Tyneside Golf Club Course Review
Par 70, 6,068 yards
GM Verdict - A fine Colt course that flies under the radar a little but deserves a wider reputation
Favourite Hole - The down-and-up 10th where you tee off from a hugely elevated tee then climb back up to the green
Set above the Tyne at Ryton a few miles west of Newcastle, Tyneside Golf Club, with its beautiful Harry Colt course, is one of the oldest clubs in the north-east of England having started out in 1879 and is considered by some to be one of the best courses in County Durham. Today’s course was laid out by Colt in 1911, and much of the front nine plays over the higher ground a little further from the river before you drop down closer to the valley floor early on the back nine, then climb steeply away again on 14 before looping back round the wonderful old pavilion clubhouse for the final flourish.
The opener may be relatively gentle, but the 2nd is anything but, a brute of a long par 4 where the fairway pinches in around a pond in the driving zone for longer hitters or those playing off the yellows.
The 4th is then a great hole playing over a crest and then down quite steeply to the green. You’ll get an extra 20 yards of run here if you can also get your drive over the smaller second crest, leaving yourself a very short iron in. The 4th green is set very close to the green of the par-5 7th coming back the other way. Standing in the fairways of both holes gazing down at their greens is quite an exhilarating experience in the right light. There’s something about playing down to a green, isn’t there?
The 8th takes you downhill, while the excellent par-3 9th across a sideslope also sees you regain the elevation lost on your way down the 8th as you climb to its small green. The 10th is then an absolute cracker of a par 5, plunging down precipitously from a hugely elevated tee and taking you over a stream before climbing steeply to the green. From the 10th green take a moment to soak up the views – you can even see Close House from here – before heading back down and over that same stream to a green set perilously close to a ravine on the right.
Things get a little fiddly for a moment as you climb to the extraordinary 12th tee complex before playing back over the 11th green and that ravine to a heavily bunkered green 177 yards away. The run for home then starts with by far the narrowest hole on the course, which pinches in further in the driving zone before playing up to a long, yet extremely slender shelf green cut into the slope.
The 14th climbs sharply back up. It’s the first of two short par 4s, with the 15th then playing to a green the other side of the clubhouse. This hole represents a great chance to get one back on the card before the final trio, which starts with a classic, short Colt par 3 behind the clubhouse. Miss the green anywhere here and you'll almost certainly end up in sand.
The 17th and 18th aren’t particularly long holes, but will perhaps play harder than their yardage as you seek to put the finishing touches to your round before retiring to the classic old-school clubhouse, which evokes welcome memories of a bygone era.
Jeremy Ellwood has worked in the golf industry since 1993 and for Golf Monthly since 2002 when he started out as equipment editor. He is now a freelance journalist writing mainly for Golf Monthly across the whole spectrum from courses and Rules to equipment and instruction. He also edits The Golf Club Secretary Newsletter, a highly regarded trade publication for golf club secretaries and managers, and has authored or co-authored three books and written for a number of national papers including The Telegraph and The Independent. He is a senior panelist for Golf Monthly's Top 100 UK & Ireland Course Rankings and has played all of the Top 100 plus 91 of the Next 100, making him well-qualified when it comes to assessing and comparing our premier golf courses. He has now played well over 950 golf courses worldwide in 35 countries, right across the spectrum from the humblest of nine-holers in the Scottish Highlands to the very grandest of international golf resorts, but put him on a links course anywhere and he will be blissfully content.
Jezz can be contacted via Twitter - @JezzEllwoodGolf
Jeremy is currently playing...
Driver: Ping G425 LST 10.5˚ (draw setting), Mitsubishi Tensei AV Orange 55 S shaft
3 wood: Ping G425 Max 15˚ (set to flat +1), Mitsubishi Tensei AV Orange 65 S shaft
Hybrid: Ping G425 17˚, Mitsubishi Tensei CK Pro Orange 80 S shaft
Irons 3-PW: Ping i525, True Temper Dynamic Gold 105 R300 shafts
Wedges: Ping Glide 4.0 50˚ and 54˚, 12˚ bounce, True Temper Dynamic Gold 105 R300 shafts
Putter: Ping Fetch 2021 model, 33in shaft (set flat 2)
Ball: Varies but mostly now TaylorMade Tour Response
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