Noted as one of the lowest lying areas in England (Holme Fen lies 9 feet below sea level), Cambridgeshire is divided into six administrative districts, with the university town of Cambridge as its administrative centre.
The Cambridgeshire Area Golf Union is the governing body for the approximately 10,000 male golfers in the county who are members of 29 affiliated clubs. The Union is one of ten that form the Midland Golf Union – a body established in 1897 – and CAGU was the last to join in 1950.
The region doesn’t exactly bristle with world-class golf courses but the 36-hole complex at Gog Magog, the delightful parkland course at Saffron Walden and the unique Links Newmarket, stand head and shoulders above the crowd. Gog Magog's Old and Wandlebury courses are both challenging and the Old is a genuine centurion that has hosted the Lagonda Trophy since 1975 with Lee Westwood and Luke Donald among the previous winners.
Laid out within the surrounds of Audley End House, the course at Saffron Walden Golf Club was expanded to a full 18-hole layout in 1975 and its fairways are routed close to the 193-foot spire of St Mary’s Parish Church.
Golfers first played on the Hawtree-designed Wandlebury 18-hole layout at Gog Magog Golf Club in 1999. Eight years later, the R&A used the golf course for Open Championship Regional Qualifying.
Links - Newmarket
Built on a former Newmarket steeplechase course and polo grounds, the original 18 holes at Links Golf Club were set out in 1903. Colonel SV Hotchkin redesigned the layout in the 1930s and this stylish course is still the one that golfers play today.
With fairways laid out on the site of a former prisoner of war camp at Barton Field, the course at Ely City Golf Club was extended to 18 holes in 1973 and a challenge match between the then Open Champion Lee Trevino and Hugh Baiocchi marked the opening of the enlarged course.
Woods and lakes abound at Brampton Park Golf Club, where fairways wind around an undulating parkland landscape. The par three signature hole at the 4th – played to an island green – epitomises the golfing test here, as water comes into play at many of the holes.
First opened for play in 1993, the fairways at Elton Furze Golf Club are set out in two distinct 9-hole circuits, each returning to the clubhouse.
Nene Park (Thorpe Wood)
Peter Alliss and Dave Thomas designed the Thorpe Wood golf course at Nene Park Golf Club. It’s one of the region’s best pay-and-play facilities and it’s also a serious test from the 7,086-yard tips.
St Ives (Hunts) Golf Club began with a 9-holer in 1923, but in the new millennium the club acquired Giffords Farm, an expansive 230-acre site, and commissioned Cameron Sinclair to lay out a new 18-hole course, which Robert Karlsson opened in 2010.
Set within a 250-acre property that features two 18-hole courses and a 9-hole par three course, the Abbotsley course at the Abbotsley Golf Hotel was designed in 1975 then subsequently modified by Vivien Saunders, former British Women’s Open Champion.