What we say
Hayling Golf Club is a superb links and, in spells, one of the best golf courses in the south of England.
As you trundle expectedly down the beach road towards Hayling Golf Club, you do so knowing the only thing at the end of it is a links of high calibre.
Founded in 1883, it is the only complete links between Rye and Cornwall and we rate it highly enough for it to rise to the cusp of the top 50 in our English Top 100, move to the verge our GB&I list and get it well inside the cut-off in our GB&I Links ranking.
The clubhouse is irrelevant to those rankings but is distinctive and enjoyable nonetheless, a Poirot-esque art deco affair with echoes of Birkdale.
There are views from it across the Solent to the Isle of Wight, both nice accompaniments to the main attraction; a collection of holes that stand comparison with any in the land.
The turf here is superb, the greens quick enough and true, heather is starting to take root following gorse clearance (some still frames some holes) that also aids playability at this predictably blustery venue.
After an unusual par 3 start, a dog-leg 2nd round bunkers clustered in the shape of an ace of clubs, the 3rd and 4th then play back and forth in opposite directions and therefore in reverse difficulty depending on the wind.
Then comes one of Hayling's highlights, a cute cross-site par 3 to a memorable green; just 12 yards wide and 32 yards long, there is a bunker front left with a hollow right, and Dornoch-like run-off areas to the back and a sloped apron at the front. Miss the green a par save will be hard to achieve but enormous fun in trying to do so.
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It begins arguably the best stretch here, the 434-yard 6th a strong stroke one with the approach played over wide stream and followed by a terrific par 5 that twists and turns over a corrugated iron fairway that continues into a green, with two tiers accentuated by a scoop out of the right side.
If it is miserable weather, you can take cover in the World War II shelter on the left of the fairway for some respite.
Turning round, the 8th is a brilliant short par 4 that plays over two dune ridges to a partially blind flag with a marker post in distance. The drive off the next is even more blind on this great-looking hole resplendent with heather that plays towards the beach and slightly changes the course's character with bigger dunes behind the green.
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The sporty two-shot 10th - from an elevated tee to a green site bursting with character - maintains the tempo, and the refurbished short 11th towards the harbour does too.
Another change of the many changes if direction here sees the 12th plays into an amphitheatre green like a mini Trump Aberdeen or Hillside. It contends with the 6th for Hayling's toughest.
Coming home might not have the relentless quality but the 15th, an intimidating drive over a gorge filled with gorse to a two-tier fairway with a ridge running down the middle and its green draped over the fold in the terrain, is superb.
- Costs -
- TG Rating
- Players Rating
- Address Links Lane, , HAYLING ISLAND
- Tel 02392 464446
- Website www.haylinggolf.co.uk
|Course Length||6,531 yards (5,972 metres)|
- Course has: Bar
- Course does not have: Buggy Hire
- Course has: Driving Range
- Course does not have: Practice Green
- Course has: Pro Shop
- Course has: Restaurant
- Course has: Trolley Hire
- Course has: Dress Code
- Course has: Club Hire
- Course does not have: Handicap