Winter Golf in Northumberland
Northumberland is the northernmost county in England, bordering Cumbria, Co Durham, Tyne and Wear and the Scottish borders. To the east is the North Sea and a stunning 64-mile coastline. Along this shoreline and a little further inland are some golfing gems that allow for year-round golf – especially in winter, where you can gain that much-needed momentum and practice moving in the high season months. Below are some courses that should definitely be on your list:
A combination of the Lakes and Dawson courses, The Old Course has been skillfully modelled to provide dramatic views and some of the most stunning holes in the country. On the fascinating 17th, for example, you drive downhill past two lakes before aiming for a narrow green flanked on either side by ponds. The Course is playable from 01 November to 31 March each year. At £15 per round, it’s great value to play a mix of both the PGA Europro tour courses. Don’t forget to call into the relaxed and friendly Longhirst bar and lounge after your round.
This shorter but tricky golf course is commonly referred to as one of the most beautiful and beautifully situated tracks in England. The course provides stunning views of the coastline and the historic Bamburgh Castle which have to be viewed no matter how critical the shot. The first two holes are Par 3s, and the last three all provide birdie opportunities to finish off your round strong but can just as quickly get you into trouble if you’re not accurate. Bamburgh Castle is a course that will make any golfer think before they swing.
A previous host of the PGA North Region Championship, Burgham Park provides panoramic views of the Simonside Hills to the west and the coast to the east. Partially designed by former Ryder Cup Captain Mark James, Burgham Park is open all year round to enjoy a challenging but fun experience for all abilities. Be sure to stop off at the Spike bar, located just off the 18th hole, or the 19th Hole Bar for a well-earned refreshment and bite to eat. Burgham Park’s amenities also include a practice area and driving range to get a much needed warmup done before your round.
Ranked No. 1 in Northumberland as well as serving as an Open qualifying venue for 2018, Goswick Links Golf Club is a must for your 2018 golf calendar. It is a true championship links course and is rarely affected by the weather, remaining playable all year with dedicated tees to full greens. Located only an hour from Newcastle and Edinburgh, it boasts the most stunning coastal scenery in Northumberland. A visit to this fantastic links will not be quickly forgotten.
Alnmouth Golf Club is the 4th oldest club in England, and it boasts great golf throughout the entire year. Overlooking both Foxton and Alnmouth Bay, this coastal links course with its parkland treats was voted one of the top 100 Hidden Gem golf courses in the UK by Golf Monthly magazine. Expect a very warm welcome at this wonderful course, and be sure to visit the first-class practice facilities before your round and the beautiful clubhouse after. Be wary of the 6th hole here, with a blind second shot and a small green protected by bunkers; making par here will feel like a birdie.