Golf was first played at Langland Bay Golf Club in 1904 – three years, almost to the day, after the first meeting of like-minded golfers who decided to form a club. The Langland Bay course is a charming, old-fashioned layout, located on seaside meadowland between the bays of Langland and Caswell on the Gower Peninsula.
With delightful changes in elevation throughout, Langland Bay is not long at 6,026 yards (reflected in a Standard Scratch Score one less than the par of 70) but what it doesn’t have in yardage it makes up for in many other ways; plenty of rough, lots of bunkers, small, fast greens and several water hazards – all of which, along with typical coastal weather, combine to protect par on the course.
The round begins with a long par three at the whimsically named “Bridge Too Far,” followed by a relatively short par five. There then follows a sequence of eight par fours, beginning with back-to-back short holes (both under 260 yards) at the 3rd and 4th and ending with the toughest hole on the back nine, “Shellard’s Rise.” During this run of holes, the uphill 6th is one of the hardest on the whole Gower coast, and the 343-yard 8th, called “Braid’s Choice,” is named in honour of the course architect, James Braid.
The three remaining par three holes are played at 11, 13 and 16 with the last of them, “Death or Glory,” considered the signature hole at Langland Bay. Played close to the coastal path on the top of the cliffs, trouble seems to lie everywhere from the tee (except on the green) so make sure you find the putting surface otherwise a good scoring round may come to an abrupt end!
And if you do survive the 16th and make it safe onto the home green of the short par four final hole, the name of the 18th will raise a smile and give you pause for thought of what’s to come, maybe, in the clubhouse, “A Drop o’ Beer”!
Played Langland Bay in June 2016. Excellant views, reasonable greens and a variety of holes. Fairly confined and as a result quite a few holes criss-cross which is not always condusive to a relaxed game. Favourite hole was number 7 which is a delightful par 4 overlooking Caswell Bay. Worth playing but not in same league as Pennard