Walton Heath Golf Club

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Walton Heath Golf Club
Club information
Coordinates 51°16′N 0°14′W / 51.27°N 0.24°W / 51.27; -0.24
Location Surrey, England
Established 1903
Type Private
Total holes 36
Tournaments hosted U.S. Open Qualifying,
Ryder Cup (1981),
European Open (1978–91),
Senior Open Championship (2011)
Website www.waltonheath.com
Old Course
Designed by Herbert Fowler
Par 72
Length 7,462 yards
New Course
Designed by Herbert Fowler
Par 72
Length 7,026 yards

Walton Heath Golf Club is a golf club near Walton-on-the-Hill in Surrey, England, that was founded in 1903.

The club comprises two 18-hole golf courses, both of which are well known for having heather covering many of the areas of rough.[1] The Old Course was the first to open in 1904, and (as of 2009) has a championship length of 7,462 yards. The New Course was initially opened as a 9-hole course in 1907, but was later extended to 18 holes, which were completed by 1913, and (as of 2009) has a championship length of 7,026 yards. Both the courses were designed by Herbert Fowler, who would later design a number of other courses in both the United Kingdom and United States.

Walton Heath has had a long association with royalty and politics, with Edward, Prince of Wales having been the club's first captain in 1935, and former United Kingdom Prime Ministers David Lloyd George, Winston Churchill, Andrew Bonar Law and Arthur Balfour all having been members. The club has also only ever had three club professionals, including five time British Open champion James Braid who held the post until 1950.[1][2]

Both courses at Walton Heath have been consistently rated in the UK's top 100 courses, with the Old Course also being rated as one of the top 100 in the world.[2][3]

Tournaments[edit]

Walton Heath is the venue of a number of national amateur tournaments and championships. It has also hosted several high profile professional events including the 1981 Ryder Cup, when it stepped in as a replacement venue after construction at The Belfry had not been completed in time.[4] The club also hosted five editions of the European Open, a European Tour event, between 1978 and 1991.[5]

Since 2005, Walton Heath has been the venue for the U.S. Open European qualifying tournament.[6] In the first year, New Zealander Michael Campbell qualified at Walton Heath, and went on to win the Open at Pinehurst.[7]

Walton Heath hosted The Senior Open Championship, one of the five majors recognised by the Champions Tour, the world's dominant tour for golfers 50 and older, from 21–24 July 2011. The event was eventually won by Russ Cochran

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Farrell, Andy (17 December 2003). "Walton Heath's history reveals treasure trove of characters". London: The Independent. Retrieved 2009-04-07. 
  2. ^ a b "Walton Heath Golf Club (Old)". top100golfcourses.co.uk. Retrieved 2009-04-07. 
  3. ^ "Europeans fight for US Open spots". BBC Sport. 5 June 2005. Retrieved 2009-04-07. 
  4. ^ "Ryder Cup history: 1981". BBC Sport. 14 September 2006. Retrieved 2009-04-07. 
  5. ^ "European Open – Past Winners". PGA European Tour. Retrieved 2009-04-07. [dead link]
  6. ^ "England to hold US Open qualifier". BBC Sport. 14 February 2005. Retrieved 2009-04-07. 
  7. ^ "Hard graft pays off for Campbell". BBC Sport. 20 June 2005. Retrieved 2009-04-07. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 51°16′25″N 0°14′21″W / 51.2737°N 0.2392°W / 51.2737; -0.2392