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Alwoodley golf course review

Golf courses designed by Alister MacKenzie

We all know him for designing Augusta National, but what other golf courses were from the great mind of Alister MacKenzie?

 

Have you ever played a golf course that was designed by Alister MacKenzie?

Alister MacKenzie is, without doubt, one of the world’s most famous golf course designers. As well as plenty of courses in the United Kingdom, MacKenzie designed layouts all over the world.

You can find his work in Argentina and Uruguay in South America, along with courses in Australia and New Zealand. The Englishman also designed a number of courses in the United States, including a couple of very special and famous tracks.

He is most famous for designing the great Augusta National, which plays host to the Masters Tournament every April.

However, his first golf course design was much closer to home. He was the man responsible for the Alwoodley, in Leeds, the city of his birth. It opened in 1907, and he was one of the club’s founding members.

Best golf holes in Yorkshire

Who is Alister MacKenzie?

MacKenzie was born in 1870 in Normanton, Yorkshire. He trained as a medical doctor, and practised medicine.

He was a surgeon with the British Army during the Second Boer War. Following the First World War, he began focussing more on golf course design.

By then, he had already had a hand in several golf courses, including the original design of Alwoodley, his first layout, and one which stands relatively untouched to this day.

In the 1920s, he went across to the United States, and that was where some of his best work came about, including the design and layout of the world-famous Augusta National.

MacKenzie died a couple of months prior to the inaugural Masters Tournament in 1934, but his memory and his work live on.

Golf courses designed by Alister MacKenzie

We have arranged the courses that McKenzie designed into sections – first by country and then alphabetically.

England

Alwoodley, West Yorkshire
Not only was Alwoodley the first golf course that MacKenzie designed, but he also became a founder member of the club when it opened in 1907. More than 115 years on, and the layout remains relatively unchanged, with Alwoodley hosting Regional Qualifying for the Open Championship, along with the Brabazon Trophy and the Women’s Amateur Championship in its long and storied history.

  • Check out Alwoodley’s page on the NCG Top 100s site here
  • Visit the Alwoodley Golf Club website here

Bingley St Ives, West Yorkshire

Bolton Old Links, Lancashire

Bramall Park, Manchester

Burnham & Berrow, Somerset
Originally founded in 1890, MacKenzie visited this Somerset links three decades later. He was consulted over course alterations, with the 9th green being among those changes MacKenzie suggested making. The Championship Course at Burnham & Berrow has hosted several major amateur tournaments including the Brabazon Trophy.

  • Check out Burnham & Berrow’s page on the NCG Top 100s site here
  • Visit the Burnham & Berrow Golf Club website here

Bury, Manchester

Cavendish, Derbyshire

Cleckheaton, West Yorkshire

Cleeve Hill, Gloucestershire

Crosland Heath, West Yorkshire

Crowborough Beacon, Sussex

Darlington, Durham

Dewsbury, West Yorkshire

Doncaster, West Yorkshire

Dore & Totley, South Yorkshire

Faversham, Kent

Felixstowe Ferry, Suffolk

Fulwell, Middlesex

Garforth, West Yorkshire

Grange-Over-Sands, Cumbria

Hadley Wood, London

Hadley Wood

Halifax, West Yorkshire

Harrogate, West Yorkshire

Hazel Grove, Manchester

Headingley, West Yorkshire

Hornsea, East Yorkshire

Horsforth, West Yorkshire

Ilkley, West Yorkshire

Leeds, West Yorkshire

Lilley Brook, Gloucestershire

Lindrick, South Yorkshire

Littlestone, Kent

Low Laithes, West Yorkshire

Moortown, West Yorkshire
Following Alwoodley, Dr Alister McKenzie’s next design would be Moortown. The club opened in 1909, and became the first British venue to host the Ryder Cup two decades later. Moortown has also played host to the European Tour on four occasions, as well as both the English Amateur and Brabazon Trophy.

  • Check out Moortown’s page on the NCG Top 100s site here
  • Visit the Moortown Golf Club website here

Morecambe, Lancashire

Nelson, Lancashire

Oakdale, West Yorkshire

Pannal, North Yorkshire

Pontefract, West Yorkshire

Ravensworth, Newcastle

Reddish Vale, Manchester

Sand Moor, West Yorkshire

Scarborough, East Yorkshire

Seaton Carew, Teesside

National Club Golfer and National Club Golfer magazine

Shipley, West Yorkshire

Sitwell Park, South Yorkshire

Skipton, West Yorkshire

South Moor, Durham

South Shields, Newcastle

Stanley Park, Blackpool

Stanmore, Middlesex

Sutton Coldfield, Birmingham

Teignmouth, Cornwall

Temple Newsam, West Yorkshire

Walsall, West Midlands

West Herts, Hertfordshire

Weston-Super-Mare, Somerset

Willingdon, Bournemouth

Worcester, Worcestershire

The Worcestershire, Worcestershire

Ireland

Cork, Co. Cork

Douglas, Co. Cork
MacKenzie’s first work in Ireland came at Douglas Golf Club. The original layout (1909) from Harry Colt was modified and extended in 1924 by MacKenzie. He made changes around the greens, with the Irish Field saying his work “bears at every turn the impress of his golfing genius.

  • Visit the Douglas Golf Club website here

Galway, Co. Galway

Lahinch (Old Course), Co. Clare

Limerick, Co. Limerick

Muskerry, Co. Cork

Nenagh, Co. Tipperary

Scotland

Blairgowrie (Rosemount Course), Perthshire

Bonnyton, Glasgow

Bruntsfield Links, Edinburgh

Duff House Royal, Moray

Duff House Royal Golf Club

Erskine, Renfrewshire

Hazlehead (MacKenzie Course), Aberdeen

Pitreavie, Dunfermline

Pollok, Glasgow

Royal Troon (Portland Course), Troon
The Portland Course at Royal Troon was MacKenzie’s first design north of the border. The Portland is the second of the two courses at Royal Troon, with the Old Course hosting the Open Championship on several occasions. The course had originally been designed by Willie Fernie, with MacKenzie then making changes to it in the early 1920s.

  • Check out the Portland Course’s page on the NCG Top 100s site here
  • Visit the Royal Troon Golf Club website here

Wales

Rhayader (now Powys)

Isle of Man

Castletown, Langness

Douglas, Pulrose

Argentina

Jockey Club, Argentina

Libertad, Argentina

Australia

Brisbane, Queensland

The Flinders, Victoria

New South Wales, NSW

Royal Adelaide, South Australia

Royal Melbourne (West Course), Victoria
After arriving in Melbourne in 1926, MacKenzie quickly set to work on designing the West Course at Royal Melbourne. It is, perhaps, his best known in the region, with parts of the layout (as a composite course with some holes from the East) playing host to the Presidents Cup on three occasions.

  • Visit the Royal Melbourne Golf Club website here

Canada

St Charles, Winnipeg

New Zealand

Titirangi, Auckland

United States

Augusta National, Georgia
Without doubt, the most famous of all the Alister MacKenzie designs, Augusta National continues to delight golf fans and players alike every April! Unfortunately, MacKenzie would pass two months before the inaugural Masters Tournament in 1934, but the tournament continues to this day, as the only major championship that remains at one venue year after year.

  • Learn more about Augusta National on the Masters website here
Masters 12th hole

Burning Tree, Maryland

Canoe Brook (South Course), New Jersey
After making the move Stateside, MacKenzie’s first work in golf course design came at Canoe Brook in New Jersey. The South Course was the second design at Canoe Brook, opening 23 years after the North Course. It measures more than 6,750 yards from the tips.

  • Visit the Canoe Brook Golf Club website here

Claremont, California

Crystal Downs, Michigan

Cypress Point, California

Green Hills, California

Haggin Oaks, California

Meadow, California

Melrose, Pennsylvania

Northwood, California

Ohio State University (Scarlet Course), Ohio

Pasatiempo, California

Redlands, California

Sharp Park, California

University of Michigan, Michigan

The Valley Club of Montecito

Uruguay

Club de Golf Uruguay

Fray Bentos

Now have your say

How many golf courses designed by Alister MacKenzie have you been lucky enough to play at? Which is your favourite MacKenzie-designed golf course is your favourite? Let us know 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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