English Golf Courses

The closest you’ll get to playing at Augusta

Golfers around the world are well aware that the opportunity to play Augusta National in Georgia are extremely few and far between.

Play the English golf course that helped inspire the design philosophy at the home of the Masters

Golfers around the world are well aware that the opportunity to play Augusta National in Georgia are extremely few and far between.

The only people who can tee it up at Augusta are members – of which there are few – invited guests of members, players who qualify for the Masters and, lastly, members of the press who are lucky enough to come out of the annual ballot during Masters week.

Now, golfers across the world are being given the next best thing.

Cavendish Golf Club, in Buxton, was designed by DrAlisterMacKenzie, the famed golf course designer who worked alongside Bobby Jones and Clifford Roberts in the design of Augusta National, which opened for play in January 1933. MacKenzie’s Buxton design opened some eight years earlier, and he used many of the ideas, designs concepts and topography employed at Cavendish in Georgia.

According to records, MacKenzie noted the similarity in elevation changes between the two sites. Cavendish plays over undulating moorland terrain, with deep ravines, valleys, deep hollows, raised plateaux, incised rivers and sides slopes. MacKenzie used the equally dramatic topography at Augusta to his great advantage the result being a golf course many believe to be the best in the world. No.2 on that ‘best’ list may well be Cypress Point, which is also a MacKenzie creation.

All this, of course, merely adds to the mystique of MacKenzie – and golfers can now experience this mythical designer’s other layouts thanks to the Cavendish MacKenzie Trail.

The trail encompasses nine MacKenzie golf courses within a 60-mile radius of Buxton. Play the lot and you will receive a special certificate.

So much of what golfers love about Augusta can be discovered at Cavendish, almost untouched for 90 years – and still a challenge,” says Jonathan Gaunt, noted golf architect and a committee member of the AlisterMacKenzie Society of Great Britain and Ireland. “As the younger, glossier, more camera-ready sibling of MacKenzie’s 1925 course at Cavendish, Augusta’s design ancestry is still clearly visible, affirming that despite all the changes, MacKenzie and his collaborators design intentions were good a strong.”

For more on the MacKenzie Trail, go to cavendishgolfclub.com

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