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Aldeburgh: Boasting traditional golf with a rich history

Aldeburgh: Boasting traditional golf with a rich history

Why we’d rather be playing this one-of-a-kind course in Suffolk

 

As a venue, Aldeburgh Golf Club is the kind of place where they do things their own way. You can only play in twoballs so our suggestion is to adopt the ‘when in Rome’ maxim. Foursomes is brilliant fun, especially round a testing heathland course like this one.

If you play Aldeburgh between May and late June, you will be presented with beautiful narrow fairways weaving their way between bright yellow gorse. You will be hard-pressed to find such an awe-inspiring sight at any golf course.

The testing long 4s are quite something, with perhaps the pick of the bunch the 11th with its positively links-like fairway rippling into the distance. Until you reach your ball, you can never be quite sure where your shot has finished, especially in the dusty summer months.

Currently, Mackenzie & Ebert (Martin Ebert) are assisting Aldeburgh with a major course review – this is being considered by the club’s members in March with a view to implementing the work over the next two years if supported.

History

Aldeburgh enjoys a rich history. Its heathland layout was shaped by no fewer than three Open champions:

Willie Fernie – winner of the Claret Jug in 1893 – was the man to shape the original course, with changes made by two-time Open champion Willie Park Jnr and JH Taylor, a five-time winner of the tournament.

Just outside the pretty seaside town of the same name on the Suffolk coast, Aldeburgh Golf Club lies half an hour from Ipswich and dates back to 1880. Only nearby Felixstowe Ferry in this part of the world is older.

The famous duo of Harry Colt and Hugh Alison, in the 1920s, also had an input, creating Aldeburgh’s famously demanding closing stretch. The course is heathland in nature and almost unrelentingly testing with a collection of demanding par 4s its calling card.

Aldeburgh has played host to many a championship throughout its long and storied history. Just since the turn of the 21st Century, the club has hosted the English Ladies Championship, English County Championship and the English Senior Amateur Championship.

What makes Aldeburgh Golf Club special?

This is what you would call traditional golf. Aldeburgh allows no fourballs, positively encourages foursomes, has no par 5s and possesses fast-running fairways lined by sleepered bunkers and banks of gorse.

Unless your long iron play is of the highest quality, you must embrace dropping the odd shot at Aldeburgh because it will happen. And once they are gone they really do take some earning back. There are no par 5s, no driveable par 4s and only one of the short holes is an obvious chance of a two.

Where does it rank?

95th in GB&I, 33rd in England, 1st in Suffolk

Where is it?

Aldeburgh Golf Club is located on the south-east coast of England and a 40 minute drive from Ipswich.

Get in touch with Aldeburgh Golf Club

For more information about the club and course, visit their website or call them on 01728 452890.

You can play Aldeburgh on the NCG Top 100s Tour this year!

  • Register now to play in our 2024 Aldeburgh event on April 17th here.

Now have your say

Have you ever had the pleasure of playing at Aldeburgh? Let us know your thoughts with a post on X, formerly Twitter!

Matt Coles

Matt Coles

Mention a European country, and Matt will tell you which resorts make the National Club Golfer Top 100s: European Resorts list. He might even throw in who designed the golf course and how many rooms the hotel has got at each one…

Matt got into the game of golf from a young age, following his old man to the local golf club. He fell for the sport, and now can’t seem to go a day without thinking about how to improve his game (Thanks Dad!). Matt has been a member of Howley Hall GC in Leeds since 2020, and is just about managing to maintain a single-figure handicap. He likes to remind people that he once broke 75, but won’t tell people that it was on a shortened course during the winter.

He moved to Leeds after graduating from the University of Central Lancashire with a First Class Honours degree in Sports Journalism. Matt joined NCG after almost five years travelling the world with the Professional Squash Association, working on events in all four corners of the globe.

Matt currently plays a Cobra King LTDx driver and RadSpeed 3-wood. TaylorMade monopolise the rest of his bag, with a SIM UDI, M5 irons and both Milled Grind and HI-TOE wedges, along with a Monza Redline putter. He uses a Vice Pro Plus golf ball, because he’s a bit different…

Away from golf, Matt is a Manchester United fan, and a keen runner, having ran the Rob Burrow Leeds Marathon (his first and possibly last), in May 2023.

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