What Is A Revetted Bunker?

We look at this distinctive type of trap and explain how it's constructed

A revetted bunker pictured on a golf course
(Image credit: Getty Images)

What Is A Revetted Bunker?

What exactly are revetted bunkers and what does the word 'revetted' mean?

They are a common feature on a vast number of courses across the British Isles, including the Open Championship venues, the best links courses in the UK and many of the UK and Ireland's top 100 golf courses.

The dictionary definition of revetted is: "to face, as an embankment, with masonry or other material." It comes from the French word 'revetir', which means 'to put on, wear or don.'

In golfing terms, a revetted bunker is one where sods (grass and the part of the soil beneath it held together by roots or a piece of thin material) are used on top of each other to create a layered effect, which helps to fortify the bunker and play mind games with the golfer.

A close up of a bunker on a links course

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Other benefits include better on-course aesthetics and a reduction in wind-based erosion, which can be a real issue with non-revetted bunkers.

Construction starts at the base and works its way upwards in a sphere all the way around the bunker. There will be between 25 and 50 layers, depending on the size and depth of the trap. A typical revetted bunker costs around £1,000 to build.

They are often employed as strategic features, too, as the grass around them tends to be shaved, attracting more golf balls and essentially doubling or tripling the size of the bunker from a strategic point of view.

After the bunker has been revetted, the next stage is to excavate a hole for drainage purposes, before coring - which includes cleaning and smoothing the bunker, compacting the bunker floor and distributing the top soil - and sand filling.

Revetted bunkers, which can also be known as 'pot bunkers' when in the fairway of links courses, look great but they're definitely ones to avoid when playing a round of golf.

Sam Tremlett
E-commerce Editor

A golfer for most of his life, Sam is Golf Monthly's E-commerce Editor.

Working with golf gear and equipment over the last six years, Sam has quickly built outstanding knowledge and expertise on golf products ranging from drivers, to balls, to shoes. 

He combines this knowledge with a passion for helping golfers get the best gear for them, and as such Sam manages a team of writers that look to deliver the most accurate and informative reviews and buying advice. This takes the form of buying guides, reviews, supporting gear content as well as creating deal content.

This is so the reader can find exactly what they are looking for, at a good price.

Sam now spends most of his time testing and looking after golf gear content for the website, whilst he is also responsible for all content related to golf apparel. 

Additionally Sam oversees Golf Monthly voucher/coupon content which seeks to find you the best offers and promotions from well-known brands like Callaway, TaylorMade and many more.

Unfortunately, Sam is not a member of any club at the moment but regularly gets out on the golf course to keep up the facade of having a single-figure handicap. 

Sam's What's In The Bag: 

Driver: Cobra LTDxLS (9 degrees) 

Fairway Wood: Ping G430 Max (15 degrees), Nike Covert Tour 2.0 (19 degrees) 

Irons (4-PW): Titleist AP2 

Wedges: Titleist Vokey SM7 54˚, 58˚ 

Putter: Scotty Cameron Phantom X 5.5 

Ball: Srixon Z-Star Diamond

Shoes: G/FORE Gallivanter/Nike Air Zoom Victory Tour 3/Cuater The Ringer
(For off the course he goes for Nike Jordan 1 Low G shoes as well)