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History of Kington Golf Club

Renowned golf architect, Major Cecil Hutchinson showed extraordinary vision, imagination and skill when he converted an unpromising Bradnor Hill in to what is now universally acknowledged as one of England’s finest inland-links courses.

There is evidence that golf was played near Kington in the late 19th century when the Banks family of the Hergest Court Estate laid out a five-hole course on Hergest Ridge. At the beginning of the 20th century a group of golf enthusiasts set up a nine hole course at Harpton, near Downton House, the home of our long serving Club President, Sir Andrew Duff Gordon. In 1924 the group decided to create an 18 hole course and invited Hutchison, a friend of the golfing Longueville family from Leamore Manor, to survey Hergest Ridge and the adjacent Bradnor Hill. Hutchison had already established an enviable reputation as one of a group of emerging designers led by the famous Willie Park including legendary course architects Alistair MacKenzie, Harry Colt, James Braid, Herbert Fowler and Donald Ross. He had already worked with Braid at Gleneagles and Carnoustie and later with Stafford Vere Hotchkin to redesign Woodhall Spa, arguably one of the finest inland courses in the World.

Hotchkin and Hutchison were then joined by Sir Guy Campbell to form the renowned Ferigina company that covered all aspects ot the golf course business including design, construction, maintenance, equipment, turf dressing and seed. Among their fine creations were Ashridge, Leeds Castle and the splendid West Sussex courses.

After completing his surveys of both potential locations for the new Kington course, Hutchinson felt that Bradnor Hill offered more possibilities for his enlightened design principle of making a course to conform to the natural features and blend in with the landscape. This design was accepted and construction work began in 1925. The course opened for play (on a limited number of holes) in 1926. His classic design offered five very different par threes; three par fives; and ten par fours and is truly a masterpiece. Apart from a few minor changes, the course remains true to its original 1926 lay-out.

Springy moorland turf, superb free-draining greens and unsurpassed spectacular panoramic views over the seven 'old' counties of Herefordshire, Worcestershire, Breconshire, Radnorshire, Shropshire, Gloucestershire and Monmouthshire make this historic course a 'must-play' for all discerning golfers. Amid a chorus of skylarks and soaring red kites, Kington offers a true golfing heaven.