Richmond Golf Club, situated just outside the historic town on the edge of the Yorkshire Dales, is a real gem. Not overly long, it’s still a great test for golfers, thanks in part to its superb undulating greens. Boasting such glorious views, it’s an absolute pleasure to play at any time of the year.
Richmond Golf Club was founded in 1892 and has been played at its current site, Bend Hagg, since 1904 after members decamped from the site of the old racecourse half a mile away.
Today’s 18 holes comprise eight of the original nine holes and the ten which were added in 1972 by celebrated course designer, Fred Pennink, who expertly utilised every square foot of space then available to create a cracking little golf course in a fabulous rolling parkland setting.
Extra length has been found down the years and the course now measures almost 700 yards longer than it did 40 years ago. Even now, at 6083 yards, it is not a long course, but the real test at Richmond has always been accuracy rather than length.
And then, of course, there are the greens! If you want to test your putting skills, you’ve come to the right place. Undulating and slick, the greens here can take some reading, but they are true and fair and a good putter will be rewarded. Being quite exposed, the wind can get up something fierce at times, too. But whatever the weather, a CSS of 70 against a par of 71 properly reflects that Richmond can in no circumstances be described as a pushover.
There are four par 5s and 5 par 3s, the signature hole being the short (162yds men, 119yds ladies) 18th, where the tee shot is hit over a small wood to a green in front of the clubhouse, a picturesque setting to rival any in Yorkshire. A pretty, but deadly hole, named ‘Hades’ for good reason.
Nearby Richmond is steeped in history and a hub for holidaymakers touring the Yorkshire Dales. But golfers keen to explore the surrounding area should leave enough time for a meal and a drink in the sun lounge overlooking the 18th green to soak up the tranquil atmosphere and take in the wonderful scenery, which changes so wonderfully with the seasons.