Five Of The Best Former European Tour Venues

Over the years, the European Tour has visited many of our loveliest courses - some well-known, some less so...

best former european tour venues
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Over the years, the European Tour has visited many of our loveliest courses - some well-known, some less so...

Five Of The Best Former European Tour Venues 

La Moye - Pictured above

Stats: Par 72, 6,665 yards

Originally created by local headmaster George Boomer more than a century ago, this excellent clifftop course was redesigned in the 1930s by James Braid.

It was further upgraded by Henry Cotton in the 1970s prior to becoming the home of the Jersey Open.

This was to be a regular fixture on the European Tour from 1978 to 1995, producing champions of the calibre of Sandy Lyle, Tony Jacklin and Ian Woosnam.

More recently, Martin Hawtree has made changes at three holes and there are panoramic views from start to finish.

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Ashburnham

Stats: Par 72, 6,627 yards

best former european tour venues

This beautiful links along the south coast of Wales staged what is now the Tour’s flagship event, the PGA Championship, in 1959 and 1969.

It produced two famous winners in Dai Rees and Bernard Gallacher, and subsequently hosted the 1976 Martini Tournament, won by a young Sam Torrance.

All three went on to become Ryder Cup captains.

The club continues to host important events, and the JH Taylor design is a fine and very enjoyable test which offers exceptional value for money.

Fulford

Stats: Par 72, 6,743 yards

best former european tour venues

For those of a certain vintage, there are not many golf shots that linger in the memory more vividly than Bernhard Langer’s approach to the 17th green in the 1981 B&H International.

The German’s 9-iron had finished 15’ up an ash tree from where he miraculously chipped onto the green, just missing his putt for par before finishing a shot behind the eventual winner, Tom Weiskopf.

This attractive heathland/parkland mix was home to no fewer than 23 European Tour events as well as the inaugural Women’s British Open in 1976.

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Killarney - Killeen

Stats: Par 72, 6,652 yards

best former european tour venues

The beautiful parkland Killeen course was host to four Irish Opens, all of which attracted strong international fields with the first two won by Nick Faldo in his prime a quarter of a century ago.

The opening holes are the most dramatic and photogenic on the course as they hug the shore of Lough Leane with the mountains beyond.

There is also a strong finish, and the closing hole on the neighbouring Mahoney’s Point course is picture perfect.

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Loch Lomond

Stats: Par 72, 6,730 yards

A decade or so after his win at Fulford and twice that following his Open victory at Royal Troon, Tom Weiskopf designed this sumptuous course alongside the stunning Loch Lomond.

From 1996 up until just six years ago, it hosted first the World Invitational and then the Scottish Open.

Staunchly private, it is nonetheless one of the finest inland courses in Europe winning unanimous praise from all who have been lucky enough to beg, steal or borrow a game there.

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Rob Smith
Rob Smith

Rob Smith has been playing golf for more than 40 years and been a contributing editor for Golf Monthly since 2012 specialising in course reviews and travel. He has now played 1,150 different courses in almost 50 countries. Despite lockdowns and travel restrictions last year, he still managed to play 80 different courses during 2021, 43 of them for the first time. This included 21 in 13 days on a trip to East Lothian in October. One of Rob's primary roles is helping to prepare the Top 100 and Next 100 Courses of the UK&I, of which he has played all but nine. Rob is a member of Tandridge Golf Club in Surrey where his handicap hovers around 16. You can contact him at r.smith896@btinternet.com.