“ Cranfield Golf Aademy in Stanmore and Edgware Golf Centre / Local golf centre in West London „
Although I agreed with a couple of the points made about the centre re: Putting Green, I felt that having been to the site on numerous occasions with family in toe, the facilities are both excellent and well managed. The Golf Course is in good condition and I have heard a number of people compliment the greens. Staff are professional and the centre offers very good coaching with the Cranfield Academy. I am a beginner but with some lessons can now hit a ball a fair distance! It was good to go to a place where as a beginner you didn't feel out of place especially as it attracts golfers of all levels. The academy are execellent with the kids and I would recommend them to anyone. Well worth a visit (or 2!) with the added advantage of being very fairly priced for both range balls and green fees.
One of the most visited municipal golf centres in Northwest London is the Stanmore & Edgware Golf Centre. I have been visiting this centre on and off for many years but only recently have been frequenting it on a weekly basis, and so have got to know it rather well, and thought I'd share my thoughts with any golf enthusiasts or people who are just interested in taking up the sport.
With six locations in the UK, all based in and around London, and with an academy in Spain and one opening soon in Poland, Cranfield Golf Academy operate the centre. Many facilities are available for use, with a large car park, comprehensive pro-shop, a huge Floodlit Range, Equipment Hire, Bunker/Approach and Putting practice areas and a Par 3 9-hole course. Although there is no bar or hot food available, there are vending machines with the usually high-priced drinks and snacks. The staff are always friendly and cheery, and always on hand to help you. The whole centre can get busy on weekends, with visiting families and junior/adult coaching lessons being the majority of the customers.
--Getting There and Surrounding Areas--
Located between the London suburbs of Stanmore and Edgware, the centre is off the A5 (Brockly Hill) and is very easy to find in the semi-rural surroundings. Public transport links are close by, but will require a short walk. If travelling by bus, you can get the 142, 107, 615 to the nearby junction of Canons Corner, and also the H12 or 324 to Stanmore Underground Station. I would advise a cab if you get to this station however, as this is a fair distance away from the centre. You can get the underground also to Stanmore Station via the Jubilee line or take the Northern line to Edgware central station, where you will be able to get a cab or bus to the centre. Like all of these type of golf centres, travelling in by car is the best option. With ample free parking (over 60 spaces) and easy to reach whether from London or the nearby A41 and M1, I have never had problems with parking or local traffic, which of course can get a little heavy in the rush hour.
For refreshments and drinks outside of the centre, at the nearby Canons corner there is a Tesco/Garage and a Drive-thu McDonalds, with also a parade of shops opposite of the Tesco. Further afield in Stanmore and Edgware town centres, there are numerous restaurants and bars for your refreshment. It is also worth noting that Edgware College is nearby to the Canons corner junction, and does make the Tesco's and McDonalds busy with teenagers and students around rush hour times.
Stanmore & Edgware Golf Centre, Brockley Hill, Stanmore, Middlesex, London. HA7 4LR
Opening Times - 8am to 10pm Weekdays, 8am to 9pm Weekends
--Prices and Parking--
As I have already mentioned, car parking is free and there is plenty of space for customers of the centre only. There are always groundsmen and staff around so you can take heart that your car is safe. Prices for the range are pretty good and the green fee's in particular are very reasonable. The pro-shop prices are to be expected, with a range of budget and premium equipment, and there can sometime be some good end-of-line deal available. Coaching and lesson costs vary, and all of these details can be found on the Cranfield Golf Website. (See bottom of review) If you are a regular to golf and have a Range Card, discounts are available.
Basket of 50 Balls for the Range = £3.50
Basket of 90 Balls for the Range = £5.50
Basket of 130 Balls for the Range = £6.50
With a Range Card
Basket of 50 Balls for the Range= £3.40 (Early Bird Price = £2.00)
Basket of 90 Balls for the Range = £4.90 (Early Bird Price = £3.00)
Basket of 130 Balls for the Range = £5.50 (Early Bird Price = £3.50)
(Early Bird Times = 8am to 12pm Weekdays)
Range Card "Top-ups"
£20 will give £20
£50 will be topped up to £55
£100 top-up will give you £115
Green Fee's 9 Holes Per Person - Adult £6.70: Junior/Senior £5.20.
Green Fee's 18 Holes Per Person - Adult £9.30: Junior/Senior £7.30.
Range Card holders receive a £1 discount on the green fee's
Club/Bag Hire - £2.00
Trolley Hire - £1.00
--Range and Clubhouse--
The full length driving range at the centre is excellent, with 40 bays on two levels and a further 9 bays for approach practice and a practice bunker, everything to catered for. 18 of the lower level bays have 'Power Tee's', which automatically set your ball on the tee. These have recently been installed, and so have clean and new mats. The other bays have traditional manual rubber set tee's and are clean and tidy as well, with plenty of space to move around and store clubs. The walkway behind the bays is also quite wide, and has seating for onlookers, with two ball dispensing machines on the lower level and one of the upper level, which is accessible by a small staircase only. The approach practice bays are frequently used for coaching and are the only bays which are uncovered. The practice bunker is kept clean and tidy, but can get waterlogged quickly with high rainfall. The whole range area is well maintained, and with the addition of the floodlights, swing practice in the dark can be a joy, with the whole range lit up nicely. The overall upkeep of the range itself could be a little better however. The bunkers look a little ropey and ball collection doesn't seem to be frequent enough, because a lot of balls are on the range at any one time, and sometimes left on the course surrounding the range. Taking these shortcoming into consideration though, the quality is high indeed. So much so that the English Gold Union has awarded the centre with a Rangemark accreditation. One negative would be the putting practice area (situated next to the car park), is in dire need of refurbishment, with the holes and surface in a very poor condition.
Operated by Direct Golf UK, the pro-shop of the centre is well stocked, with all the major golfing brand names like Callaway, Nike, Ping, Titelist, Letters and so on. Every type of golfing equipment can be found, including clubs, bags, clothes etc etc... An impressive selection, and not just for the higher-end equipment either. Budget brands are available too, so the shop has a nice balance for the customer. There is a limited selection of drinks and snacks stocked, as well as toilet facilities and an outdoor seating area. The shop area, which also has the main reception counter in, is not overly large inside, and can get congested at busy times. I would recommend if you have a trolley with your clubs, not to take it inside the shop or through to the range, as you may become a hindrance, carry your clubs through instead.
With an excellent range and a high quality pro shop, you may be thinking now of me describing a brilliant nine holes of sculpted landscaping. Unfortunately, this is not the case. Although the course is nicely set out, wrapping around the range and car park, the overall quality of each of the holes is left wanting. Each of the holes are given names on the scorecard, and that seems to be their only individuality. Although not exactly the same, they are very similar to one another, with few natural course obstacles and aside from the fifth hole, every pin is sighted from the tee, with little course undulation and few turns. This all makes for the round to be a little easy, even though some pin placements can make it a bit more challenging.
Onto the quality of the surfaces, the fairways are cut nicely, and the rough varies in lengths, which is good. They are susceptible to a little water-logging though. The greens, even though they are cut close with pronounced fringes, again can water-log easily. One of the most annoying, and unprofessional, aspects about the greens are the pin locations. Many times after the pin has been moved, the previous hole has been left unplugged and exposed, leaving the green with two holes! This can and does cause problems if you would mistakenly hole-out into one or find yourself in the line of the real pin. This, for me is unacceptable on any course, and I am glad it doesn't happen all of the time, but it really should be addressed. The greens also should be cleared more frequently of leaves and debris.
This isn't the worse thing about the course however, the tee's are in much need of replacing or renewing, as some are in a very poor condition indeed. Each hole has a single, slightly elevated mat tee position similar to the range bays, but the mats are in a poor state, some badly worn and very slippery. There is also a rubber tee holder in each mat, and I often find broken tee's and other debris blocking the holes, making it hard to position your own tee. Like the greens, I feel this is just down to a little bit of neglect on the groundsmen's part, and should be put right as soon as possible. There are also litter bins beside each tee which are sometimes left un-emptied, and range balls can be left discarded too.
At weekends, you may find that the ninth hole is being used for coaching lessons, and becomes unplayable. Some may take exception to this, but you can just play the first hole over again to finish off. Some positives are that the course is pleasant to walk around, the surrounding woodland is kept quite neat and tidy, doesn't have long wait times for each group playing and hole five can be a very entertaining hole.
Although I have raised many negatives about this golf centre, I regularly visit because I feel the overall quality is of a high standard. The course, which can vary with is condition greatly, is definitely in need of an overhaul. Replacing the tee's with new mats and making sure the greens are kept correctly for play would be a major improvement.
All this is a shame, because the centre is a nice place to visit on the whole, with quality facilities and services on hand, all in a nice location close to London. Don't let my concerns and observations detract you from visiting the centre however, you may have a day where the course is perfect, but it is worth visiting solely for the range along, which is one of the best I have been to in the country. With good prices and excellent staff, its a great place to go for a bit of practice, and hitting a long drive under the floodlights makes you feel great.
Thanks for Reading. © Novabug.
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Useful websites for Stanmore & Edgware Golf Centre-