Golf Course Review of Liphook Golf Club
Liphook Golf Course
Reviewed by Ed Battye -
Quick Summary: A beautiful heathland course with fairways that wander through mature woodland
Our 5 Star Rating: 4.2
There’s no denying that Liphook is a very fine golf course, 18 holes played over beautiful undulating heathland with fairways that wander through mature woodland.
It has some interesting green complexes, superb putting surfaces, fine bunkering and is a lovely place to play golf.
That all said, something just didn’t quite click for me here and I came away a little underwhelmed.
I know of many others who won’t agree with this sentiment and they sing Liphook’s praises to the hilt. I liked it very much but didn’t love it like I thought I might. Perhaps it just didn’t suit my eye.
Or maybe it was my high expectations, of a course that features favourably in all the various rankings, that wasn’t quite met. There are certainly some excellent holes at Liphook but the highs weren’t quite as high as I anticipated, or indeed had hoped for.
I played it on the same day as nearby Blackmoor and contrary to popular opinion I found its near neighbour to be superior, albeit slightly, in most departments. It’s personal opinion of course and a second playing of each venue may well change my perspective but for now I can only write about my initial experience.
The opening paragraphs here may sound a little bit negative and I would like to stress that for the most part Liphook is good to very good and at times shows flashes of brilliance. One of these is shown as early as the second in the form of a 431-yard par four that asks you to shape the ball left-to-right from the tee before playing over a ridge to a partially hidden green.
The approach to the fourth is also of particularly high quality where you can actually work your ball in from the right to avoid the hidden swale towards the front-left of the green. This is one of just a few holes that favours a running approach. Liphook is not a long course at just 6,194 yards from the white tees (6,301 from the blues) and the majority of the time the aerial route, often with a short iron, to the receptive greens is the best options.
Two fine short holes make up the opening quartet. The 202-yard opener requires you to be on top of your game from the off and the short third is 100% pure delight.
We face a long walk and must cross a road to play holes five through to 14. The sixth, seventh, 12th and 13th on this section of the property are the best holes whilst virtually every green has some interesting borrows and the condition of the surfaces ensured that putting on them was not only a joy but also challenging and fun.
For the final four holes we must re-cross the busy road that dissects the course. We initially play two medium length par fours; the first legs to the right, the second to the left. The latter is a wonderful hole with a terrific short approach. Although I liked the angle of the gully on the 17th there was a very claustrophobic feel to this 158-yard hole and I’m sure it would benefit from being opened up by clearing a lot of trees and shrubbery that surround the green.
Maybe Liphook saves the best for last because the 18th is a real cracker with a blind drive and lovely looking approach. It’s a modest par five at just 462 yards and will allow many golfers to finish on a high note.
I strongly suspect I will return to Liphook for another look. Fingers crossed it’s a grower!
Liphook is featured in the National Club Golfer Top 100 under £100 Golf Courses of Great Britain.