Saunton Golf Club

88%
Rating

About the Club

Saunton (East Course)

Two hard, fast-running classic links courses usually presented in excellent condition, in the middle of a popular holiday destination – what more could you possibly want?

It is difficult to think of too many (if any) locations that can offer quite such a tempting prospect, with the exception of St Andrews or Troon. Whenever you consider the UK’s best golf courses, the names in a select group of architects crops up time and time again for the simple reason that they were the best at what they did, and the legacy they left is nigh impossible to surpass.

So it will be no surprise to learn that both courses at Saunton were originally laid out or greatly modified by Herbert Fowler, although there have been subsequent alterations to keep pace with improvements in equipment.

And if you want an indication of the challenge, the East Course starts with a 470 yard par four, and although the West is a shorter layout it is, if anything, even trickier to score well there, demanding accurate placement on almost every shot.

45th Best UK Golf Course 


 

Founded in 1897, Herbert Fowler redesigned the original course at Saunton Golf Club in 1919 and the fact that there have been relatively few subsequent changes to what is now the East Course, bears testament to its inherent quality. Saunton boasts two traditional 18-hole links courses - the East Course, which is regarded as the principal championship venue; and the West Course, which many regard to be an equally fine test. Both courses run through the majestic dunes of Braunton Burrows, a nature lover's haven, where over 300 species of wild flowers have been identified.

Though rated as Saunton's second course, there is much to enjoy on the West Course, which was originally built in the 1930's but was lost during the Second World War when it was used as an army training ground. The course was rebuilt in 1975 and is now a superb links test, similar in quality to the East Course, with a character all of its own. As for the East Course at Saunton, well, if it were ever decided to increase the number of courses on the Open Championship rota, then the East Course would certainly be an obvious candidate. As it is, the course is as natural a links as you would be likely to find and has hosted many prestigious amateur events.

Right from the first tee, your experience on the East Course is inspirational. The opening hole, playing from an elevated tee to a valley-like fairway and measuring some 478 yards from the championship stakes, is a truly superb hole and requires two fine strokes to find the target. Other holes of note on the front nine include the par four, 3rd, where the green has an uncanny knack of dismissing all but the most perfect of shots; and the short 5th, which though measuring just over 120 yards, can cause considerable anguish, with its dramatically sloping green.

And though the homeward trip is a little shorter, it provides no less a test. From the notoriously hard-to-hit par three, 13th hole, the finish is tough to say the least. The immense par four, 14th, measures 455 yards from the back stakes and requires something special to achieve par, while the tee shot on the par five, 15th, is over the dunes to an angled fairway. It's probably the 434-yard 16th, however, that is the most spoken about hole on the East Course at Saunton. Boasting a fairway, which curves to the left and skirts the sides of the dunes, an array of ridges and a bunker complicates the approach to the green.

Directions

Eight miles west of Barnstaple
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Latest Player Rounds

Ed's image
The East Course
SCORE: 104 SP: 32

Courses & Scorecards

The East Course

The strength of this course lies in the long par 4 holes which usually require a driver from the tee. The wind plays an important part in the decision-making process and the prevailing wind is from Hartland Point in the south west.

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74/74
PAR
74
SSS
6427
YARDS
Hole
Par
Par 2
SI
Yds
1
4
4
11
390
2
5
5
5
462
3
4
4
3
359
4
5
5
9
433
5
3
3
17
104
6
4
4
15
299
7
4
4
1
381
8
4
4
13
312
9
4
4
7
370
Hole
Par
Par 2
SI
Yds
10
4
4
6
296
11
4
4
10
316
12
5
5
14
386
13
3
3
16
120
14
5
5
4
412
15
5
5
8
435
16
4
4
2
370
17
3
3
18
166
18
4
4
12
350

Reviews by players

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Club facilities

Club HouseHas a Club House
Club Hire offers Club Hire
Putting GreenHas a Putting Green
Pro ShopHas a Pro Shop
Practice AreaHas a Practice Area
Club BarHas a Club Bar
Driving RangeHas a Driving Range
RestaurantHas a Restaurant
Trolley Hire offers Trolley Hire
Changing has Changing Rooms
Buggy Hire offers Buggy Hire
Lessons can provide Lessons

Green fees

Weekday Round inc Sundays

£77.00 (Jnr £38.50)

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Weekend Round Saturday

£79.00 (Jnr £39.50)

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Membership

Sorry, this club has not added their Membership prices.

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