Here is our review on the third oldest golf course in Wales, Conwy Golf Club.
Conwy Golf Club Review
The course at Conwy is Wales’ third-oldest golf club behind Tenby and Rhyl and is also one of its very finest, playing over wonderfully natural linksland midway along the northern coast. It takes you right down to the shore at times and serves up a stirring 360 ̊ view – south to the Conwy Mountain and the hills, north to Great Orme and the Irish Sea, east to the Conwy Estuary and west towards Anglesey.
It was originally laid out by Jack Morris, nephew of Old Tom, in 1875. He was then tasked with extending the 12-hole course to a full 18 in 1895.
In the mid-1970s, renowned architect Frank Pennink was drafted in to make major changes to the front nine, while Brian Huggett and Neil Coles redesigned and reconfigured the back nine fairly significantly in the 1980s.
This famous old links has staged many top events over the years, among them Final Qualifying for the Hoylake Open in 2006, the Ryder Cup Wales Seniors Open on three occasions and the 2010 S4C Ladies Championship of Europe on the LET. Next year, the top lady amateurs will take on Conwy when the Curtis Cup visits for the 1st time.
The links wastes no time in making for the shore, with the short par-3 second taking you out in that direction.
The Average Golfer said of the second; “It does not look like a great deal is going on but cambers gather you into bunkers and there are some great swells and run-offs that make up and down very tricky. You’ve got to find that green otherwise it’s going to be a real difficult time making par.”
Next up the short risk-reward 3rd may create an early strategy dilemma, especially downwind off the forward tees. The temptation may be to have a go, but you’ll need to beware of two bunkers set into a bank 40 yards short right of the green, from where birdie aspirations can rapidly turn to bogey reality.
The fifth and its stroke index of 1 comes up on you quickly from there as Sullivan attests. “It’s a par-4 and it is 450-460 yards and it can often play a whole lot longer if that wind is blowing into you. If you walk off with a par you’ve played some incredible golf I can assure you.”
“But for me the its when you stand on this tee that Conwy golf springs into life, it’s the 7th. You’ve got the sea that you can both hear, and also see visually all the way down your left hand side. From the tee shot you’ve got three bunkers waiting for you down the right and plenty of trouble all the way down the left. The second shot you play almost into a little amphitheatre with a green that looks like a basin.”
Two par 3s stand out coming home – the excellent 13th, with its splendid mountain backdrop and steeply tiered green, and the 15th, another delightful, more enclosed par 3, which plays in the same direction to a green very well protected by attractive yet potentially troublesome bunkers.
With the mountain backdrops there is just a hint of Royal County Down here, though the course has fewer serious elevation changes than its Northern Irish counterpart. The layout is more generous over the opening half, though devious pot bunkers abound, before placing a growing premium on accuracy down the stretch, where gorse makes its presence increasingly felt.
Sullivan concludes by saying; “Conwy Golf Club is the perfect destination pretty much all year round for your golf. Throughout the year they charge some realistic green fees and its very accessible for all golfers. It is a real test of golf but as a destination its perfect. No matter the time of year, you will not go away disappointed.
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