The great game has been played at Goodwood for more than 100 years, but the Earl’s modern outlook is demonstrated clearly at the golf club, where the stifling rules of the traditional set up are sidestepped in favour of a relaxed, inclusive ethos. There’s no dress code, a £220 annual joining fee and a decidedly new-wave credit system, which charges according to whether the desired playing time is ‘peak’, ‘popular’ or ‘peaceful’. Day membership is £100.
Goodwood is offering a new range of golf activities for groups on its two championship courses. All skill levels are catered for, with the venue’s team of pros offering beginner lessons through to master classes and even a ‘beat the pro’ competition.
The greens, tees and fairways were revamped about four years ago, with new feature holes added, but the club is still in touch with its past – check out the retro golf buggies with wicker baskets for Champagne. Vintage golf days – plus fours and flat caps – are particularly popular. Of the two options at Goodwood, The Downs is the more challenging (a beautiful downland course and the setting for the English PGA Championship this year) The Park is a more forgiving pay-and-play option. Look out for the views over Chichester Cathedral and to the Isle of Wight from the Downs’ 7th green. Packages such as the ‘Shotgun Start’ (72 playing, 18 four-balls) are great for larger groups, with dinner afterwards in the Ballroom.