Brocket Hall (Palmerston), England
 
Hertfordshire - Best In County Golf Courses  Hertfordshire - Best In County Golf Courses
Brocket Hall Golf Club
Welwyn Garden City
Herts
AL8 7XG
England
ArchitectDonald Steel
Head Professional/Director of GolfKeith Wood
Telephone+44 (0)1707 335241
LocationA1 J4, 22 miles N of London
Websites Golf Club Website
VisitorsContact in advance
Club Secretary/ ManagerDavid Griffin

Visit Golfbreaks.com for a golf holiday at Brocket Hall (Palmerston)

 

Located a mere 20 miles to the north of the capital and close to leafy Welwyn Garden City in Hertfordshire, lies Brocket Hall Golf Club. With two courses named after Prime Ministers who used to reside at Brocket Hall, the Palmerston is the new kid on the block, opening for play in 2000. 

Designed by Donald Steel and measuring a whopping 7,080 yards from the championship tees, the Palmerston is a real test. The course winds its way through the undulating estate where majestic specimen trees, including hornbeam, beech and pines create a feeling of intimacy and pose as impressive hazards. Steel’s design philosophy was to provide a top quality course with the least possible intrusion on the site. We think he has exceeded his objective with the Palmerston course and it’s probably just as well, because this is top quality land. 

Unlike the older Melbourne course, the River Lea doesn’t come into play on the Palmerston course. Instead, there’s bold bunkering to contend with and, of course, avenues of trees. Steel has created a thinking man and women’s course where the golfer is presented with options. Central bunkers divide the 3rd fairway and the 4th tempts the big hitters to drive left, over a small hollow and across the corner of the dogleg. The short par five 9th is also tempting to attack in two shots, but cleverly positioned greenside bunkers await anything but the best struck approach shot.  

Your approach shot on the par four 12th must negotiate an unusual chalk face which lies some 100 yards from the green. This really is a delightful hole, which requires pinpoint accuracy from the tee.  

Without doubt, Brocket Hall Golf Club is a classy and stylish place to play golf and the Palmerston course is a delightful contrast to the Melbourne. In many ways the Palmerston is reminiscent and just as good as Woburn’s Marquess course. Add in the famous Auberge du Lac restaurant and you’ve got a tasty venue.

Brocket Hall Golf Club (Palmerston course) was originally nominated as a Gem by Len and David and was added to the site on 22nd March 2005. The Palmerston course has since become a ranked course in our English Top 100. The original nomination comments from Len and David follow: 

Len: “With its two championship courses and superb practice facilities Brocket Hall is a great set-up. I have played in excess of 300 courses including over 60 of those featured in the Top 100 and consider the Palmerston course at Brocket Hall to easily rank among the best inland courses in the British Isles.”  

David: “Superb tree lined setting, long testing course with good risk and reward holes, stunning.”
 
 
If the above course review article is not accurate, let us know by clicking here
 

Average Reviewers Score:      
[Next 10]  
Had the pleasure of playing The Palmerstone course with 7 friends on 4th Feb on what proved to be one of the very few non-downpour days so far in 2014. So wet has it been that most other courses in the area were closed, so we weren't sure what to expect. What we weren't expecting for sure though was a course that, other than the odd bunker, showed no sign of the appalling recent weather. Fairways were firm and the greens were as true and as quick as you'd expect in the height of summer. It really was quite remarkable; member's fees are certainly re-invested back into the club, that's for sure. The course itself is a challenging layout, especially from the back tees. The opening couple of holes lack a little drama but force you to hit long and straight to make par. From there though you enter a succession of holes carved through the forest that are simply stunning and remind one of Woburn, the dogleg par 4 4th hole and sweeping dogleg par 5 6th particularly special. The nine ends with a reachable par 5 but with the green protected by spectacular bunkering you've got to be a special player to even think about going for it. The back nine starts with a lengthy par 5 before re-entering the forest at the stroke 1 par 4 11th that demands a 250 yard carry just to make the fairway and afford a sight of the pin. The 12th, with the fairway and green separated by a small chalk quarry, is a simply stunning visual hole with the drive genuinely exciting, while the monster par 5 13th that runs along the old wall of the estate is as good a hole as you'll find anywhere, with the green framed by the tall trees. A long downhill par 3 followed by two tree lined par 4's are equally special before a short uphill par 3 sets you up for the finale, a double dogleg par 5 for which the final approach shot to a well guarded green affords views of the beautiful Brocket Hall, it's outbuildings and the broadwater that are such features of Melbourne Course. Post round the food in, and views from, the clubhouse were cracking and the newly refurbished locker rooms all just added to a great experience. That's before we talk about the practice facilities which surely have to be amongst the best (if not the best) on offer anywhere in the country. This really was winter golf at it's very very best, up there with The Grove in terms of conditioning but all over it in terms of a course with natural beauty. Play it if you can.
14 March 2014 See other reviews from this reviewer
Was this review helpful? Yes / No
0 people found this review helpful
Respond to above review
I played this for the 2nd time last week as I found that it was one of the those courses that requires a 2nd look before reviewing. The course was presented in good condition with true greens. Its not a difficult test of golf even from the back stones. I think this is more to do with keeping it easier for corporate golf and general speed of play. Fairways are generous and on many holes you could land plane ! That said, there are some good holes, especially the first 6 with some holes through tall pines, well sculpted and picturesque. The back 9 is not as picturesque but there are holes which can give you some trouble if you dont choose the right club off the tee and stay on the right side of the hole. Overall, For the price bracket it is in (4-ball special price worked out 80 quid per person) I think the value is ok and well conditioned. Plus, you have access to possibly the finest practice facilities in Herts.
15 October 2013 See other reviews from this reviewer
Was this review helpful? Yes / No
0 people found this review helpful
Respond to above review
Played the Palmerston in late April, and when many golf courses are struggling for the condition of their course with the long winter, the Palmerston was in very good condition. There were some parts that had been effected by the vast amounts of water we have seen, but they were few and far between. The greens were in good condition, and ran very smoothly. I was impressed by the variety of the par 5's and the wind made gauging distances with the natural undulation tricky. I would go back and play it again, trying to remember all the places i went wrong previously.
21 May 2013 See other reviews from this reviewer
Was this review helpful? Yes / No
0 people found this review helpful
Respond to above review
Played both the Palmerston and Melbourne on 23/09/11 for my brothers birthday. Whilst both courses were in immaculate condition, the Palmerston is the clear star for me. The first is a little nondescript, but the rest of the course is a joy, tree lined, secluded (road noise on a couple of holes aside), plenty of elevation changes and the greens were superb. To compare to other UK courses I have played, for me the Palmerston is far superior to the Belfry and the Forest of Arden, slightly better than the Duke's and the equal of the Duchess at Woburn. A word of caution, if you're a mid or high handicapper like me, then this is probably too much course for you, but you will have a fantastic day regardlless. I must also mention the service, which is superb (as you would expect for the money!). The starters on both courses were great, and special mention to James in the pro shop. The practice facilities are the best I have used.
24 September 2011 See other reviews from this reviewer
Was this review helpful? Yes / No
0 people found this review helpful
Respond to above review
Played here in a society at the end of November, it was a very chilly day - just before the snow hit the UK. We had good breakfast, the starter was very helpful and friendly, in fact the service all round was excellent - as was lunch later that day. The course has a enjoyable variety of holes, especially if you like tree lined fairways. It's hard to believe this course is only 10 years old, as it sits so well in the landscape, it's an outstanding example of sympathetic course design. As others have mentioned the 12th is a very interesting hole with a small 'quarry' in the middle of the fairway to make you choose your club with care The only negative I would mention is bit of road noise from A1 on holes 4 & 13 on the east side Not quite as good a course as Bearwood Lakes or the excellent Druids Glen, but a glorious parkland course none the less, and good experience, I would definitely play it again.
29 December 2010 See other reviews from this reviewer
Was this review helpful? Yes / No
0 people found this review helpful
Respond to above review
played in late June 2010 after two weeks of sunshine and zero rain - this course was holding up much better than its sister. If you can play just one course here please please avoid all the gimicky water holes and go and play this one. Forget the first two holes, after that each has a little something different and challenging (disclaimer treelined fairways are my personal golfing fetish) There are a lot of of comparisons with the Marquess at Woburn - well i played that last week and from a PLAYING perspective I can understand and fully back this up (this course is prob 90% for me personally) but - AESTHETICALLY - seriously ?? not for me, fairways were patchy with mutiple blobs of grasses and lumps, bumps and looking a shade sorry for themselves. purely to look at, no way its near the quality of some of the rivals mentioned in other reviews - but whatever floats your boat !! great course and a pleasure to play - greens are very naughty , superb quality.
28 June 2010 See other reviews from this reviewer
Was this review helpful? Yes / No
0 people found this review helpful
Respond to above review
Played here after heavy rainfall but the course drained fantastically well, particularly the greens, you wouldn't have thought it had rained at all. The course itself didn't quite live up to my expections after reading most of the previous reviews on here. There are of course some stand out holes such as 4th,6th,12th and 13th, but also many fairly standard holes. The greens were extremely true and fast for the time of year, but were diseased and looked visually poor. I think the Melbourne course here is superior in terms of excitement and quality of holes. All that said it is still a very good course all in all.
14 April 2010 See other reviews from this reviewer
Was this review helpful? Yes / No
0 people found this review helpful
Respond to above review
I played the Palmerston this weekend. i have waited to play the course for some time and when the oppertunity arose to play i jumped at it. i must admit i was very dissapointed. maybe it was because of the bad weather we have had recently but the course does not appear to be particularly well maintained and the greens were not great. we did not take advantage of all of the facilities so i cannot really make a judgement on them. the staff however were very good. i will try the course again and hope that i am proved wrong but once again i can only say that the course is at best a good course not what i would consider a great course as your albatross rating would suggest.
14 March 2010 See other reviews from this reviewer
Was this review helpful? Yes / No
0 people found this review helpful
Respond to above review

Response:
Andy17 March 2010
A shame that you did not have a great experience. My feeling that it is more down to the time of the year to be honest. I have played a number of decent UK courses in 2010 and they are all looking sorry for themselves - the longest winter for 30+ years has not been kind. If you get to go back to Brocket Hall in the summer, you'll rate the course differently I think, thanks.
I've been fortunate enough to play this course dozens of times since its 2000 opening. Whilst this still demands long straight driiving, its also requires great concentration on the greens where the lines are often optical illusions caused by the superb design. The old maxim of aiming for the tree because you never hit anything you aim at doesn't work here as the one behind is larger still. There a fine welcome back in the clubhouse where the facilities are second to none.
19 January 2010 See other reviews from this reviewer
Was this review helpful? Yes / No
0 people found this review helpful
Respond to above review
what a delightful course and with some of the best practice facilities in England. The design was naturally flowing with the undulation of the land and there was quite a bit of slope from tee to greens. Its better than Wentworth Edinburgh, Woburn Marquess and Stoke Park Club.
18 July 2008 See other reviews from this reviewer
Was this review helpful? Yes / No
0 people found this review helpful
Respond to above review

Response:
Billy04 September 2008
I agree it's a better course than Stoke Park but can't agree it's better than the Edinburgh and Marquess.
faisal03 October 2008
I haven't played Marquess but I agree its better than Edinburgh. Palmerston has natural undulation throughout the course whereas Edinburgh only has for part of it. Palmerston is prettier as well.
Nigel Bradley14 November 2008
I played Palmerston in November 2007. It was in immaculate condition. I can honestly say it is a splendid course, tough but fair, and ranks in my top 20 ever played.It is an oasis of tranquility too.
[Next 10]  

10 Latest course reviews
1 Cabot Links
''It was interesting to play Cabot Links a couple of times in conjunction with Cabot Cliffs to see th...''
2 Cabot Cliffs
''Cabot Cliffs lived up to my anticipation. So many great strong holes. Even the unconventional one...''
3 Dyrham Park
''Thanks to Kate and her team for another hugely enjoyable golf day with a friendly and professional ...''
4 Craigielaw
''I played this course for the 6th time last week. I come to East Lothian every two years to play all...''
5 Dundarave
''Dundarave is located in a very charming area of eastern Prince Edward Island. Amazingly, it was ro...''
6 Sagebrush
''Wow, I am surprised that a course of this caliber is currently out of commission. I have played it...''
7 Links at Crowbush Cove
''Crowbush Cove is in a truly beautiful location. The conditioning of the course is very good. And ...''
8 Ayodhya Links
''The Ayodhya Links Golf Course is located above a vast marshland has been dug up and turned into an ...''
9 Aberdovey
''This is links golf at it's very best. A true test of how to play golf in a variety of conditions. W...''
10 Crowborough Beacon
''This course is on high land, well above sea level and a worthy member of the English Top 100. Being...''

Click here to see our 100 latest reviews



Home  |  Score card  |  About Us  |  Contact Us  |  News  |  Resorts  |  Gems  |  Golf Breaks  |  Site Map|  Terms & Conditions|  Privacy Policy/Cookies