South Devon: In the footsteps of giants...

Off the beaten track, but easily reached from London, Charles McLaughlin discovers a forgotten quartet of superb courses created by the finest architects of the Golden Age of course design

East Devon 9th & 10th hole


If one course summarises the attraction of south Devon, this is it. Designed in 1902 by the legendary Herbert Fowler and with both Harry Colt and James Braid remodeling the original, this picturesque gem gently climbs to the clifftops and back. Walking only, but not too strenuous and at around 6,200yds from the tips, not too long either. Onus is on accuracy over distance, with the heather taking a toll on errant drives and tricky undulating greens requiring thoughtful approaches. The elevated par three 10th is a cracker over heather and gorse to a 3-tiered green.

East Devon 17th hole approach angle

The vista from the 16th was called the “best view in golf” by Peter Allis and it’s hard to argue with that. In fact, the closing stretch from 15th onwards may be one of the most picturesque in the world. Clifftop erosion has already led to some rerouting so get in quick! Trevor Underwood runs a well-stocked and friendly pro shop and the clubhouse has a delightful terrace running alongside the 18th. Just the spot for a Devon Cream tea, watching all too many players catch the front right bunker!

This is a very active, social, strong locally supported club and it shows. Very welcoming, and with a great choice of food and drink at keen prices, you won’t want to leave!

East Devon 6th


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