Ranfurly Castle - Renfrewshire - Scotland

Ranfurly Castle Golf Club,
Golf Road,
Bridge of Weir,
Renfrewshire,
PA11 3HN,
Scotland


  • +44 (0) 1505 612609

  • John King

  • Willie Campbell, Andrew Kirkcaldy, James Braid

  • Tom Eckford

Ranfurly Castle lies to the western edge of the large village of Bridge of Weir, which prospered in the 18th and 19th centuries thanks to cotton mills and tanneries. Considering its close proximity to Glasgow, Ranfurly Castle Golf Club remains relatively undiscovered, except to those in the know.

Willie Campbell laid out the club’s original 9-hole course then, after moving to its present location in 1905, Andrew Kirkcaldy established the club’s new 18-hole layout. James Braid made some alterations in 1923, seven years before six new holes were introduced, following the purchase of 48 acres of additional land.

Its hilly moorland aspect provides a great sense of adventure and escape. This course really should be better known. In 2003, the club hosted the £10,000 Tartan Golf International Trainees Matchplay Championship, which commenced with an 18-hole pro-am with one of the amateurs in each team being under the age of 14.

The opening two holes at Ranfurly Castle take you steeply uphill to a high moorland plateau where the views open up. Fourteen holes play on top of the moor before the closing two holes bring you back down to the sanctuary of the clubhouse. Measuring less than 6,300 yards, Ranfurly Castle is not a slog, but when the wind blows – as it so often does on the top – it presents a stern challenge. With just one par five and only three par threes, scoring well on this par 70 course is not as easy as it first appears.

Ranfurly Castle is often bracketed alongside Gleneagles and certainly there is a hint of elements of both the Queen’s and King’s courses, but Ranfurly Castle is much less contrived and it’s much quieter too. It’s certainly a gem if ever there was one and it’s also great value. Well worth a visit… but beware of the wicked, slick greens.

If the above article is inaccurate, please let us know by clicking here

Write a review

Reviews for Ranfurly Castle

Av. Reviewers Score:
Description: There is a hint of Gleneagles at Ranfurly Castle Golf Club, a mixture of heathland and moorland holes. A hidden gem if ever there was one. Rating: 4.6 out of 6 Reviews: 7

As Jim McCann mentioned, reviews for Ranfurly Castle have been few and far between in recent times with the spotlight instead falling on its near neighbour at Kilmacolm, This was remedied recently on a gloriously warm June afternoon, and what a delight it turned out to be. We were advised prior to teeing off that the greens were super slick and the rough penal and that was indeed the case. The course was wonderfully presented with the greens as good as anything I have encountered this year. A tough start of 3 stout two shotters Ranfurly Castle Golf Course - Photo by reviewerbegin the round, the first two being up hill all the way. However, it was the group of holes 4 through 6 that I enjoyed the most in the outward 9. Two of these holes are par 3’s which I inexplicably dissed in my last review of 6 years ago, and although I wouldn’t necessarily call the carries heroic, they are very challenging, interesting and far from mundane. Continuing the round I also enjoyed the short par 4 10th, the par 3 13th (what was I thinking about in my last review?) and the tough finishing holes of 17 and 18. I single these holes out but I didn’t feel that there was a weak hole during the round. I am glad that I had the chance to re-visit Ranfurly Castle, not only to make amends for my par 3 faux pas from all those years ago, but also to compare Ranfurly Castle to the now lofty Kilmacolm and after having the pleasure of playing both tracks in the space of one week. I feel that they match up pretty well, you can make a case for rating Ranfurly Castle the better of the two, as in my mind, it is a more stringent test of golf. At the very least an argument can be made for considering Ranfurly Castle in the next Scottish top 100 chart along and a rise up the Renfrewshire list and I hope that it is not another 6 years before I revisit Ranfurly Castle. MPPJ
5 / 6
Ranfurly Castle
July 11, 2014


Was this review helpful? Yes / No
0 people found this review helpful
Respond to above review
Played Ranfurly Castle on an afternoon after playing at Pollok in the morning and it turned out to be everything Pollok wasn’t, namely interesting, challenging and engaging. I suppose that I shouldn’t have been surprised after recently playing at near neighbours Old Ranfurly, which I enjoyed and Kilmacolm, which is a personal favourite of mine. If I Ranfurly Castle Golf Course - Photo by reviewerfound Pollok to be bland Ranfurly Castle kept you on your toes throughout with two tough par 4’s to start and finish and a plethora of many a challenge in-between. I must mention the par 3’s which are very good (play the 5th from the medals if you are allowed as it makes it a far more interesting proposition). The other recent reviews have mentioned the condition of the course and it cant be understated how good it was, bathed in the Renfrewshire sunshine, it was a true delight. As touched on in the other reviews comparisons with Kilmacolm are almost inevitable and although the recent reviews seem to favour Ranfurly Castle my preference is for Kilmacolm due to years of playing there in open competitions however, I am hoping that this won’t be my last visit to Ranfurly Castle and who knows? my opinion may change. MCMC
5 / 6
Ranfurly Castle
July 11, 2014


Was this review helpful? Yes / No
1 person found this review helpful
Respond to above review
I can’t believe there’s been no review posted for this course in almost six years – perhaps that’s one of the reasons why Ranfurly Castle lies in a relatively modest 4th position within the regional listings and outside the national Top 100 (when I have the course sitting comfortably within my personal Top 100 for Scotland)? Nearby Kilmacolm has attracted much attention in the rankings in the last couple of years (and rightly so, as it’s a cracking wee track) but, with the narrow beam of the spotlight falling on that other fine moorland layout, a mere 4 miles to the north west of here, it means that this place has been largely overlooked, something that really needs to be addressed. I revisited the course yesterday and have to say I was mightilyRanfurly Castle Golf Course - Photo by reviewer impressed once again by the layout. The previous reviewer was more than a tad harsh to term the par threes here as “uninspiring and mundane”. I can assure you that all three short holes on the card are very good, with the two on the front nine (“Wee De’il” at the 5th and “Crannag” at the 7th) of a particularly strong vintage as both call for heroic carries across broken ground from elevated tees to distant greens – absolutely thrilling holes that get the pulse racing just a little faster when you’re standing on the tee. The 8th, played to a raised two-tier green, was again as difficult as its stroke index of 1 might suggest (even without a wind blowing against) and the horseshoe of five pot bunkers protecting the front of the green at the short par four 10th really does form a formidable obstacle in the pursuit of a birdie opportunity. The blind tee shots over rock escarpments at holes 9 and 15 also offer a modicum of quirk out on the moor before the course routing freewheels back down to the clubhouse over the final two holes. The fourth paragraph in the above course article states: “beware of the wicked, slick greens”. Well, I can certainly vouch for the sleek, polished nature of those putting surfaces, which were easily the best that I’ve putted on for a long time. Add the springy, free-draining quality of the heaving fairways at Ranfurly Castle and you have a wonderful golfing recipe that’s surely enough to satisfy the appetite of even the most demanding golfer. Jim McCann
5 / 6
Ranfurly Castle
June 17, 2014


Was this review helpful? Yes / No
0 people found this review helpful
Respond to above review
Response
Conor toal
June 22, 2014
Ranfurly Castle is an amazing track, this should be a must in the top 100 list. The greens are firm and extremely fast. This course is very tough to as the rough is extremely thick and the fairways are narrow! It is a great course and a real test for golf, somebody has to review this again.
If I am being honest here I wasn’t expecting too much from Ranfurly Castle. I had visited the course previously, to take some photos and had a wee look round at holes 1,2, 17 and 18 and I found it so so. How wrong could I be, as the course blossoms and reveals its true nature on the plateau of ground, build on lava rock, which houses holes 3 – 16. That is not to say that the 4 aforementioned holes are weak, it is just the moorland part of the course is better. Hole 3 is the only par 5 on the course and a struggle to play when the wind gets up. The 4th hole is the first of numerous dog legs where you eventually play to a green guarded and part obscured by trees. The 5th is the first of the par 3’s. I have to been honest to say that the only disappointment I had during my round was that I didn’t really like any of the par 3’s as I found them fairly uninspiring and mundane, The 9th is a very interesting driving hole where you have a blind tee shot over a wall to a generous fairway. It is at this hole that perhaps is the prettiest part of the course as the 9th green sits adjacent to a flower filled field with the hills as a backdrop, stunning! If you take out the 14th (a par 3 you won’t be surprised to hear) it is at holes 10 through 16 that the juices start to flow. Holes filled with elevation changes, trees, humps and hollows and interesting driving options, this part has the lot. The 18th sees you driving down towards the magnificent clubhouse with Glasgow, fifteen or so miles in the distance. The clubhouse has a Charles Rennie MacIntosh feel about it, in fact, there are many Macintoshesque symbols at the club from the hole boards to the ballmarkers. The one lesson I will take from Ranfurly Castle is that you should get to know a course properly before you judge it. Ranfuly Castle is a tough, but fair, test of golf and a course which will delight all level of golfers. MPPJ
4 / 6
Ranfurly Castle
July 06, 2008


Was this review helpful? Yes / No
0 people found this review helpful
Respond to above review
First of all, what an impressive, multi-storied old clubhouse here – it’s enormous! I’d been here before last year to take photos near the clubhouse and it appeared to be a very well maintained parkland layout. It’s only as you climb higher onto the moor above that you really get to know the real course. There’s a lot going on up there - elevation changes, dog legs, blind shots, coffin bunkers and short par fours (at the 4th and 10th holes). Throw in some great rugged scenery, a variety of trees, ferns, gorse and purple heather and you have a heady mix that could easily make you think you were playing in Perthshire and not just a few miles from the big metropolis. The only par five on the card, “Valley” at the 3rd was an excellent hole but my favourite was the toughest on the course, the 454-yard, par four 8th (“Rowans”) at the furthest point from the clubhouse. It is not the toughest track you will play but it is a very fair test with excellent greens that will test your putting mettle. Jim McCann
4 / 6
Ranfurly Castle
August 15, 2007


Was this review helpful? Yes / No
0 people found this review helpful
Respond to above review
Had a lovely 36 holes here last week on a warm, sunny day. Had never played it before but was most impressed by the layout, condition and presentation.After a couple of early climbs the course levels out in the hills above Glasgow and winds its way across the moors in an attractive, secluded setting. Not a difficult course but an extremely fair one with excellent holes such as the par 5 3rd and the par 3 7th. The downhill finish at 17 and 18 more than make up for the uphill start and overall Ranfurly Castle, like its near neighbours Kilmacolm and East Renfrewshire, affords a most enjoyable golfing experience.
4 / 6
Ranfurly Castle
May 21, 2006


Was this review helpful? Yes / No
0 people found this review helpful
Respond to above review
Everyone has there more obscure favouites, and this is certainly one of mine. The setting is tranquil and scenic, with great views down over Glasgow in the distance. The course is generally quiet, especially midweek, and the fee's are reasonable.The course itself is a shortish 6,284yards, par 70 over rolling moorland. The holes are diverse and interesting with questions being asked of even very good golfers at most holes. Well worth a visit, and its close neighbour Old Ranfurly Castle is also worth a play on the same day.
5 / 6
Ranfurly Castle
September 18, 2005


Was this review helpful? Yes / No
0 people found this review helpful
Respond to above review