Course of the Month - Southern Cross, Canberra, Australia.
Caberra is one of the world's most unique cities. 100 years ago there was no
Canberra, just farmland. Then the newly formed Australian Parliament decided to build a capital city. First, there was the international competition for the design of the new city, won by an American, Walter Burley Griffin. And from that design has grown one of the most remarkable cities in the world. It is a city which combines nature and suburbia, a city where kangaroos can still be seen next to suburban streets and a city with a spectacular open design.
23rd August 1972 gave life to a new sports and social club, 10 kilometres south west of Canberra centre, which undoubtedly is now an unique institution in the local community. The founding directors took great care to position the Southern Cross Club as a family club that had a focus on providing families with a broad range of activities and programs. Henry's Family Restaurant is but one example of the Board's early vision for the Club. Southern Cross club features the Tuggeranong and Woden Indoor Sports Stadiums, a Sailing School, a Health and Fitness Centre, cruises and a Yacht Club. The jewel in the club's crown is the the Southern Cross Pitch and Putt course.
Southern Cross Pitch and Putt course on Irving Street in Phillip undoubtedly set a new quality benchmark for such facilities when it opened in 1999. It has sustained a high popularity for nigh ron 10 years, unrivalled in Australia. At $12 for 18 holes and taking just 90 minutes per round, it continues to be one of the most loved landscaped and sporting spaces in Canberra by those that regularly enjoy it. Southern Cross boasts lots of trees and water features It's excellent design has made it a sought after host venue for domestic and international Pitch and Putt tournaments.
Royal Canberra Golf Club lies just 5 kilometres away but Southern Cross' putting surfaces stand comparison with the best on the continent.
Not too far from Queanbeyan (where the historic Australia v. Ireland international was played in 1996), Southern Cross welcomed players from all over world to the 2007 Australian Open, the final leg of the Australian Triple Crown. "Southern Cross is a beautifully laid out course. It was the prime setting for the Australian Open," says Ireland's Alan Hanlon, one of the top international players in the sport. Alan Hanlon finished secod in that Australian Open, eight shots behind the hot 32 under par pace of his fellow countryman Ian Farrelly. Another Irish player, Liz Quinn was crowned Australian ladies champion after the 72 hole event.
Marie Hutchison is a keen player and Treasurer of the Australian Pitch and Putt Association. Marie's view is unequivocal. "The best course is the other ACT course – Southern Cross." Marie finished fourth in this year's ACT championship at Southern Cross, behind winner June Drury. Stewart Genge was the men's champion.
One feels Southern Cross will see much competitive Pitch and Putt action in the decades to some.