Seacroft offers everything else you would expect from a quality links: the odd deep bunker, blind shots, strong breezes, firm bounces, changeable weather (during the wettest April on record) with true putting surfaces and many interesting green complexes. The greens are also surprisingly receptive for a links although the wet weather must have played a part. You might also expect from a links course plentiful sea views and mostly flat land. However, here you’ll find plenty of elevation changes and only the odd glimpse of the sea briefly on the back nine, which includes pleasant vistas of the wind turbines off shore.
The course has few weak holes. The start and finish are both strong while I particularly enjoyed the holes around the turn (8-10) which have great design features. The out of bounds fence and road hard to the right of the 8th should really focus the mind with a drive to a narrowing fairway, as should the approach over the fairway bunker and dune that cuts in from the left. The 9th is similar in aspect, although longer as a par 5, with a green hidden behind a gap in the dune offset diagonally to the line of the fairway. The false front on the 10th – one of many contoured putting surfaces – makes it look intimidating from the raised tee, which is heightened with a flag position tight to the deep bunker on the right. From the 13th onwards the layout builds to a strong finish with one par 3 and 5, with the rest being long or tight par 4s. The green complexes are varied. Holes 2, 3, 4, 10, and 13 are raised, meaning slight adjustments to clubbing are required. Meanwhile 7, 8, and 9 are tucked partially behind dunes demanding some degree of shot shaping to get close.
One criticism of the course is that only the 10th and 12th run across the course with all the other holes pointing towards or away from the clubhouse. Other reviewers have noted a lack of challenge but the club could easily remedy that by growing the rough in from the fairway edges. I imagine they reason that would make the course a chore in high winds for many. However, it is undeniably a quality links with a warm welcome. Well worth the trip.
Date: April 30, 2012