The greatest golf courses occupy great pieces of land with natural forms providing opportunities for visually stimulating and challenging golf holes. At Billingham Golf Club, these forms create the opportunity to venture up and over slopes with fairways bordered by a diverse mix of trees, while water comes into play sparingly and enhances the challenge of just a few holes.
While the club was founded in 1967, the golf course – overseen by designer Frank Pennink – officially opened for play in 1969. Today, many will be surprised to learn it is little more than 50 years old given the maturity of the trees and the strategic roles they play. Many more will be surprised by the pictures in the clubhouse showing the distinct lack of trees here in the first 20 years of the course’s existence.
While trees form the primary defence, bunkering here is penal and positioned to provide challenges for better players and obvious routes around for the higher handicapper. The green complexes have a modern feel, using mounding and slopes to support the challenge presented by the bunkering.
A fine example of English parkland golf laid out on a fantastic piece of land, Billingham is tremendous fun to play, and is home to first-class facilities.
he club continues to invest in facilities in the clubhouse, on the golf course, and the extensive practice facilities. The next generation of players continue to be welcomed to the club through school coaching programmes, Get into Golf and Girls Golf Rocks – all of which have boosted membership in recent years.