Top 100 Links Courses of Britain and Ireland 2020
Some of our regular readers may remember a Links news item published during the dark winter days from three years ago which generated quite a bit of feedback. Entitled Top 100 Links Courses of Britain and Ireland 2017, it featured what we considered to be the best one hundred links layouts around the shores of the British Isles.
We’ve now decided to revive the GB&I Links List and have taken it a stage further by creating a Top 100 that will be updated biennially, along with all the other listings that we revise on an ongoing basis. The latest list appears below but if you wish to see the complete chart details of the Top 100 Links Courses of Britain and Ireland then click the link.
When comparing the current standings to those of January 2017, it must be remembered that there have been two editions of national and GB&I updates published since 2017 so the chart movements indicated below reflect two ranking revisions.
Only three courses move upwards within the Top 20 and, although they’re only small improvements, things are so tight at the top that even the slightest change is actually seen as quite significant. The Dunluce at Royal Portrush (#4) and the West links at North Berwick (#12) both rise two places to their current positions, while the Balgownie at Royal Aberdeen eases up one spot to No.15.
North Berwick Golf Club
Looking at the remaining positions in the top half of the table, half a dozen 18-hole layouts make reasonable headway.
In England, both the century-old layouts at St Enodoc (Church) in Cornwall (up seven to #21) and Royal Cinque Ports in Kent (up six to #23) have lately found favour with our raters, along with the two modern Irish links at Trump International Ireland in County Clare (up thirteen to #28) and Sandy Hills at Rosapenna in Donegal (up six to #38). The Scottish courses at Gullane No. 1 in East Lothian (up five to #44), host venue for a couple of recent national Opens, and the newly renovated Machrie on Islay (up eight to #45), also progress in the right direction.
Royal Cinque Ports Golf Club
In the bottom half of the standings, there are a handful of top tracks which make double-digit advances.
The Old course at Moray in Lossiemouth (up thirteen to #58) and the Shore and Dunes nines at Prince’s in Sandwich (up eleven to #64) also now occupy positions in our mainstream GB&I Top 100 and they’re followed by the biggest climber on our links listings, the James Braid-designed Perranporth in Cornwall, which hurtles nineteen places up to No. 73. Two Scottish links with Braid connections make their mark a little further down the list, with Murcar Links in Aberdeenshire racing ten spots up to No. 80 and Panmure in Angus streaking thirteen rungs up the ladder to No. 86.
Perranporth Golf Club
Five courses have been added to our Links Top 100.
The first of these is Elie in Fife (new at #85), which is an Old Tom Morris design, with Martin Ebert’s newly renovated King Robert the Bruce (formerly the Kintyre) course at Trump Turnberry (new at #90) also making the cut. The Corbie Hill course at Fraserburgh then concludes the contingent of Scottish newcomers at No. 91.
The Golf House Club, Elie
Tenby Golf Club
For those who might wonder which courses dropped out, four came from the northern side of Hadrian’s Wall: Archerfield (Direlton), Leven Links, Luffness New and Montrose (Medal), along with Royal Jersey from the Channel Islands. Courses that just missed out on a Top 100 berth this time include St Andrews (Jubilee), Rosapenna (Old Tom Morris) and West Cornwall.
|1||Royal County Down (Championship)||No change|
|2||Trump Turnberry (Ailsa)||No change|
|3||St Andrews (Old)||No change|
|4||Royal Portrush (Dunluce)||Up 2|
|5||Royal Dornoch (Championship)||Down 1|
|7||Ballybunion (Old)||No change|
|8||Royal St George's||No change|
|9||Carnoustie (Championship)||No change|
|10||Lahinch (Old)||No change|
|11||Royal Birkdale||No change|
|12||North Berwick (West)||Up 2|
|14||Portmarnock (Championship)||Down 1|
|15||Royal Aberdeen (Balgownie)||Up 1|
|16||Castle Stuart||Down 1|
|17||Royal Lytham & St Annes||No change|
|18||Trump International - Scotland||No change|
|19||Royal Porthcawl||No change|
|20||Cruden Bay (Championship)||No change|
|21||St Enodoc (Church)||Up 7|
|22||European Club||Up 1|
|23||Royal Cinque Ports||Up 6|
|24||Royal Troon (Old)||Down 3|
|26||Western Gailes||Up 1|
|28||Trump International - Ireland||Up 13|
|29||Royal Liverpool||Down 5|
|30||Royal West Norfolk||Up 3|
|31||Machrihanish (Championship)||Down 1|
|34||Saunton (East)||Down 9|
|35||County Sligo (Championship)||Up 4|
|36||The Island||No change|
|38||Rosapenna (Sandy Hills)||Up 6|
|40||Rye (Old)||Up 2|
|41||Nairn (Championship)||Down 10|
|42||County Louth||Down 5|
|43||Carne (Hackett)||No change|
|44||Gullane (No.1)||Up 5|
|46||Renaissance Club||Down 1|
|47||Enniscrone (Dunes)||No change|
|49||Burnham & Berrow (Championship)||Down 11|
|53||Portstewart (Strand)||Up 5|
|54||Machrihanish Dunes||Up 1|
|55||Skibo Castle||Down 3|
|56||St Andrews (New)||No change|
|57||Royal St David's||Down 7|
|58||Moray (Old)||Up 13|
|61||Southport & Ainsdale||Down 1|
|62||West Lancashire||Up 2|
|64||Prince's (Shore & Dunes)||Up 11|
|65||Ballyliffin (Old)||Down 4|
|66||Castlerock (Mussenden)||Down 1|
|68||La Moye||Down 2|
|69||Portmarnock Hotel Links||Down 2|
|70||Royal North Devon||Down 1|
|71||Saunton (West)||Down 1|
|75||Archerfield (Fidra)||Up 2|
|76||Connemara (Championship)||Up 7|
|78||Royal Dublin||Up 9|
|79||Ballybunion (Cashen)||Down 5|
|83||Royal Portrush (Valley)||Down 11|
|87||Trevose (Championship)||Down 8|
|89||Narin & Portnoo||No change|
|90||Trump Turnberry (King Robert the Bruce)||New entry|
|91||Fraserburgh (Corbie Hill)||New entry|
|92||Littlestone (Championship)||Up 2|
|93||Gullane (No.2)||Up 2|
|94||Seaton Carew (Old)||Down 3|
|96||Glasgow (Gailes Links)||Down 12|
To see the complete detailed list of the Top 100 Links Courses of Britain and Ireland click the link.
Top 100 Golf Courses