Take a look at our top eight courses in Northamptonshire.
The Best Golf Courses In Northamptonshire
Right in the heart of England, Northamptonshire borders eight counties and forms a part of the Midlands. There are plenty of courses throughout and many are based around the county town of Northampton. Below we have taken a look at some of the best.
Related: Golf Monthly’s UK&I Top 100 Courses
Wellingborough moved to its new home at Harrowden Hall in 1975, adopting the stately home of Lord Vaux as its clubhouse and laying out an 18-hole course which can stretch to 6,711 yards on adjacent land more than enough for most, even in these 7,000 yard times.
The holes are often reasonably generous, and though there are trees that can stymie your progress, the scope to lose a ball within the courses boundaries is fairly limited. In places, newly planted saplings will tighten things up for future generations, most notably on the 5th. But overall, the freedom to swing is welcome, as length alone is enough of a test, especially on a back nine measuring 3,501 yards, even with two short par-4s. One of these is the 18th, a risk-reward hole demanding a fair degree of accuracy even when playing safe. Position is everything.
Whilst much of Harry Colt’s heathery handiwork is close to London, there are plenty of fine examples in slightly more rural locations such as the lovely village of Church Brampton in Northamptonshire. The club would probably be more widely-known were it not a little off the beaten track, and it celebrated its centenary in 2009 having previously undergone an upgrade under the guidance of Cameron Sinclair.
With only one starting point, a stretch of three new holes was opened in 2004 which offers a route back to the clubhouse for those wishing to play just nine, and the club also has an entertaining 6-hole Par 3 course which is named after the original great architect. On the main course, heather and gorse combine with mature trees and some gentle undulations to provide a varied and greatly enjoyable test which include five holes on the other side of a railway line.
Despite its quiet location, the club is only a few minutes from the M1 and more than worth seeking out.
Designed by former British and US Open champion Johnny Miller, the course at Collingtree Park was opened for play in 1990. It’s a fantastic parkland layout where water plays a major part. The 18th is a classic par-5 finishing hole. Stretching to over 600 yards from the back pegs, water guards the entire left side demanding accuracy on drive, lay-up and approach.
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Northampton Golf Club was founded back in 1893 but the course with its current layout first opened in 1990 and was designed by Donald Steel. Over the past 20 years it has only undergone slight changes thanks to its toughness and picturesque setting.
There are plenty of scenic holes to enjoy but the signature two are the 2nd and 16th. Both par-3s, they require a well-struck iron shot over water and you should avoid the bunkers on the left-hand side of both greens too.
The 16th is in fact the first of a tough stretch of holes at the end of the round. 17 may only be 280 yards but accuracy is key and we recommend keeping the driver in the bag! Then 18 is a nerve-jangler as you’re tee shot goes over the water into a fairly narrow fairway.
One of the best pay and play facilities in the county, Brampton Heath first opened in 1995 after two years of construction. An undulating heathland track, many of the holes appear open and wide, but trouble lurks everywhere.
Take the first for example. The fairway from the tee appears wide and welcoming however out of bounds comes into play all the way down the left and the two fairway bunkers see a lot of action too.
Additionally many of the holes require you to try and play a draw or a fade with successful attempts given better shots into greens and a better chance to score. Whereas failure to do so will probably leave you blocked out a lot of the time.
Kingsthorpe Golf Club on the outskirts of Northampton is a real gem and an example of imaginative course design on a miniscule plot. Despite this course’s small stature, being built on just 73 acres of land, this par 69 is as fun as it is tricky, with blind tee shots and carries over a ravine guaranteed to leave a big impression.
The fifth hole in particular is a beauty. Measuring 442 yards off the tips, you drive down into a valley which, if you find the fairway, is sure to carry your ball to the bottom of the hill. From there, you play back up the severe hill which adds one or two extra clubs to the distance to the pin. A tough but lovely hole.
There are some good holes here, among them the 600+ yard 11th sweeping down towards those lodges, and the signature hole, the par-3 17th across a lake. But it was eclipsed by the 4th. It may have been 50 yards shorter than the 17th, but with a green boasting the characteristics of an upturned saucer, and only one real bail-out option (short right), it seemed much the harder hole from the tee.
Opened for play in 1977, Staverton Park to the south of Daventry was designed by Commander John Harris. Protected by sprawling bunkers, mature trees and four lakes, it’s a layout that sits comfortably in the rolling Northamptonshire countryside. There are extensive practice facilities on site and a team of teaching professionals headed by Richard Mudge are on hand to iron out any kinks in your game either pre or post round.
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