London Scottish Golf Club near the windmill on Wimbledon Common is the third oldest golf club in England.
It was founded in 1865 by members of the London Scottish Volunteer Rifles (now the London Scottish regiment), who were stationed on the common. Some of the holes were laid out roughly along the lines of rifle ranges. There is evidence to suggest that golf was played on the course for at least two years before the club’s formal foundation, which would make London Scottish the longest continually played upon golf in England.
Originally consisting of seven holes, it was redesigned as an 18-hole course by the club professional Tom Dunn in 1871, thereby becoming only the fourth golf course in the world – and the first in England – to have 18 holes.
Unusually, due to local byelaws, all golfers playing on the London Scottish course must wear a pillar box red upper garment. Because of its age and its positioning on a Site of Special Scientific Interest, the course is one of the few in the world to have no sand bunkers. Its wood-panelled clubhouse, which was built in 1897 and is a listed building, is a rare remaining example of a purpose-built Victorian golf pavilion.
The holes we love at London Scottish Golf Club:
Hole 7 : Paradise
Par 4, 390 yards, Stroke index 2
As the name suggests, this is a delight to play. It requires a reasonably long drive, ideally to the left hand side of the fairway, followed by a testing medium to long iron approach through a tunnel of scots pines.
Hole 11 : Long Hole
Par 5, 479 yards, Stroke index 3
The only par five on the course. Club selection from the tee is all important to avoid the cross ditches and cinder road. Most people lay up, but the big hitters may take on the ditches and road. The green, less receptive than any other, is set against the splendid backdrop of North View.