York Golf Club’s original course was located on Knavesmire, close to the city centre, but a decision was made in 1904 to relocate to Lord’s Moor Farm on the edge of Stensall Common, close to the Strensall Camp troop training centre, where military labour is said to have assisted with the construction of a J.H. Taylor-designed layout.
The course comprises a pleasant mix of heathland and parkland terrain, with nicely undulating fairways and lack of artificial features. York offers a fair challenge to all levels of golfer as there are few forced carries and fairway hazards are strategically positioned. Trees have been planted and bunkers re-positioned to tighten up some of the holes.
The club decided in 2012 to appoint Jonathan Gaunt to advise on a long-term development plan. This has involved improvements to the design strategy of every hole, lengthening some with new tees and re-bunkering others. The work has also involved heathland regeneration, woodland management, drainage improvements and enhancement of water features.
Less heralded than it’s near neighbour Fulford, but every bit it’s equal in my opinion. Makes really good use of a completely flat piece of land with many greens raised slightly and pitched at a variety of angles to play. The bunkering is also good, and appears to have been redone at some point recently.
One of a number of second-tier courses in Yorkshire that are well worth seeking out.
This is a gem of a course, located north of York City centre at Strensall. It is designed by Open winner A H TAylor, the 3rd oldest club in Yorkshire and is played out over level land, surrounded by heathland. I have noticed that National Club Golfer have written that they see it as a contender for the next English Top 100 they publish. I’m not sure that it’s that good, with Fulford certainly a step up from York and only just making the Top 100 on our list. It is certainly worthy of it’s ranking in the Yorkshire Top 30.
That said, it is a great course and one which you will enjoy. It has a tough, strong closing stretch which really helps cement the course in your memory.
That together with the lovely par 3’s make this a course you remember. The 2nd hole is the 1st of the par 3’s and you play from out of the course on the common back over the OOB and to the green. It’s early in the round and something different. This repeated on hole 11.
The signature hole is the par 3, 7th where you play over water. Club selection is vital for a hole that seems to play harder than it should.
I highly recommend a round at York Golf Club, play it along with Fulford and make a real overnighter out of a trip to York.
When one thinks of golf in York it is Fulford that normally springs to mind. Most courses are overshadowed by this powerhouse but York Golf Club, known locally as Strensall, shouldn't be.
OK, it's not in the same league as Fulford but would complement it well on a two-course visit to Yorkshire's ancient capital.
The fast running land that York Golf Club is laid out over makes for some enjoyable holes. It's not as demanding as its distinguished neighbour located just a few miles across the City but the par of 70 makes for a true test of golf.
It's a course with few forced carries and hazards placed strategically down the fairways. As one elderly member remarked on my last visit, "You can play here until you are in your nineties."
Indeed the main forced carries come at three of the par 3's. Both the second and 11th require tee-shots from outside the boundary of the course to reach the green, whilst the seventh is played over a large pond.
York boasts a tough finish with a long par five at the 15th enhanced by a devilish green, a blind drive at the 16th, a long par three 17th and a fine finishing hole which has an ominous bunker to either carry or steer to the left of from your drive.
Strensall has got a lot going for it. It's a fair course where good shots are rewarded and if you do stray off line there is usually a chance for recovery.
It's a shame there isn't more of a heathland feel to it as this would enhance the course greatly but regardless this is still one course I always look forward to playing.
Ed is the founder of Golf Empire – click the link to read his full review.