Silloth on Solway - Cumbria - England

Silloth on Solway Golf Club,
The Club House,
Station Road,
Silloth,
Cumbria,
CA7 4AE,
England


  • +44 (0) 16973 31304

At last, Silloth on Solway Golf Club’s reputation is becoming recognised more widely, thoroughly deserving its position in the Top 100 and one of England's best links courses.

Founded in 1892, with the help of Railway Company money, the course was originally designed by North Berwick professional David Grant. Willie Park Junior subsequently carried out some modifications to the layout between 1898 and 1902, primarily to remove a few blind shots and introduce new holes at the 4th and 5th. Alister MacKenzie submitted plans in 1915 to make further changes, but financial constraints after the Great War meant the club could only afford to proceed with installing a new green on the 3rd and a new tee on the 4th.

Silloth is famous for its affiliation with ladies' golf. The famous Leitch sisters learnt to play on the Silloth links. Charlotte Cecilia Pitcairn Leitch (or Cecil as she became known), went on to be the best lady golfer in the world, winning a record four British, five French, two English and one Canadian titles. In 1910, Cecil played a match against Harold Hilton (one of the greatest male golfers of the time) over 72 holes, 36 at Walton Heath and 36 at Sunningdale. Sportingly, Hilton gave Cecil nine shots per 18 holes and found himself five holes up in the last round, with only the last 15 holes to play. Cecil, showing true grit, fought her way back and ended up winning on the 71st green 2 up and 1 to play.

Silloth has parliamentary connections too. Viscount Willie Whitelaw was the President of Silloth on Solway Golf Club until his death in 1999.

You have to make an extra special effort to get to Silloth because it is located in one of the most remote and isolated places in England, at the mouth of the Solway Firth. When you get to Silloth, it’s a surprise to see the nearby industry that slightly blots an otherwise perfect landscape.

With heather and gorse adding brilliant splashes of seasonal colour, this is a cracking links golf course. When the wind blows, it’s unlikely that you will play to your handicap. Even on a calm day, you’ll find it tough. "It is also the home of the winds," wrote Darwin, "when I was there the wind did not blow really hard, but hard enough to make a fool of me." Finding the tight greens is no mean feat and when you do, they are tough to read with their subtle borrows.

It’s well worth the time (and the money) to get to Silloth and once you get there, you won’t want to leave. You are at one of the best value golf courses in the whole of the British Isles.

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Reviews for Silloth on Solway

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Description: It’s well worth the time (and the money) to get to Silloth on Solway Golf Club and once you get here, you won’t want to leave... Rating: 8.5 out of 10 Reviews: 60
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Martin Jordan
Silloth had been on the MPPJ radar for ages however, the recent bad weather made me question if this was the right time to make the 5 hour round trip to play here as winter golfing happiness could have been easily achieved a lot closer to home, and this was one course that I wanted to play with its best drawers on. But I, like many, have been champing at the golfing bit recently and that coupled with further reassurance from the Silloth Pro Shop, and the indispensible BBC 5 day forecast, (always check the flythrough) we decided to make the cross border raid.

I have to confess that pre-round research of Silloth through websites, books and photos made the place look a bit austere. I am very happy to report that although tough, it is a very fair and aesthetically stunning outpost, a sublime course of dells, gorse, challenging drives and pulpit greens, it is wonderful. I have mentioned the carries from the tees, some quite considerable, and many into a prevailing wind so, if you are struggling off the tee, this may not be the place for you. In fact, if I had visited last year when I couldn’t have driven Miss Daisy never mind a golf ball, it may have been too much for me. However, the Big Dog was in a benevolent mood so I shouldn’t have been such a big girl’s blouse.

Favourite holes? That is tough as I don’t think that there is a weak hole but holes 4,9,12 and 15 are a wee cut above. I must also mention the fantastic treatment from the catering staff, who couldn’t have done any more for us and further thanks to the ordinary members we encountered during our round and afterwards in the clubhouse who were as friendly as I have ever experienced on an away day. So if you fancy a day by the sea with an abundance of quality holes Silloth is the very place for you. It will challenge and delight in equal measure and you will not regret, for one solitary second, the time it took to get there. If I may I would like to leave the last word to the masterly Bernard Darwin who summed up Silloth far better than I ever could “Never in my life have I seen a more ideal piece of golfing country. There is everything that a golfers heart can desire”. MPPJ
February 04, 2011
8 / 10
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BangYan
October 12, 2011
I think the 3rd at Silloth is one of best holes ive ever played and you dont mention it. Thats sums Silloth up for me. A great course
Ian
I played the course yesterday - 12-10-2010. The quality of the course was very poor. I can appreciate the green keepers preparing the course for the winter. However to charge full rate whilst the tees, some greens had been hollow-tined and covered in sand, and the fairways scored was unfair. The fairways hadn’t been cut or rolled for some time. Although the greens were in general pretty good. The layout of the course was good, albeit the par fives are not long enough. The fairways are too generous and should be narrowed and a couple more bunkers would make the course a stiffer test. When I played there was little wind and shot a 3 over 75 - and felt I left a lot of shot out there. The par 3’s are good. The front 9 is better than the back and would suggest making at least one of the 3 par 5’s on the back a par 4. The course doesn’t deserve to be as highly rated as it is in my opinion.
October 13, 2010
6 / 10
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shab
October 17, 2010
Can't quite fathom this review. You must have caught the course on a bad day. Silloth is my favourite course that i've played and a regular fixture whenever I am up in the lakes. Class through and through. Also if you think the course is easy you must be the best golfer i've ever seen!
andy tibbs
Well well, played all the top links and this is well up there, only RCD is different class. Anybody over 18 handicap though dont bother, it will eat you. Great design, nice welcome and as for the green fee, nowhere is better value.
July 12, 2010
10 / 10
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David Wilkinson
Having grown up playing golf around nearby Carlisle, I shockingly had never experienced Silloth until last August, at the age of 24. The first thing that hits you about the club is the understated clubhouse and very friendly welcome. Members at Silloth are very proud of their club and feel like they have hit the jackpot, with membership to an incredible club for a fraction of the cost of other great links tracks. There are great tales to be heard of the club denying Walter Hagen an exhibition match, the exploits of former Captain, Willie Whitehall and the familiar quotes of Bernard Darwin, which are part and parcel of most top clubs in Britain.The course itself is tough. Accuracy off the tee is rewarded but stray approach shots often end in classic pot bunkers or dramatic hollows, like those that flank both sides of the tricky 4th green. The greens run fast and true and I believe the area drains very quickly, so you're unlikely to find it soggy under foot. Where the course turns, the hand of Alistair Mackenzie is especially evident, with false fronts and cleverly disguised bunkers.I cannot stress how impressive this course is. It will rightfully host the English Amateur Championship in 2012 and has been reinstated as a qualifying course for the Open Championship. Many trusted golf writers claim it is a better course that several current 'Open' venues. Without the local infrastructure, it will never host that tournament. So use the opportunity to experience championship-quality links golf with tiny green fees!
May 23, 2010
10 / 10
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Robert Allen
I played this fantastic course at the end of 2008. I went as part of a group of 16 and must say the club made us feel most welcome by greeting us with a full breakfast! it was all part of the deal which totalled £50, and i was lucky enough to play twice. Course itself is very difficult but also has the odd chance of birdies, like the short par 5 on the back 9. i play off 9 handicap and shot 79 which i was very happy with, but it may have been 69 on my home course which is by far easier! The front holes aim directly out to sea which makes getting off to a good start difficult so you must warm up or your round is over before you even start! for example the first is 380yards, i hit a great drive followed by a great 3 iron and was on the fringe. i would normally hit those 500yards!!! do not underclub!!
January 08, 2010
8 / 10
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Dr Shahab Hussain
Gave this call a 5 ball on my last review. Have since played it again with my now fiance. Not a chance this course is a five ball. Six baller all the way. Playing it again was a diferent experience completely. This is definately a course where you NEED to know your way around. Certain parts of the course are just not worth a visit. I've never played a course where every hole is completely unique and challenges every golfing instinct you have. I have actually had pleasant dreams about some of the holes and scenery on this course. Only downside is the industry and Cumbrian weather. This ain't gonna change tho. Get your Galvin's on and make a weekend of it here. A course every golfer in the North of England should make an effort to play.
December 14, 2009
10 / 10
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Paul
If there is a better links course, it is marginal. Played Troon and Turnberry, Hoylake and West Lancs in space of two weeks. Hard to decide if this is best of the 5, between here and west lancs. Factor in the price, £40 for a day, cannot be beaten. The course was superb, true links, lovely condition and stunning views. Brilliant, brilliant, brilliant.
September 26, 2009
10 / 10
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Dr Shahab Hussain
Played this course the day after my birthday as a gift from my girlfriend (who walked around with me, and hit a few cheeky shots when there were no members in sight!!!). Made the shortish trip from Keswick and was a very pleasant drive. Lovely sunny spells, but to give you an idea of how strong the wind was, i stood my trolley bag up outside the car as i got my shoes on and the wind blew it over!! First four or five holes are as tough driving holes as i've ever played, but was delighted to hit low and straight screamers at all of them. Really enjoyed the round once i realised that my handicap meant not a thing at this course. Par three's were the most memorable holes for me, with the 12th a gem. I still have alot to learn about links golf as i hit the five iron of my life at the 12th. Pitched virtually on the hole, but ran off the back of a hard green. This is a course where you may not be immediately blown away by the beauty, but you remember lovely things about the course as you reminisce the round. On one hole you literaly have to climb out of the green it's so secluded. Members v. friendly and Mr Todd regaled us with tales of Cecil Leitch (who he claimed hit it like a man), and the railroad company. Only one gripe- found the proshop workers very unfriendly and unwelcoming (considering the effort to get there), perhaps the knew-found fame of the course is getting to their heads. Will return one day i hope. Shab, Moor Allerton GC Leeds. Handicap 12 Claim to fame- parred first 3 holes into the teeth of the wind. Sadly round deteriorated after that!
September 24, 2009
8 / 10
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Dan Hare
I have played here a couple of times and really enjoyed it on both occasions.Very tough opening holes with sandy waste off the fairways true hazards, made me wonder if I had enough balls in the bag !The hogsback uphill par 5 is super tough.Would love to play this traditional, quirky links again - it's not manicured to death, overmarked or sanitised, and all the more fun for it.Definitely worth the visit if you make the difficult trip, and found the members and staff extremely helpful and friendly. dan
July 23, 2009
8 / 10
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Andy Vernon
Played 4 courses over a weekend.. St Andrews Old, New, Jubilee and Silloth.The best by a distance was Silloth!!! what a fantastic course... Only negative comment, were not told every tee would be on a mat! can understand par 3s but not every hole...
February 24, 2009
8 / 10
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