Top 10 Golf Courses in Durham 2015
Durham Best In County rankings updated
Situated on England’s northeast coast, County Durham is steeped in history spanning more than a thousand years. Durham City, the county town, is the custodian of Durham Cathedral, which is perhaps the finest Norman building in Europe. The cathedral is not only a UNESCO World Heritage Site, but also the centrepiece of the magnificent Durham City skyline.
The Durham County Golf Union governs men’s golf in the county, while the Durham County Ladies' Golf Association handles the ladies’ golfing requirements. Around forty golf clubs are affiliated to the respective governing bodies. Of these forty or so clubs, one in particular has a long and illustrious history.
The Durham and Yorkshire Golf Club was founded in 1874 and this was the first golf club to be formed in the North East of England. Originally laid out as a 14-hole course, the club changed its name to Seaton Carew in 1887 and a few years later the course was extended to 18 holes. Today’s 22-hole Seaton Carew is not only the elder statesman of northeastern golf, but also the county’s best course and a perennial English Top 100 layout.
There are some that find Seaton Carew’s industrial backdrop rather chilling, but those who have overcome their industrial phobia agree that this is a well designed, genuine links course and also an exacting test of golf. It will come as no surprise therefore to learn that Seaton Carew stays at the head of our Durham Best In County rankings.
Ironically, Seaton Carew is the only course that remains in the same position within our 2015 Durham Top 10. Marc Westenborg of Hawtree Limted designed the bold and modern Rockliffe Hall in 2006 and it moves up to 2nd place, dislodging the old-fashioned parkland layout at Brancepeth Castle, which once contested for an English Top 100 position. It remains to be seen whether or not the course that Harry Colt routed across the old Brancepeth Castle deer park will be a future Top 100 contender.
The 7,000-yard Wellington course at Wynyard Golf Club is Durham’s highest climber, up six places. Host to the Seve Trophy in 2005 (won by the Britain & Ireland team), this 1996 Hawtree design was incredibly well supported in our latest county survey.
We welcome two new entries into our Durham Top 10… South Moor and Castle Eden make their first appearance at the expense of Barnard Castle and Bishop Auckland which narrowly missed the cut.
To see our new 2015 Durham Top 10, click the link. If you have played golf extensively across any English county and would like to have your say, please contact me ([email protected]). In the meanwhile a big thank you to everyone who contributed to our Durham Best In County ranking process.
03 April 2015 Respond to this article