Featured Course - Ilkley

With a par of 69 and standard scratch of 70, this 6262 yard course is a great deal more difficult than it might first appear. Testament to this is the fact that the course record for a professional is only 64 and was set in 2000 by honorary life member Colin Montgomerie, one of the best golfers in the world.

Ilkley, with its iconic Moor, is one of the most famous towns in Yorkshire, and its golf course in the gorgeous Wharfe Valley, with that same Moor as a backdrop, one of the most delightful in the country. No less a golfer than Colin Montgomerie says " Ilkley always has a special place in my heart….a challenging test of golf with breathtaking scenery, it is always a pleasure to play there."

As that suggests, the place where the 7-times European Order of Merit winner honed his craft – and personally approves the signature 3rd - offers more than just beauty. With the River Wharfe a constant companion on the first seven holes just for starters, this tree-lined course is a fine test of golfing performance.

Yorkshire’s the third oldest golf club settled by the Wharfe in 1898, laid out the essence of the course the lucky visitor plays today in just a few months, and never looked back. Spend a day here now and you will find there are many reasons it is so popular, not least a range of menus to add flavour to the day.

Out on course each Ilkley hole set out on these gentle contours gives a different and delightful perspective, either on the Wharfe, which rises in the Dales and ultimately merges into the Yorkshire Ouse, or the surrounding moors, woodland or farmland.

Playing wise, golfers particularly benefit from hitting straight, rather than long, and soon understand that, with a par of 69 and standard scratch of 70, this 6262 yard course is more difficult than it first appears (as Montgomerie’s course record of 64 set in 2000 would suggest).

But more than a severe test though, the competent golfer will find Ilkley a first class course and enjoyable challenge in sylvan surroundings.