By Rob Smith published
Bramshaw Golf Club Manor Course Review
GF £75wd, £90we
Par 71, 6,400 yards
GM Verdict An attractive parkland course running through mature woodland where placement from the tee is key
Favourite Hole The long par-5 2nd with the green set just beyond a stream running through a gulley
Bramshaw Golf Club in the New Forest was formed in 1880 and is blessed with two interesting and diverse 18-hole layouts, this one and the Forest Course. The Manor is by far the younger and reached its half-century in 2021. It is also the longer of the two, just stretching to 6,400 yards from the tips.
Right next door to the excellent Bell Inn at Bramshaw, the Manor Course opens with a reasonably gentle par 4, but then immediately steps up a gear with a fine three-shotter. This is played to a green nestling in among the trees beyond an intimidating gully with the lovely stream, Shepherd’s Gutter, running though it. The next is a demanding par 4 but there is some relief at the 4th, a par 3 and SI17. Five and six both work their way left to right to the northern end of the course.
You then turn back to play a strong par 3 made all the tougher by tall pines short and left, and sand protecting the right. The 8th is another tough par 4 before the front nine concludes with a short hole with a clever and very appropriate bell-shaped green with the bunker short representing its clanger!
The next two take you back almost to the clubhouse, with the 11th a tough two-shotter that favours a right-to-left drive round the corner.
Many will fancy their chances at the short par-4 12th, just 273 yards from the white tees. This is followed by a medium-length par 3 and a very pronounced right-to-left dogleg at the 14th.
The closing four holes are all interesting and challenging in different ways with the par-5 15th the longest hole on the course and playing almost like a double dogleg.
The 16th is 391 yards from the back tee up to a two-tier green, but what goes up must come down and this is followed by a fine downhill par 4. The closing hole is another sharp dogleg, this time to the left, where it’s all too easy to get blocked out.
The approach to the 18th demands your final carry over one of the many streams that characterise this and the nearby Forest Course. The Manor Course is one of many fine courses in Hampshire and it offers a very good blend of golfing strategy and woodland beauty. Just minutes away is Paultons Golf Centre, a part of the same golfing group, while the Bell Inn at Bramshaw is right next door and makes for the perfect base to play here.
Rob Smith has been playing golf for over 40 years and been a contributing editor for Golf Monthly since 2012 specialising in course reviews and travel. He has now played well over 1,100 courses in almost 50 countries. Since travel restarted in May 2021, he has played around 80 different courses, more than 40 for the first time. This includes 21 in 13 days on a trip to East Lothian in October. One of his main roles is helping to prepare the Top 100 and Next 100 Courses of the UK&I, of which he has played all but 10. Rob is a member of Tandridge Golf Club in Surrey where his handicap hovers around 16. You can contact him at email@example.com
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