In 1991, Edward T. Fox purchased the 120-acre property that’s now occupied by the 18-hole layout at Sand Martins Golf Club, designing the course that’s in play today. The golf facility was almost sold to developers in 2005 but members and management were successful with a rival bid to take control of the business and ensure it remained as a thriving golf venture.
The front nine to the north of the clubhouse is parkland in style, with several water features in play, while the back nine to the south is more of an inland links, featuring a number of revetted bunkers on these holes. All the greens were built to USGA specifications so they’re an absolute pleasure to putt on.
Sand Martins extends to 5,763 metres from the back tees, playing to a par of 70. Highlight holes include the short par 2nd (with water protecting the green), the right doglegged 3rd (which is the only par five on the front nine), and the trio of par threes on the back nine at the 12th, 14th and 17th – they’re all wonderful little holes that are set up to fully examine short iron play off the tee.
What a lovely course. I arrived in the evening hoping to make 18 before the sun went down which I just managed to do. A really friendly club, several members spoke to me on the way round, most apologising that I was playing just after the greens had been treated. I didn't feel it effected play at all but I was really impressed at how proud they all were of the course and they we justified in being so in my opinion. The front 9 is a real contrast to the back which is much like an inland links. The first 9 is a typical parkland with really nice water features. Definitely a course worth seeking out if you are in area.
Sand Martins is nice, but the front nine doesn't help it. The front nine gets repetitive and boring, while the back has far more land movement and is often described as "linksy". I wouldn't go this far, but there are mounds between holes, and it makes for a far nicer 9 holes than the front.