Ganton Golf Club

Ganton Golf Club ranks number 9 in the Golf World Top 100 Golf Courses in England and number 29 in the Golf World Top 100 Golf Courses in the UK and Ireland. 

The finest course in Yorkshire is an inland links which has hosted the Ryder Cup, the Walker Cup and the Curtis Cup. 

It is located in the Vale of Pickering between York and Scarborough, nine miles from the sea. Although it has a heathland look to it, Ganton plays more like a links due to the property on which it stands once being a North Sea inlet. It has over 100 devilish bunkers and the direction of the holes constantly changes.

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Gary Player once claimed that Ganton is the only inland course worthy of staging an Open Championship and the legendary, opinionated South African was making a valid point. 

Ganton, the course, has everything. It’s a serious test of golf as many of the game’s leading players have already discovered to their cost down the years. The only thing that lets it down in terms of putting on an Open is its remoteness. It is in the middle of nowhere and about ten miles from Scarborough with a lack of infrastructure. That hasn’t prevented it from successfully playing host  to many Amateur and Professional tournaments.

Following the staging of the Walker Cup, the Club has joined Royal Birkdale, The Honourable Company of Edinburgh Golfers and Royal Lytham & St Annes as being the only clubs honoured to have also staged the Curtis Cup and the Ryder Cup.

This outstanding heathland layout is more of an inland links and if you struggle to find the firm, crisp, fast-running fairways you’re likely to find the lethal combination of about 100 deep, punishing bunkers or dense rough or gorse. 

Ganton is right up there with the Woodhall Spas and Sunningdales and although the majority of holes are special in their own right, you’ll never forget the par-4 4th (after driving over a valley, you’re firing into a raised well guarded green) and the stirring climax which includes a long, intimidating par-3 (17th).

It is a bit off the beaten golf track and requires something of a golfing pilgrimage, but Ganton Golf Club's one that you won’t regret. This Yorkshire beauty offers a rare mix of sandy, heathland bliss with a hint of links appeal. It’s littered with punishing bunkers and wrapped in impenetrable gorse and heather. Be sure to take your ‘A’ game. 

Golf was first played at Ganton Golf Club in 1891 on a golf course laid out by Tom Chisholm of St Andrews, supported by Robert Bird, the club’s first pro and head greenkeeper. Over the years a whole string of golfing legends, including Braid, Colt and Alister Mackenzie have chipped in to turn Ganton into arguably the country’s premier inland golf course. 

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The Clubhouse

Ganton’s present Clubhouse was built in 1909 and replaced the original that resembled a cricket pavilion. It boasts first-class facilities with a warm welcome from the friendly staff.

A number of interesting items and photographs concerning the history of Ganton Golf Club are on display here.  These depict the International and National events that have been hosted by the Club and also include montages featuring Harry Vardon’s life at Ganton. Old photographs of the course and original clubhouse can also be viewed here. 

There are also three comfortable well-appointed lounges, a well stocked bar and a dining room with seating for 60 people. The Terrace overlooking the 18th green has wonderful views across the golf course to the Yorkshire Wolds.

Dormy House Accommodation

Vardon House, the "Dormy House" was opened in August 2018 and is situated just behind the Clubhouse and next to the Practice Ground. 

Compromising of 5 en-suite bedrooms (3 twin rooms and 2 single rooms), Vardon House can accommodate up to 8 golfers.  All of the rooms have televisions, hairdryers and tea/coffee making facilities.

The communal area is a great place to relax after your game and the kitchen area provides glasses and tea/coffee making facilities. From 8.30 am you can enjoy breakfast in the Clubhouse Dining Room which overlooks the 18th Green.

Gemma Keepin