Located in part of the Hirsel Estate – the ancestral home of Lord David Douglas-Home, son of the former Prime Minister, Sir Alec Douglas-Home – the course is laid out over rolling Borders terrain right on the border between England and Scotland.
Although founded in 1948, it took another fifty years before members of Hirsel Golf Club were able to play on a full 18-hole layout when the course was extended to its present 6,024 yards.
The River Leet features on several holes, though its presence is pleasing to the eye rather than threatening. Of more danger is the out of bounds to be found at no fewer than eleven holes on the card. There are also a few blind tee shots and blind approaches to contend with around the course, adding interest to the round.
The four par three holes are worthy of mention. The first on the front nine is the 3rd; a 243-yarder called “Bell”. It takes a fair old blow from the tee to get close as the hole plays uphill and the green is entirely blind. The next two short holes – “Kingfisher” and “Spa Well” – are the 7th and 10th which are both protected by water to the front of the green. The 177-yard 14th, named “Cheviot” plays to a two-tiered green with three bunkers in front.
Conditioning of the Hirsel course is famed, so much so that some who should know a good course when they play one have called it “the Augusta of the Borders”.