Europe’s only dual nationality venue, 15 holes in Wales and three in Shropshire, England, a dramatic landscape and the place where a young Ian Woosnam learned his golf. The societies who yearn for something a little different on their schedules need to look no further.
Llanymynech is perched on top of a prominent Welsh border hill and surrounded by sheer cliff faces, some areas exist where you just don’t look for your ball should it stray offline. But it’s not like it’s too far from civilisation, only 5 miles away from Oswestry and nothing much more than an hours drive from the centre of our region via the A5.
The course will test your skills and your stamina in equal measures, a real rollercoaster ride of a game lies in wait, always quality and punctuated with some real stand out holes. After a gentle climb to begin with two short holes in the first three, comes your brief English section.
Historic Hole (L) – 4th 340/331 yards Par 4
Drive-in Wales, Putt in England goes the saying, which is true except in our case it was hook in Wales, lose the ball in England!
Nevertheless, this hole with its claim to fame is a lovely tree-lined dog leg where good placement is key in making a tight approach to a bunker-clad two-tiered green just that little bit easier. A hybrid then a short iron in is the clever tactic, the big hitting comes later.
Returning to Wales in time for a super pair of par fours, seven and eight share the same slender brook running down the side of their fairways which doesn’t look anything else than aesthetically pleasing from the lofted tees. Somehow though it also proved to possess magnetic powers for our only slightly offline golf balls!
Despite the lofty position, the course is very much parkland in appearance and playability, with a few gorse and heather patches reminder, mainly on the back nine of a more heathland some of the terrain.
Two tough challenges around the turn, the stroke index one long ninth effortlessly justifies its rating but does take you neatly back neatly to the clubhouse.
Up the bank to the short 10th with a good carry needed to carry the ravine in front of the putting surface. Throw a likely breeze into the mix and you have a potential card wrecker, but then Llanymynech sympathetically gives you something back.
Hopeful Hole – 11th 255/249 yards Par 4
Pretty much a blind tee shot with just the marker post up the bank to aim for but hit it straight and the downwards slope on the other side will do the work, provided you miss the pair of traps guarding the green there may just be a putt for eagle awaiting.
The awesome surroundings reach a peak on the 12th tee where you are treated to panoramic views of seven Welsh and English counties on a clear day. No time for a lack of concentration though, this is one of two par fours on the back nine that proves very hard to reach in regulation for the average golfer. Uphill late challenges at the 16th and 17th will prove tricky too before you reach what is surely the highlight.
Heavenly Hole – 18th 382 yards Par 4
It’s highly unlikely too many other golf courses in Britain can match up to this tee shot view. You’re (safely) perched on a cliff face with tremendous views far into the distance. Your landing zone is a good 100 feet below you and will inspire one last big driver effort. Yet you will need your very best golf to finish with a favorable par as there’s a pretty tricky approach in-store as well to a tucked away and exposed green site.
A great way to finish an exhilarating round, the course is always well-conditioned and the greens are fast and testing in places. Great pride should be taken in a handicap equaling round here, yet even a poor one won’t trouble you as much at Llanymynech as it might do elsewhere.
Membership and practice
The clubhouse is the social epicenter of the club, a strong membership here and visitors can also relax in a pub-like atmosphere with a busy program of club comps and social events.
Lots of membership categories ranging from £195 (student) to £690 (full 7 days). Llanymynech also shares reciprocal green fee arrangements with notable clubs including Conwy, Vale of Llangollen and Beau Desert.
There is a 200-yard long practice area with sheltered bays to hit from and a large putting green. Good supply of buggies available to hire.
A warm welcome to golfing groups of all sizes – with seven days a week availability
Par – Tea, coffee and bacon rolls, 18 holes, Weekday £30pp – Weekend £40pp