How Can I Play Wentworth?

The home of the BMW PGA Championship is one of the most exclusive clubs in the UK, but can you play it?

A general view of the 11th green of the West Course at Wentworth
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Close to Windsor Castle at Virginia Water is Wentworth – not only one of the best golf courses in Surrey but one of the most exclusive clubs in the UK.

The club was established in 1922, with the first of its four courses, the Harry Colt-designed East Course, opening two years later. Two years after that, what would become the most renowned course opened, the West Course, which was again designed by Colt. It would be another 64 years until the third 18-hole course opened, the Edinburgh Course, designed by John Jacobs with Bernard Gallagher and Gary Player. Finally, the club is also home to a nine-hole par 3 Executive Course.

While all three 18-hole courses are high class, it is the West Course (otherwise known as Burma Road) that has garnered worldwide acclaim. With its lush parkland setting, the course is replete with heather, rhododendrons and a huge variety of trees including pine, birch and oak lining its fairways.

A general view of the 2nd green of the West Course at Wentworth

(Image credit: Getty Images)

The course has changed significantly in recent years thanks to Ernie Els, first in 2010, when he lengthened it, recontoured putting surfaces and added bunkers while deepening others. That renovation work was poorly received by some, but Els was again at the helm in 2016 for another extensive redesign, this time involving five of the greens and the removal of some bunkers to offer a challenge worthy of the prestigious BMW PGA Championship the course has hosted annually since 1984.

While the DP World Tour’s flagship event is distinguished enough, the West Course has also hosted other high-profile tournaments including the 1953 Ryder Cup and the HSBC World Match Play Championship between 1964 and 2007.  

A general view of the 10th hole of the West Course at Wentworth

(Image credit: Getty Images)

With its world-class reputation and storied history, it’s perhaps unsurprising that experiencing a round at the club is no straightforward feat – but that’s only been true in recent years. Until 2014, the club had been open to the public. However, a buyout by Beijing investment company Reignwood Group saw a debenture membership structure implemented.

As a result, the debenture is now estimated to exclude all except those with pockets deep enough to find £175,000. Meanwhile, annual fees reportedly stood at £16,000 as long ago as 2015. 

Another option is to play as a guest of a member. Meanwhile, Wentworth is also the headquarters of the DP World Tour and Official World Golf Ranking, so if you’re an employee of those organisations, that’s another potential route to playing there, as is being an employee at the club, or being fortunate enough to play as part of one of the regular corporate days held there.

Those who do get to experience Wentworth will also be able to enjoy not just its world-class courses, but also its tennis club, spa, swimming pool and its famous castle clubhouse.

Can Anyone Play Golf At Wentworth?

Wentworth has become a private club following its sale to a Chinese investment company in 2014. The best ways to play the course are to become a member or play as a member’s guest. There are also options for employees of the DP World Tour and Official World Golf Ranking, who are both headquartered at the club. Corporate days at the club offer another potential avenue to playing there.

How Much Is Wentworth Golf Membership?

Wentworth is estimated to charge a £175,000 debenture to join the club. Additionally, annual fees are also charged, which reportedly stood at £16,000 in 2015.

Who Lives On Wentworth Golf Course?

Wentworth is located in an exclusive mansion-lined estate. Several famous golfers have taken up residence on the estate through the years, including Sir Nick Faldo, Thomas Bjorn and Ernie Els, who has also redesigned the course.

Mike Hall
Freelance Staff Writer

Mike has 25 years of experience in journalism, including writing on sports such as golf, football and cricket. Now a freelance writer for Golf Monthly, he is dedicated to covering the sport’s most newsworthy stories. Originally from East Yorkshire, Mike now resides in Canada, where the nearest course is less than a mile from his home. It’s there where he remains confident that, one of these days, he’ll play the 17th without finding the water. Kevin Cook’s acclaimed 2007 biography, Tommy’s Honour, about golf’s founding father and son, remains one of his all-time favourite sports books.