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Club History

Ladbrook Park Golf Club was established in 1908 by a group of enthusiastic members of Robin Hood Golf Club who, due to the expansion of the city of Birmingham, had received notice to quit their course in the vicinity of Fox Hollies Road adjacent to Hall Green Racecourse.

A unique opportunity arose to lease land from Oscar Bowen who lived at Ladbrook Hall in order to create a new golf club and by 1911 there were 250 members.

Arguably the finest golf course designer of the 20th century, Harry Colt planned the course in 1913 and many of the features he introduced can still be seen today. Colt was probably the first golf architect who was not a professional golfer, the first to use the drawing board extensively, the first tree-planter and the first truly international designer. He left a mark on the British landscape and was possibly the finest golf architect Britain produced.

From 1939-1945, much of the course was given over to agricultural use in common with many courses, but in 1951, the club secured its future when it purchased the land from the Bowen family.

A very famous figure from the 50s and 60s had his workshop right next door to the clubhouse. Dick Penfold was the man behind the 'Penfold Ace' golf ball and developed one of the very first driving machines to test golf balls. In its time, it has tested its abilities against the likes of Gary Player when he visited Ladbrook in 1975.

The result is unknown, but Player went on to win the Open Championship using Penfold balls and this was followed by Severiano Ballesteros winning the Open Championship in 1979 using a Penfold Tradition ball.

For many years the 'Penfold Robot' stood behind the 17th green until in 2005 Jeff Hemming, then Club Captain negotiated its restoration and it now stands proudly beside the first tee.

Ladbrook is fortunate to have as a member Elizabeth Earnshaw OBE, who has a most distinguished career in golf.

She attended the Royal and Ancient Golf Club Referees School in 1991, passed the examination and was the first woman to sit on the Royal and Ancient Golf Club's Rules of Golf committee. In 1995 she was invited to act as a referee in the Open Championship at St Andrews, which led to an invitation to referee at the Masters at Augusta National. Elizabeth was elected president of ELGA in 2007. In spite of her many outstanding achievements and responsibilities, Elizabeth remains an active club member and is always ready to advise when questions on the rules arise.

At Ladbrook Park you will find a club with a proud sense of its history and with one eye firmly on its future. Improvements to the course and facilities continue to be as important to the current members as they were to the club's founders over 100 years ago.