Royal Lytham & St Annes Golf Club

Blackpool, England

Royal Lytham & St Annes Golf Club overview

Royal Lytham and St Annes Golf Club was founded in 1886 and the present course built in 1897. Located on the Golf Coast just north of Southport, Lytham is consistently ranked within the top 20 best courses in the UK and top 60 worldwide. Bobby Jones won the first Open Championship to be held here in 1926 and it’s also where the great Seve Ballesteros burst onto the international scene and won his maiden Open Championship in 1979 as a swashbuckling 22-year-old.

Curtis Cups, Walker Cups and Ryder Cups have also been staged here along with Women’s British Opens and Senior Opens. Along with the other two Royals of Birkdale and Liverpool along this stretch of Irish Sea coastline, Lytham makes up a pretty formidable trio.

Royal Lytham & St Anne's Golf Course overview

Royal Lytham is everything you would expect from a classic links course, with the minor exception that it is no longer located adjacent to the sea. Unusually it now lies half a mile inland and is surrounded by red brick houses and flanked on the west by the railway line. The course is tough with only Carnoustie considered more difficult on The Open rota, and although the ground is relatively even throughout it’s the rough, pot bunkers and sandhills that cause problems along with the firm and fast greens.

A par-70 and just over 7100 yards off the tips, Lytham could never be described as a classic links course as it doesn’t have any giant dunes or rollercoaster fairways, however, it is always in immaculate condition with lots of honesty and character.

Signature Holes

Has to be the first due it being the only par-3 opening hole on The Open Championship rota. 206 yards from the tips, this is where Ian Woosnam famously hit a fine tee shot when in contention for his first Claret Jug, sank the putt for birdie only to then realize he had an illegal 15 clubs in his bag. His caddy got the blame and lost his job!

Did You Know?

This is where David Duval won his only major championship in 2001. At that time he was the only real challenger to Tiger Woods and at the pinnacle of his game. Sadly this didn’t last very long.

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