What they say…
The course at Stoneham is laid out over a beautiful undulating landscape which is a combination of heathland and parkland. Of the long par- 4s the 4th is exhilarating, driving out over heather before plunging steeply downhill. A stream crossing 100 yards short of the green should not be of concern to most golfers. The 11th involves a sizeable carry over a cross-bunker from the tee followed by an uncompromising approach over a deep gully to a green perched on a ledge on the far side.
What we say…
Stoneham Golf club is ranked as one of the best courses in Hampshire and the South of England so it has allot to live up too, it doesn’t disappoint.
The course is one for the members though, if you’re a visitor for the day and its your first round it will certainly be a challenge. Its clear from the Par 5 1st hole that you have to know where to play the ball, you lose sight of the latter 300 yards of the fairway as it drops away over the crest 200 from the tee box. Everyone one of the 18 holes at Stoneham is a challenge for the mid – high handicap golfer as the ball is very unlikely to sit level with your feet on this beautifully presented and undulating course.
Although a challenge, its an enjoyable day’s golf, when you do manage to conquer one of the holes you really feel like you have earned it, the course doesn’t give up much with its very quick greens so you need to muster all of your concentration just to sink the normally easy 3 foot putt.
Stoneham has undergone a number of changes over the last 18 months, a large and still ongoing project was undertaken to remove a number of trees from around the course, this has made a number of the holes a little less challenging (but by no means easy) to find your way out if you do get in to the thick stuff.
The management has also changed, this has seen Stoneham open up its doors (a little more) to the public, Stoneham is known to be a prestigious club with a limited membership but you can now play through a number of tee time providers and on society days. Having been a private club for many years the members do seem to keep to themselves and if your not wearing the mandatory club sweater or “black trousers and white shirt” be prepared to get the odd “you’re not from round here” look as you make your way through the course.
The round is a little pricey (£55 on weekend) if you are not with a member or on an offer but if you are looking to treat yourself to a days “premium” golf in Hampshire then you certainly need to put this one on your list.