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Stoke poges, a quaint leafy town on the outskirts of the chiltern hundreds, is home to the stoke park club. The wooded chiltern hills (which split buckinghamshire and berkshire) were once a legendary hiding place where thieves would wait in ambush, and a hundred is a common term for the division of an english county. Things are more genteel these days.
âĢľstoke park is a lovely place, and there is very fine golf to be played there; the club is an fascinating one, however, as being one of the first and most successful attempts in england at what is considered a country club in america,âĢĿ wrote bernard darwin in his 1910 book the golf courses of the british isles.
The historic parkland was first landscaped by capability brown in the late 1800s. Then came harry colt, who planned a 27-hole golf course that opened for play in 1908. The 7th, colt's signature hole and the basis for augusta national's 16th, is regarded as one of his best. The 7th, which was just remodeled, now has a pool and a waterfall. The club had forty-five harry colt-designed holes by 1922, but by the end of wwii, only eighteen remained.
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