Updated: Sep 11, 2020
The Belfry during the COVID crisis was a strange experience. To their huge credit, the management and staff organised social distancing brilliantly but there was no hum about the place and teeing off at the 'spiritual home of the Ryder Cup' was very muted. Usually, the welcome is jolly and players are told a potted history of the course as well as told where the will probably come a cropper. The super-slick practice greens which are usually packed with excited golfers were closed as was the normally bubbly clubhouse. The consequence was that we were only charged £80 for a round which felt about right, given that bunkers couldn't be raked and the course wasn't quite as pristine as we remembered it.
I think the Brabazon gets a bad press - maybe because it is too tricky for some reviewers. This time, we felt as if we were managing to pick our way around with greater stealth than a couple of years ago but our scores scarcely reflected progress. Card-wreckers were the 18th where Mrs W and I both succumbed to the water in front of the tee and ahead of the green and the 12th - a par three over water where club selection bamboozled us both. Nevertheless, Mrs W was able to bathe in her birdie three on the famous 10th (no she certainly didn't drive the hole) among several successes. We didn't conquer the Brabazon but it yielded enough for us to think we could. Inevitably, that means we must return - hopefully when it is back to its brasher self.