County Louth - Louth - Ireland

County Louth Golf Club,
Baltray,
Drogheda,
County Louth,
Ireland


  • +353 (0) 41 988 1530

  • Liam Murphy

  • Cecil Barcroft, Tom Simpson, Molly Gourlay

  • Paddy McGuirk


There is generally a certain level of anticipation when one plays a course for the first time. The approach road to the links of County Louth, or Baltray as it is better known, named after the local fishing village, is especially uplifting. This is a course that has remained relatively anonymous, except to those in the know. It is one of Ireland’s secrets.

County Louth Golf Club was established in 1892 but Tom Simpson and Molly Gourlay designed the present course in 1938. In 2003, Tom Mackenzie made some minor changes to the layout, most notably the addition of new tees which has stretched the yardage beyond 7,000 yards.

Darren Clarke won the East of Ireland Championship in 1989, an amateur stroke play event held at County Louth since 1941, although it is unlikely that anybody will beat Joe Carr’s record. Joe Carr was the “East” champion 12 times between 1941 and 1969. Amazingly, Joe’s son Roddy won the 1970 “East” championship.

Baltray has no weak holes. The course is laid out in two loops, and most holes run in different directions. However, the greens are County Louth’s hallmark – they are among the very best in the whole of Ireland. If you can avoid three putting for 18 holes, then you have the right to claim you’re a great putter.

County Louth developed two of Ireland’s best lady golfers. In 1938, Clarrie Tiernan was the first Irish woman to play in the Curtis Cup but the USA beat Great Britain and Ireland 5½ 3½ at the Essex County Club in Massachusetts. It was Clarrie’s rival, Philomena Garvey, who was the most successful post war Irish player. Phil was five times a finalist in the Ladies British Amateur Championship, winning once, in 1957 at Gleneagles. Phil also won a record 15 Irish Close titles in a span of 18 years from 1946.

Although County Louth is a championship links golf course, golfers of all levels can enjoy it. The back nine is especially entertaining with a number of holes running close to the shore with distant views towards the Mountains of Mourne. County Louth hosted the Nissan Irish Open in July 2004.

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Description: The approach road to the links of County Louth Golf Club, or Baltray as it is better known, named after the local fishing village, is especially uplifting. Rating: 8.5 out of 10 Reviews: 22
TaylorMade
Hugh
Baltray is one of the true hidden gems in golf. There are no tricks here and few really memorable holes but there is not one single weak hole, each is a supreme test of links golf. With a number of elevated tee shots and greens that are tucked away here and there, this is just a wonderful course. The remote location only adds to the charm and it is most definitely worth making the trip here. If you can avoid the bunkers and find the rolling putting surfaces and then read the greens well, you may be in for a good score…if you can’t, you’re in serious trouble. Baltray is reputed to have the best greens in Ireland and I’ve played here three times and I can’t disagree. The welcome here, as you would expect in Ireland, is warm and friendly. The onsite Golf Hotel is also good value and the food is magnificent. Play here at all costs; County Louth is as good as any course in Ireland.
April 18, 2005
8 / 10
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Sally
Not many people know about County Louth, presumably because the golfing masses head for Kerry. If only they knew what they were missing. This is a classic links, which will test the best golfers, which it will undoubtedly do in the forthcoming Nissan Irish Open. The only critisism is that it can be tough to get on this course due to all the competitions e.g the East of Ireland Amateur Championship - so make sure you book in advance...this is a course to savour and enjoy.
July 20, 2004
8 / 10
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