twice before in the past, and when been obliged to complain, the course managers have duly apologised, issued a refund, and offered a free round in an attempt to preserve my custom. This course's attitude is clearly "take your money and hang the consequences".
Having shared this tale with various other friends, I have learned this is not unusual. The phrase "I will never play Sweetwoods again" is frequently uttered it seems - and the management of the course clearly couldn't care less.
A very enjoyabel and scenic course.
as this was the first time we played we had to continually check the stroke saver booklet to know where to aim.
Subsequently the round took longer than anticipated and although we skipped the 16th we had to play the 18th in the dark.
That said myself and my three friends all eally enjoyed the day.
The scebery is stunning in late autimn and I'd love to play here in the summer to see how far the ball will run and to see if the greens will hold a long iron approach.
Eeveryone me met (fellow players, pro shop and bar staff) were all very friendly and helpfull.
We will be back.
i come from the swale area of Kent, but have played here four times now, and is this a course to travel for.
It is in my eyes a "Hidden Gem". There is not a bad thing to say about your day here,from the moment you arrive , the natural beauty of your surroundings hit you.
The staff in both clubhouse and pro shop are so relaxed and informal,yet still attentive to your needs, I hate the old school snobbery of golf and to come to a quality course like this and be made to feel welcome by members and staff is highly commendable!!
The course is challenging and quirky , with plenty of twists and turns . The £27.50 green fee for wkd is good value for the quality of this course.
My only concern is that i hear that the club has been bought out , hopefully the new owners will continue to let this course keep its quirky charm and not tinker too much.
Best course i have played in Kent !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I must concur with the positive reports of other golfers here. having said that I don't know hoy anyone can say they "enjoyed" the greens which wree clearly desigend by Satan. O.K. I had the yips - it was my fault- and I guess if you've always wanted to get the feel of Augusta, this is the place. Above all I think the green fees are a real bargain as I'd expect to pay £10-£15 more for a course of this quality.
What a fantastic course. The quality of the tee boxes, fairways, greens and even the rough was impressive. The holes are well laid out and well thought through...each hole presents a different challenge, some holes require more accuracy than others, some require more distance, but all told, a good course to play for all abilities in my opinion. We played on a bank holiday special offer (2 for 1) which was amazing value, however, i think this course is good value at full price. The greens were among the best ive ever played and putting was a pelasure. The bunkers were full of good soft sand and the fariways were manicured and
undulated as you would expect from a great quality course. The clubhouse was friendly and welcoming, we had a breakfast which was reasonable value and good quality. The pro-shop is well equipped and the staff in there are friendly too which makes a great change to the norm!! All in all, i would claim this course to be one of the best ive played and certainly among the best in the area. The only complaint i could possibly have is that they did not have any course guides in the shop, but there is a handy little map on the scorecard and a couple of the holes have handy monitors on the tee box so that you can see when then group in front have cleared the fariway. Great course...will be playing it again.
Fantastic golf course, will suit all levels of golfers. Greens will be some of the best you will putt on, very true. Staff very helpful, friendly and very welcoming, not stuck in the 1900's. Well worth the green fee.
Beautiful course with a good mix of short, mid and long holes. Some 'challenging' dog legs which were described, rather harshly, by my playing partner as Mickey Mouse holes. The mid section did involve a section of slow play due to the par 3 holes and driveable par 4s and that led to my only complaint about Sweetwoods. The 4 ball behind us were low handicappers (and club members) no doubt. The course marshall in his coloured cart, challenged us on our slow play and to let the group behind through. We were only slow because of the hold up and if they went through us they wouldnt be able to tee off anyhow. The cheek of some people! Excellent facilities and a course I'll be playing again.
Sweetwoods Park provides the rare combination of good facilities, a friendly welcome and value for money. Unfortunately, word seems to have got out and play at peak times is often as much a test of patience as skill.
The course itself will provides a good, yet fair, challenge, with many undulations (particularly on the front 9) and water playing a role on at least half the holes to some extent. The only down side to the set up is there are too many short par 4s to provide a really stern test if memory serves only two off the Yellow tees measure 400 yards or more. That said, what it lacks in length it compensates for in hazards, so more thought than just a blast with the Driver is often required.
The course is maintained to a consistently high standard all year-round although the use of winter mats - particularly on the par 3s - seems to encroach further into the year here than at other courses.
Off-course the clubhouse offers a decent range of food and drink, while the patio overlooking the 18th green provides a fine setting to relive the days triumphs (or not as the case may be) on a summers evening.
In short, if you can avoid the busiest times, a must play.
Played on Friday 16th June. Paid £22 as a Member's Guest. There was due to be a PRO tournament on the Monday Tuesday 19th/20th, so the course was in excellent condition. Greens were superb and very very fast. When you play the course just remember to stay below the hole !!!!! On a couple of greens, putting downhill a slight tap just got the ball to the hole. If the ball didn't drop and it caught the slope you could easily be 10-20ft past it !!!!!. There are alot of blind T shots, which personally I don't like. I don't mind not seeing the green when T'ing off, but I do like to see the landing area. Only other gripe is there a a few short Par 4's. 6th 274yds / 8th 332yds / 10th 322 yds / 16th 288yds. Seemed to get a backlog around 5th / 6th / 7th being a Par 3(125yds) then Par 4 (274yds) and 7th a Par 3 (164yds. All that said there are some very nice holes. 5th & 7th are nice Par 3's. The 5th is over a small pond and the 7th is over a valley. 14th is Stroke Index 1, and it is TOUGH. Dogleg left, with 2 streams running across the fairway. Once negotiated you then have and iron int othe green with trees at teh entrance, giving probably only 20ft wide gap. Very nice surroundings, and lovely relaxed clubhouse. All in all a nice course and one I will be returning to in the very near future.
A truly stunning course - great views, fast greens and fun to play. First half is hilly but 2nd half flattens out - thoroughly enjoyed my day
I have played Sweetwoods several times since it opened. When it first opened it was pretty unimpressive. The greens, fairays and general condition was poor.
However everything has improved and Sweetwoods is now a good test. The greens have improved beyond belief. The rest of the course also shows that the greenkeepers have been hard at work to make this excellent value for money. Well worth a visit.
First impressions were dented by the guy in the pro shop being abbrupt and rude.
The course was in good condition t, the greens were bullet fast. This course is very hilly and will tire most players. There is a lot of water in play and a course guide book is a must.
Not my favourite course, but worth a visit.
great course, superb condition and friendly staff. the course is a wonderful test of golf and is in great nick. the scenery is second to none. from the beautiful view from the 1st to the daunting drive on the last it is a pleasure to play. also had my first ever eagle on a par 5 (the 3rd) which helps.
2for 1 offers on mon and wed afternoons so 2 can play for 24 quid. play it now
all round a very enjoyable round of golf.I found the fairways in good condition and the rough forgiving.the greens were lightning fast which took me by surprise untill the 4th hole.lovely views,plenty of challenging tee shots and a nice variety of different hole types.altogether very pleasurable.
A superb and challenging course, with stunning views and hospitable members. A tricky opening hole is followed by a straightforward 2nd and 3rd (unless off the back tees!) The rest of the front nine has you going through the bag with lay-up shots, OOB avoidance and awkward putts a-plenty! The 10th leads you into a false sense of security before the dogleg 11th and danger laden 12th snap up any wayward shots. The 13th and 14th are two very long and very difficult par 5s that require excellent drives and intelligent 2nd shots. A long par 3, short par 4, awkward par 3 and excellent par 4, finish the round off very nicely. Anyone walking off the 18th having played to their handicap, will deserve the pleasure of the 19th.
A beautiful course both in terms of its views, particularly from the 4th tee and fairway, and in its layout. Accesible to the high handicapper, whilst still providing a challenge to the low handicapper. The first 10 holes are on the hilly side, providing some physical challege as well as a golfing one, whilst from the 11th it does flatten out somewhat. There are however two challenging par 5's on the back nine, the 13th and 14th. Overall an excellent course, set in beautiful parkland. It has good clubhouse facilities and it is certainly not a "stuffy" club house, and provides a warm welcome.
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