RSNG’s Guide To The Best Places To Play Golf In The UK This Autumn And Winter

Yes it’s cold and yes we’re losing daylight hours, but there’s no need to put the clubs away just yet. The fair weather golfers have gone into hibernation, the fairways are quiet and that fresh air is just what your lungs need – especially if you’ve been stuck in the office all week.

Not only that, but the autumn and winter green fees have kicked in, which means there are a number of cracking deals to be had. So, go and get the clubs back out…

Thurlestone Golf Club, Devon
What a bonus it is for the all-weather golfers of South Devon to have a fast-draining cliff top beauty like Thurlestone to call upon when the cold sets in.

‘We’ve only seen two snowfalls in the last ten years and even frosts are rare in winter,’ says Graeme Fairley, Chairman. ‘The course is open all year round. Even after regular heavy rainfall the course is playable without the need for temporary tees or greens.’

Devon’s beauty may make it a major hit with tourists in the summer months, but it’s still stunning in the winter, and you get the benefit of the crowds staying away. ‘Even in midwinter, with a low sun reflecting on the sea, the views from the course are breath-taking,’ adds Fairley.

Gullane Golf Club, East Lothian
Gullane is a ‘winter haven’ and home to not just one, but three beautiful courses. During the colder months, Gullane benefits from its superb turf and favourable climate, which is a real attraction for winter golf lovers.

‘You get summer golf but in the winter,’ says Stuart Bendoris, Golf Services Manager. ‘The greens are arguably quicker than they are in the summer because of lack of growth.’

‘We are the driest county in Scotland anyway, but when it does rain, it’s playable. We’re always open, so we’re very fortunate. We’re finding more and more overseas golfers playing in October and November and February and March because they know at these times it’s slightly cheaper, but the courses are every bit as good as they are in July and August.’ Gullane’s even has some seasonal offers.

‘You get summer golf but in the winter. The greens are arguably quicker than they are in the summer because of lack of growth’

Farleigh Golf Club, Surrey
Farleigh Golf Club near Croydon is a club that prides itself on keeping the course in excellent condition all year round – no easy task with the changeable and often horrific British weather.

The 27-hole club promotes the ‘Farleigh Guarantee’ of no temporary greens or tees and has built an enviable reputation as a fantastic winter course.

Burnham & Berrow Golf Club, Somerset
One for the ‘must play’ list, Burnham and Berrow has hosted a number of high profile amateur events over the years. A warm welcome is guaranteed at this very special links, one that is laid out in the traditional manner with nine holes out and nine back.

‘Burnham & Berrow’s all year round playability gives our members and guests the perfect venue to enjoy their round,’ says Richard Whyman, Course Manager. ‘Playing through Burnham’s beautiful grass dunes to firm greens must be on the bucket list for any golfer.’

Sherwood Forest Golf Club, Nottinghamshire
Heathland golf doesn’t get much better - and nor do winter golf deals. From November until March, visitors can book a fourball for just £170.00 (compared to £90.00 per person June-September), which includes breakfast. You’ll need that fuel when facing Sherwood’s 98 bunkers.

The West Lancashire Golf Club, Liverpool
Now we’re in the heart of ‘England’s Golf Coast’, home to three Open Championship venues and a number of the country’s finest links courses – including West Lancs, one of the oldest golf clubs in England.

‘With so many links courses within easy reach of the city, Liverpool is a great choice for a winter golfing break,’ says Geoff Harris, England’s Golf Coast Manager.

‘Thanks to their sandy soil, the courses drain well, and play firm and fast, even in the winter months. West Lancs is a Top 100 ranked links and is in fabulous condition year-round.’

Talking of glorious turf, Anfield and Goodison Park are nearby. ‘If football isn’t your thing, then the wide variety of museums, art galleries and Beatles attractions offer up many alternatives,’ adds Harris. There’s horseracing, too, at Aintree and Haydock – although you’re here for the golf, right?

‘With so many links courses within easy reach of the city, Liverpool is a great choice for a winter golfing break’

Prince’s Golf Club, Kent
Twenty-seven holes of golf in an idyllic coastal setting – how does that sound? Sea views are great, but moody winter vistas out across the water are even better.

The whole set-up at Prince’s is mightily impressive. If you’re looking for a winter getaway, this part of the country ticks a lot of boxes, especially with a number of other fantastic tracks nearby.

Hockley Golf Club, Hampshire
Located within the boundaries of the South Downs National Park, Hockley is laid out upon a beautiful chalk downland. Come the winter, it takes some pretty extraordinary downpours to prevent people getting their fix.

Again, there are some good winter deals to be had.

WHAT NEXT?
Need some golfing inspiration? Read about RSNG’s Magnificent 7 Golfing Renegades – the pro golfers who are forging their own, unconventional paths.