Downfield - Angus & Dundee - Scotland

Downfield Golf Club,
Turnberry Avenue,
Dundee,
DD2 3QP,
Scotland


  • +44 (0) 1382 825595

  • Margaret Stewart

  • James Braid, C K Cotton

  • Kenny Hutton


Visit Golfbreaks.com for a golf holiday at Downfield

The inaugural Scottish Open, sponsored by Sunbeam Electric, was held at Downfield Golf Club in 1972. The event moved to St Andrews (Old) in 1973 and was then dropped from the European Tour calendar until 1986 when the tournament went to Haggs Castle under new sponsorship.

Date

1972

Winner

Neil Coles

Country

England

On the outskirts of Dundee, lies Downfield Golf Club, a stunning parkland course little known outside Scotland. Paul Lawrie came through Open Qualifying here in 1999 and went on to win the Open at Carnoustie. Downfield also hosted the inaugural 1972 Scottish Open (sponsored by Sunbeam Electric), when England's Neil Coles won after a play-off with Wales’s Brian Huggett. Undoubtedly, Downfield is a gem and one of the most beautiful inland courses in Scotland, with more than 100 species of trees lining the manicured fairways.

A modest nine-hole course was laid out at Downfield at the turn of the century but the land was returned to agriculture during the First World War. The club was reformed in 1932 and the great James Braid laid out a new course. Houses now occupy most of the 1930s layout – only five original holes are incorporated into the course we play today, which was laid out by a Downfield Golf Club member with advice and guidance from C.K.Cotton.

Downfield represents a differing challenge, depending on which tees are used. From the back tees, the course measures more than 6,800 yards against a par of 73, but from the regular men’s tees, three par fives become testing, long par fours. There are six par fives for the ladies, against a par of 75. Water, in the shape of ditches and ponds, come into play on seven holes, adding to the obvious main hazard – the trees. The 11th though to the 13th are probably the best collection of holes. 11th and 13th are both tough par fours from the regular tees and the 12th is one of Gary Player’s favourite par threes, called “Davy Jones’s Locker”.

Dundee isn’t an obvious golfing destination, but include Downfield alongside Letham Grange and Edzell and you’ve got three of Scotland’s very best and least known inland courses.

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Reviews for Downfield

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Description: On the outskirts of Dundee, lies Downfield Golf Club, a stunning parkland course little known outside Scotland. Rating: 4.6 out of 6 Reviews: 16

Well worth a visit. Very playable, well designed and well kept. One of my favourite courses, doesn't have the same beauty or potential as Letham, and not quite as good all round as Rosemount but better than all the other local parklands.
5 / 6
Downfield
April 03, 2012


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This is certainly an excellent parkland course, but with respect to the club and its designer, the layout is wrong. The 9th finishes right in front of the clubhouse windows, providing entertainment for the clubhouse spectators and a nervy approach for players, but the 18th finishes in complete obscurity at the back of the car park. It would be easy enough to switch the course around!
4 / 6
Downfield
October 25, 2011


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Oh dear! What has happened to the condition of this wonderful course. Played it yesterday and the greens were very poor bumpy and slow. I know it has been a difficult winter but it is now mid May and I would have certainly expected better and greens on other courses in the local area are excellent. Hope this is just a temporary blip.
3 / 6
Downfield
May 12, 2011


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scott robertson
May 21, 2011
Thats a bit harsh! The greens at that time were good for the time of year and exceptional for the majority of inland courses in the area. After playing today, I could honestly say you must have been on a different course. They were excellent! Firm, true and rolling!
Had not played Downfield for a few years so yesterday on a lovely autumn day presented the perfect opportunity. I think I had forgotten just how good a course it is. Like many of the reviewers I am not a great lover of parkland golf but this is on exception. It was in beautiful condition with well-defined fairways and excellent greens for this time of year. From the demanding opening hole through to the terrific 18th this is a delight. The huge trees that line every hole are simply beautiful in their seasonal hues - how can there be so many different shades of green and brown? So many excellent holes: the par 5 4th has been improved with the addition of a pond lurking just to the right of he green, 11 and 12 are great holes and they are followed by two splendid long holes. I can't quite go to six balls for Downfield - five-and-a-half would be just right - so it will have to be five. But get there if you can (and their green fee in October is under £25.) Downfield should be much higher in the list; it is a far better course than nearby Rosemount which has an unaccountably favourable reputation. The only parkland course as good is Newmachar.
5 / 6
Downfield
October 16, 2010


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I played Downfield on Friday 20th August and found the whole experience fantastic. I have heard friends mention what a great course it was and that I should try to play it. The chance finally arrived on the 20th and I was not disappointed. Having played the Championship course at Carnoustie in the morning it had a lot to live up to and it did. There are some stunning golf holes. You need to be able to control your ball around the course. All areas of the course were in first class order and would have been able to grace any golf tournament. Particular favourites were the 4th with its great views, 9th long par 4 that test driving and your approach shots, 11th with its pond and burn in front, 16th magical stroke play hole and 18 which is an excellent finishing hole. If you get a chance to play you must. It is a truly great parkland course and is now my no1 in the area ahead of Rosemount.
6 / 6
Downfield
August 24, 2010


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Many many moons ago, before I discovered the “Links effect” I was a parkland golfer. There, I have said it, my dirty golfing secret is out, and confession is indeed good for the soul. But thanks to PG Wodehouse and Jim McCann (who sometimes dresses like Bertie Wooster, see our Shiskine page if you don’t believe me) I have now clutched links golf firmly to my bosom, and it is now my first love.

Sometimes however, I feel a tug of the old heartstrings that encourage me to return to my golfing genesis. That journey took me on the road and the miles to Dundee, to play Downfield. I have been aware of Downfield for decades as I can remember Peter Alliss hosting a programme from there in the 1970’s so it has always been on my playlist. First impressions of the place were extremely favourable with the Pro offering to put back our tee time to allow us a bit of respite from our 2 hour drive from Glasgow. Such was our eagerness to play the course however, we decided to press on.

Downfield 12th - photo by MPPJ The first thing that struck me about the place was the proliferation of trees, more than Percy Thrower could shake a stick at, an arborists dream, all colours, shapes and sizes beautifully sited to assist in the shaping and framing of holes, just wonderful. One disappointment was that the 4th and 5th holes were still on winter greens with the 4th, in particular a fantastic hole, c’est la vie. This was more than made up for by the quality of the rest of the course with the 13th and 15th the only holes that I didn’t really enjoy. The rest I found good or very good (2,7,8,14 and 16) but my 2 favourite holes were the celebrated 11th, Paddler’s Joy a 434 yards dogleg from the regulars with a double greenside water hazard and the 12th, an aesthetically pleasing short par 3, together giving Downfield a mini Amen Corner if you like. So in the end I didn’t really miss the links land too much as Downfield was worth every minute of the 4 hour round trip for 3 guys who simply revelled in going back to their roots. MPPJ.
4 / 6
Downfield
April 01, 2009


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Enjoyable but not overly demanding inland track which was in excellent condition when I played in late May 2008. Afforded very warm welcome from both staff and members.
4 / 6
Downfield
July 15, 2008


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Played 36 holes here on 20 April 2007 for excellent value of £49 (includes coffee & bacon rolls on arrival & soup and sandwiches at lunch). The course has many excellent holes - with perhaps the 11th being the pick of the crop. There is a good selection of par 3s - a very long 3rd, the 6th and the 12th stand out. This is not an easy course with many tight driving holes - and the sound of balls clattering into the trees was an all too frequent sound for our group. To score well, you certainly need to be straight off the tee. It's not overly long - so if you do hit the fairways, you will be rewarded with a good score. Our only gripe was the poor condition of the greens. Bearing in mind this course is a final qualifying course for the open this year at Carnoustie - I hope they get sorted - but when we played they were in a dreadful state - and this marred our enjoyment. Had the greens been as good as say, Blairgowrie, then I would have given it a much better rating - I'm sure that in the summer when the sun is shining the greens will be excellent - so if you intend to come and play, it might be worth paying a visit here in the summer/autumn. jbwt
4 / 6
Downfield
April 21, 2007


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Just returned from 4 superb days of golf in Scotland. Downfield is without question one of the best courses that our party has played in this area. The greens were true and in great condition and the overall layout was simply magnificent. If you are in this area you must play Downfield - you will not be disappointed.
5 / 6
Downfield
August 24, 2006


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Yes, you should play links golf in Scotland but there are a number of fine inland courses too and Downfield is right up there. This is a very fair course that will test all aspects of your game. The 2nd is a very demanding dog-leg and the 3rd a beast of a par 3! There is simply no let-up and the famous 11th is quite magnificent. Only the weak 15th and silly 16th fall short of the exceptionally high standard of the rest of the course.
5 / 6
Downfield
February 19, 2006


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