Global Edition

Flexible golf at Goodwood proves to be a winner

7.54am 21st August 2009 - Management Topics

Goodwood, the established 36 hole resort near Chichester, has been at the forefront of international sport for generations and since launching the “credit membership” in 2006 has attracted more than 3,500 members. There is no traditional joining fee just simply a nominal annual charge plus club credits for rounds of golf played with the option of purchasing more so that a member pays only for the amount of golf played and can top up accordingly. In fact, membership starts at Goodwood from £370 including credits.

The concept of “credit membership” was the brainchild of Lord March the present owner of the 12,000 acre estate to make Golf At Goodwood available to many more enthusiasts and also give players value for their money. Since the launch, this imaginative system has proved highly popular and that has been further heightened by the recent economic down turn.

This innovative approach to membership has also been rolled out at Goodwood’s four other members clubs – the Goodwood Horseracing Club, Goodwood Road Racing Club, Goodwood Aero Club and The Kennels clubhouse. Members are offered similar five star facilities and service and with a combined membership of 10,000, Goodwood is proving that this is viable and well-liked alternative to traditional golf club membership.

At Goodwood, members have the choice of two exceptional courses, the Downs Course, laid out in 1914 by James Braid or the more contemporary Park Course that was designed by Donald Steel, the eminent international architect and player. More recently, £2 million has been invested in the transformation of the Downs Course including the creation of six new holes and the layout has been lengthened to 7,104 yards from the championship tee.

The Park Course is more benign but equally challenging as it follows a route through woodlands close to the refurbished 94-bedroomed hotel so that, together, the two courses provide the perfect blend and balance for Goodwood members.

The fascinating aspect of the now-luxurious establishment is that the followers of all the various Goodwood pursuits- golf, horseracing, motor racing, flying and cricket – meet up there to share their experiences and enjoy the cuisine and opulence of one of the best known sporting estates in the world.

Goodwood is a privately owned 12,000 acre estate set in the heart of West Sussex. It has been the home to the Duke of Richmond and family for over 300 years. There are two outstanding 18 hole courses at Goodwood – the historic James Braid designed Downs Course which is available to members, their guests and corporate guests and the Park Course designed by Donald Steel which operates as a “visitor golf” venue open to all golfers paying a green fee.

The clubhouse known as “The Kennels” is a stunning 18th century Grade I* listed building with lavish locker rooms with a full attendant service, a drawing room, bar and dining room offering fine dining. Woody buggies and Ralph Lauren’s first ever flagship golf store in Europe complete the comprehensive golf facilities at Goodwood.

The Goodwood Hotel located within the estate has 94 guestrooms and features the 18th century former inn called the Richmond Arms offering rustic country cuisine in the vaulted restaurant. Elsewhere, Goodwood also has its own Health Club and contemporary Bar & Grill. Goodwood is located 10 minutes from Chichester and just one hour from London.

Golf at Goodwood

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