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Thomas Dai

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9-hole courses in GB&I worth playing
« on: June 27, 2013, 04:04:12 AM »
Iíve done some site searching hoping to find a list on GCA of 9-hole courses in GB&I that are worth playing. Alas, I couldnít find such a thing.

Iíve therefore put together an outline list based on courses that have received compliments either here on GCA or in various publications etc, plus from my own knowledge.

Several of those named are the Ďother courseí at more famous 18-holer locations, but that doesnít disqualifying them in my book.

Hereís the list to hopefully get some discussion going. They are in no particular order.

England

Royal Worlington & Newmarket - http://www.royalworlington.co.uk/page/course-description
Third 9 at Princes, Kent - http://www.princesgolfclub.co.uk/photo-gallery.php
Reigate Heath - http://www.reigateheathgolfclub.co.uk/course/hole_by_hole/
Channel course at Burnham & Berrow - http://www.burnhamandberrowgolfclub.co.uk/image_gallery.php
Warkworth, Northumberland - http://www.warkworthgolfclub.co.uk/CourseDetails.html
Alnmouth Village, Northumberland - http://www.alnmouthvillagegolfclub.co.uk/index.html
Isles of Scilly GC, Isles of Scilly - http://www.islesofscillygolfclub.co.uk/course
Headland course at Trevose, Cornwall - http://www.trevose-gc.co.uk/
Third 9 at Kings Norton, Birmingham - http://www.kingsnortongolfclub.co.uk/pages.php/index.html
Jubilee course at Rye* - http://www.ryegolfclub.co.uk/history_heritage/modern_times/
Crowlands Heath, East London* - http://www.crowlandsheath.co.uk/9-hole-golf-course-essex/
Hobbs Cross, East London* - http://www.hobbscrossgolfcentre.com/pages/our-courses
Hale, Cheshire* - http://www.halegolfclub.com/course.php
Knutsford, Cheshire* - http://www.knutsfordgolf.com/
Cheadle, Cheshire* - http://www.cheadlegolfclub.com/photo_show.php
Hanging Heaton, Yorkshire* - http://www.hhgc.org/the-course/

Scotland

Musselburgh Old, Edinburgh - http://www.musselburgholdlinks.co.uk/index.php?option=com_content&view=frontpage&Itemid=1
Anstruther, Fife - http://www.anstruthergolf.co.uk/gallery.php
St Olaf course at Cruden Bay - http://www.crudenbaygolfclub.co.uk/pages.php/course-map.html/b6d0694a-37f2-11df-921e-001ec9b331b2.html
Portmahomack (Tarbat), East Highlands - http://www.tarbatgolf.com/tarbatgolfclubth.html
Ullapool, North West Highland - http://www.ullapoolgolfclub.co.uk/course.htm
Durness, Far North West Highlands - http://www.durnessgolfclub.org/
Traigh, West Highlands - http://www.traighgolf.co.uk/index.html
Gairloch, West Highlands - http://www.gairlochgolfclub.co.uk/
Fort Augustus, Central Highlands - http://www.fortaugustusgc.webeden.co.uk/#/course/4542951340
Carradale, Kintyre peninsula in Argyll* - http://www.carradalegolf.com/gallery-1
Gigha, Gigha Island, off Kintyre peninsula in Argyll* - http://www.gigha.org.uk/today/golf/gighagolf.php
Tarbert, Kintyre peninsula in Argyll* - http://www.tarbertgolfclub.org.uk/#/photo-gallery/4549896275
New Galloway, SW Scotland* - http://www.nggc.co.uk/
Bonar Bridge, East Highlands* - http://www.bbagc.co.uk/index.asp?pageid=268417
Bridge of Allan, Central Scotland* - http://www.bofagc.com/
Abernethy, Highlands* - http://www.abernethygolfclub.com/index.html
Brahan, Highlands* - http://www.brahangolfclub.ch/
Rothes, Highlands* - http://www.rothesgolfclub.co.uk/
Covesea, North East* - http://www.covesealinks.com/

Wales

St Davidís City, Pembrokeshire - http://www.stdavidscitygolfclub.co.uk/#
Cwmrhydneuadd Golf Club, near Newquay, Cardiganshire* - http://www.cwmgolf.co.uk/aboutus.php
Ffestiniog, North Wales* - http://www.ffestinioggolf.org/cou.html
Bala, North Wales* - http://www.golffbala.co.uk/images.cfm
Ruthin, North Wales* - http://www.ruthinpwllglasgc.co.uk/image/tid/1

Ireland

Mulranny - http://mulrannygolfclub.com/
Cruit Island - http://www.cruitislandgolfclub.com/
Castlegregory - http://www.castlegregorygolflinks.com/
Bushfoot - http://www.bushfootgolfclub.co.uk/
Larne - http://www.larnegolfclub.co.uk/
Third 9 at Connemara - http://www.connemaragolflinks.com/
Sutton (Bay) - http://www.suttongolfclub.org/
Gweedore - http://www.gweedoregolfclub.com/
Scurmore course at Enniscrone - http://www.enniscronegolf.com/
Bomore course at County Sligo - http://www.countysligogolfclub.ie/bomore_course
Kilmore at Carne (opening in August) - http://www.flickr.com/photos/82453880@N06/show/
Otway* - http://www.rathmullan.net/otway-golf-club
Fintona* - http://fintonagolfclub.com/
Edenderry at Malone* - http://www.malonegolfclub.co.uk/
Yellow course at Portmarnock* - http://www.portmarnockgolfclub.ie/course-information/19-1st-hole-yellow
Bann course at Castlerock* - http://www.castlerockgc.co.uk/home
Connemara Isles* - http://www.connemaraislesgolf.com/
Parknasilla* (12 holes) - http://www.parknasillahotel.ie/golf/
Spanish Point* - http://www.spanishpointgolfing.com/
Buncrana* - http://www.buncranagolfclub.com/

Those marked * are additions following suggestions and comments.

I'm sure I've missed quite a few and that there are many other worthy contenders out there so any additions (or suggested deletions) plus comments as to whether or not they are worth playing, even for a bit of holiday fun golf or as a warm-up before playing the main course at the same location, would be welcome.

All the best
« Last Edit: June 28, 2013, 04:03:31 AM by Thomas Dai »

Důnal ” Ceallaigh

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Re: 9-hole courses in GB&I worth playing
« Reply #1 on: June 27, 2013, 04:47:59 AM »
Thomas,

You can add Otway and Fintona (said to be the best parkland 9-holer in Ulster) to the Ireland list. The third nine (Edenderry?) at Malone is also pretty good.

Also, not to get all political, but I'd drop the use of …ire as it means Ireland (i.e. the whole island incl. NI) in Gaeilge (Irish). I'd just stick with Ireland. Some people - not me of course  :D - take offence when …ire is used incorrectly; it's a long story.

Ally Mcintosh

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Re: 9-hole courses in GB&I worth playing
« Reply #2 on: June 27, 2013, 05:28:44 AM »
The use of "Eire" does seem to rile Irish people considerably.

Thomas - Depends on whether you are including just the real quality for people to actually consider as a legitimate stop on a tour?.... In which case there are a few you name that are third class citizens.... One you have missed though is the yellow nine at Portmarnock which is a genuine class act.

Hopefully the Kilmore nine in Mayo won't be seen as a separate nine for long... Guess we'll have to wait and see... Enjoy the Atlantic Challenge next week - look forward to hearing what you think of the three courses

Thomas Dai

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Re: 9-hole courses in GB&I worth playing
« Reply #3 on: June 27, 2013, 06:50:55 AM »
Donal & Ally,

Thanks for pointing this accidental political incorrectness out. I have edited the text accordingly. My apologies, no slight intended. Last thing I wish to do is rile folk.

I have also edited the text to add the other courses you've both mentioned. I shall search their websites as well.

Ally,

Very much looking forward to seeing the new holes/routing. I shall report back.

All the best

jeffwarne

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Re: 9-hole courses in GB&I worth playing
« Reply #4 on: June 27, 2013, 07:10:04 AM »
Ireland
Connemara Isles
Parknasilla
Spanish Point
Buncrana

Scotland
Carradale
Gigha
Tarbart


"Let's slow the damned greens down a bit, not take the character out of them." Tom Doak
"Take their focus off the grass and put it squarely on interesting golf." Don Mahaffey

Tony_Muldoon

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Re: 9-hole courses in GB&I worth playing
« Reply #5 on: June 27, 2013, 07:21:15 AM »
A few more where one can pass a happy hour and a half on if you are staying close by.

Wales
Cwmrhydneuadd Golf Club, near Newquay, Wales.  Quirky as you like, how they squeezed  the holes into a tiny descending valley. Thereís an awful row of conifers dividing two holes at the widest part, but otherwise it will leave you refreshed and enchanted.

England
Rye. Jubilee  Itís rather good as you might expect. Has multiple tees so more than the same routing if played twice.
In the East London area thereís two I really like
Crowlands Heath. Surprising fun to be had in Dagenham. I enjoy a 9 holer as long as it has  have a couple of longish Par 4ís in there as you watch your shots slip away.
Hobbs Cross. Essentially where I learned to play golf. While the lack of rough doesnít slow down the beginner you have to play well to score on those green.  I try to revisit once a year to see if Iíve really learned anything.


And one I havenít played
Ireland

The third 9 at Castlerock reputedly has some of the best holes.
Let's make GCA grate again!

jeffwarne

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Re: 9-hole courses in GB&I worth playing
« Reply #6 on: June 27, 2013, 07:24:04 AM »
Agreed on Castlerock-some very cool holes on the third nine if properly warmed up ;)
"Let's slow the damned greens down a bit, not take the character out of them." Tom Doak
"Take their focus off the grass and put it squarely on interesting golf." Don Mahaffey

Thomas Dai

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Re: 9-hole courses in GB&I worth playing
« Reply #7 on: June 27, 2013, 08:34:22 AM »
The original listing has been updated with the new courses suggested. The Yellow 9 at Portmarnock looks terrific from the website photos. I can see why Ally calls it a genuine class act - http://www.portmarnockgolfclub.ie/course-information/19-1st-hole-yellow

Are there any that are not worthy of inclusion?

Some, like Portmarnock, Carne, would certainly seem worthy of including in a tour. Some are maybe worth playing as a warm-up to the more famous course at the same location. Some are perhaps only worth playing for a bit of holiday fun-golf if you happen to be in the area and have a few clubs with you, whilst some may not represent great golf, however you choose to define that, but are so exceptionally spectacular or the setting so stunningly unique or beautiful that they are worth travelling to play or stop at en-route to somewhere else. There may be some duffers and third raters though, which could perhaps be deleted.

All the best

PS - Cruit Island frequently gets mentioned for being spectacular. Are there a decent number of photos of the course available as there seems to be a distinct lack of photos of the course available on the web and the clubs website has said "We will have a detailed description of the course here very soon." for ages.

Adam Lawrence

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Re: 9-hole courses in GB&I worth playing
« Reply #8 on: June 27, 2013, 08:38:43 AM »
I played New Galloway GC on the way to the Open at Turnberry in 2009. Interesting course - first two holes straight up the hill onto the moor, then six up on top and the ninth back down into the valley. Brutal climb to start, but the holes on the moor are pretty good. Somewhat out of the way, but worth a look if you find yourself in the area.
Adam Lawrence

Editor, Golf Course Architecture
www.golfcoursearchitecture.net

Principal, Oxford Golf Consulting
www.oxfordgolfconsulting.com

Author, 'More Enduring Than Brass: a biography of Harry Colt' (forthcoming).

Short words are best, and the old words, when short, are the best of all.

David_Tepper

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Re: 9-hole courses in GB&I worth playing
« Reply #9 on: June 27, 2013, 08:52:52 AM »
Thomas D. -

You can add Bonar Bridge in the Highlands.

DT

Mark_Rowlinson

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Re: 9-hole courses in GB&I worth playing
« Reply #10 on: June 27, 2013, 10:48:06 AM »
For real quirk in stunning locations I should commend to you both Ffestiniog and Bala in Wales, and I used to love the original nine holes at Abersoch amid the dunes. They added nine further (meadowland) holes which rather let it down, but if you could visit on a quiet day I'm sure nobody would object to your playing the original nine twice. I also have a lot of time for Ruthin (which is actually a ten-hole course) in hilly country with wonderful views.

Near me in Cheshire, Hale is a little charmer running through delightful country close to the River Bollin. Knutsford is also a fun course with several really good holes, but the last time I played it it was not in very good condition. There's a photo tour of it somewhere on GCA. I rather like Cheadle, one of the oldest courses in this part of the country, with several really old-world holes.

Jim Eder

Re: 9-hole courses in GB&I worth playing
« Reply #11 on: June 27, 2013, 11:12:59 AM »
I would add Bridge of Allan, a fine and what I understand pretty intact Tom Morris that is easy to get to right off the A9 (near Stirling).

Niall C

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Re: 9-hole courses in GB&I worth playing
« Reply #12 on: June 27, 2013, 02:24:34 PM »
Thomas

There's a few to add up in the Highlands, indeed you could have quite an enjoyable 9-holer tour up that way.

Abernethy Golf Club at Nethy Bridge a few miles from Boat of Garten. Not played it, only walked it. Great turf, lovely holes inclusding a par 3 over a public road. Good old fashioned golf in lovely surroundings. A favourite of Jon Wiggett.

Brahan - speaking of Jon, he's built his own nine-holer in the highlands that can be played in reverse. Haven't yet been there but have heard good reports. Somewhere on here, there is a thread with some photos.

Rothes - a few miles north of Nethy Bridge on the road to Elgin. Not the same quality of turf but a couple of really good holes. On a hillside overlooking the local distillery. Apparently Graeme McDowell used to go his holidays to Rothes as a kid and has played it a bit.

Covesea - a genuine links located next cove up from Moray GC at Lossiemouth. If you think Cullen is quirky, wait to you see this place. Seastacks to be driven over on a couple of holes and also one of the best par 3's of c. 110 yards without a bunker.

Niall

Thomas Dai

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Re: 9-hole courses in GB&I worth playing
« Reply #13 on: June 27, 2013, 03:10:04 PM »
All,

Thanks for all your suggestions which I've incorporated into the original list.

As Niall suggests, there is scope for an enjoyable 9-hole tour incorporate some of these. Certainly some potential for combining several courses in nice loops for sure.

I've looked at the websites of the courses suggested and there are some real crackers, a real Heinz 57 varieties, high spec, low spec, links, meadowland, cliff top, heathland, fences around the greens. There are some I'd certainly like to drop in and play......a quick 9-holes and then off to another venue.

Niall, Covesea looks to be a wee gem - http://www.covesealinks.com/

More suggestions welcome.

All the best

Phil McDade

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Re: 9-hole courses in GB&I worth playing
« Reply #14 on: June 27, 2013, 03:12:55 PM »


Covesea - a genuine links located next cove up from Moray GC at Lossiemouth. If you think Cullen is quirky, wait to you see this place. Seastacks to be driven over on a couple of holes and also one of the best par 3's of c. 110 yards without a bunker.

Niall

Niall:

This looks absolutely outstanding -- how long has it been around? It's new as of the year 2000, or I surely would've played it. Know anything about how built/who designed it?

Jon Wiggett

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Re: 9-hole courses in GB&I worth playing
« Reply #15 on: June 27, 2013, 06:37:56 PM »
Phil,

Covesea is on the site of what used to be the 12 hole par 3 course. It has been designed and built by the owner. Good course for a quick nine with friendly cafe and good food.

Thomas,

I have always had a soft spot for Abernethy which is as Niall describes it and Ullapool is also good fun. Further south, I always liked Hanging Heaton on the outskirts of Dewsbury. My place (Brahan) is just beginning to shape up and offers a good stiff challenge for a 9 holer.

Jon

Niall C

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Re: 9-hole courses in GB&I worth playing
« Reply #16 on: June 29, 2013, 10:15:45 AM »
Phil

When I was living up that way I used to practice on Covesea during the period when they were turning it into a 9 holer. I think what they largely did was join together some of the par 3's to make some par 4's and you can still see evidence of the old greens. My understanding is that a lot of the holes are as per the original 12 holer but perhaps with new greens, I'm not sure. Terrific fun but not a course that you'd want to play with new Pro-V's !

A few more nine-holers up north that I forgot to mention;

Blair Atholl GC - or Invertilt as its also known. Sits right beside the A9. A lot of these nine holers tend to be short with a lot of par 3's and no par 5's but this one at least has some decent length holes without losing the fun element. Certainly worth a hit.

Strathtay GC - another wee gem with some great par 3's, cross over holes and quite a lot of ups and downs without being too tiring. Another good fun holiday course thats worth a 10 minute detour off the A9.

Dalmunzie GC - near the Spittal of Glenshee, this course has two claims to fame, one being that its the highest nine-holer in the UK and second being that it was designed by Dr MacKenzie. Well worth a 15-20 min detour off the A9.

Niall
 

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