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Heythrop Park Resort Hole Guide

Hole No. 1
Jesuitís Graveyard
457 Yards
Par 4
The course starts with a strong par-4 situated in front of the clubhouse and close to the Short Game Practice Area. The tee shot has to be threaded between 300 year old beech trees on the right and a Jesuitís Graveyard on the left to set up a testing approach shot to a raised green protected by a bunker short and on the left-hand side of the putting surface. The young Beech trees down the right were planted in straight lines to re-create an avenue the original landscape plan produced by Thomas Bainbridge back in 1706.
Hole No. 2
Church View
187 Yards
Par 3
Heythrop Parkís first short hole enjoys a delightful view over farm land towards Heythrop Church. It requires an accurate tee shot to find an undulating but generously large green that slopes from back to front and is protected by two bunkers on the left. It pays to be accurate because any shot hit long or right will be difficult to get up and down.
Hole No. 3
Tew Approach
445 Yards
Par 4
The third is similar to the opening hole in as much as it required a long and accurate drive to avoid three well-placed fairway bunkers on the left and set up a downhill second to a long and narrow green protected by a deep bunker on the left and a hollow on the right that feeds into a valley. The hole is often made more difficult because it is played into the prevailing South West wind.
Hole No. 4
The Wall
530 Yards
Par 5
Heythropís first long hole provides a fine example of all the hard work that has been done to restore the Estate to how it looked back in the early 18th century. It is dominated by the impressive dry stone dyke that stretches down the right and separates the hole from the dense Foxberry Wood. This is a hole that will test all those golfers who hit the ball from left-to-right but is a genuine birdie opportunity for the player who hits the ball straight and can avoid the three bunkers situated between 100 and 65 yards short of the green. Ideally, it is best to play left to right from the tee and right to left on the second if the green is to be reached in two shots.
Hole No. 5
Foxberry Wood
377 Yards
Par 4
As you walk through the stone gates from the 4th green, buzzards can regularly be seen sitting in the trees surrounding the elevated tee. However, golfers might well be more concerned with hitting a tee shot that avoids the stream leading to the pond and the two bunkers that guard the landing area. The ideal tee shot will split the fairway between the pond and the first of the bunkers leaving a short iron to a narrow green protected by a bunker on the left and a deep swale on the right.
Hole No. 6
314 Yards
Par 4
Heythropís 6th hole is destined to feature heavily in golf magazines. Itís stunning to look at and is a great example of what the course architects would describe as a genuine risk and reward hole. The long hitters might choose to try to drive the green but they will discover there is no margin for error down the left where the water eats into the green. A tee shot hit right is a safer option but has to miss the fairway bunker and will still leave a tricky approach over a well-placed bunker. The backdrop is dominated by the historic Archer Bridge that traverses the water on the way to the next tee.
Hole No. 7
The Fishing Lakes
425 Yards
Par 4
The challenging seventh hole is built on what was once known as Wrightens Meadow and requires an accurate tee shot down the left-hand side of the fairway, thus avoiding the water on the right. This leaves an uninterrupted view of a small green protected by three deep bunkers on the right-hand side. A drive hit too far to the right of the fairway bunker will also find the fairway but will leave a blind approach to the green.
Hole No. 8
Kite Grove
414 Yards
Par 4
Heythropís 8th hole is a strong par-4 that sweeps uphill over water and then turns to the right towards a raised green protected by a front bunker. Itís a hole that favours the longer hitter and will need a tee shot of at least 240 yards to leave an uninterrupted view of the green. Many golfers will play it as a par-5 and accept anything less as a bonus.
Hole No. 9
222 Yards
Par 3
The front nine concludes with one of the most picturesque short holes in England. It is dominated by four ornate ponds that eat into the right of the green but also features a well-placed bunker that will catch out the golfer who attempts to bale out to the left. The hole is named after the historic Serpentine Walk that can be found to the rear of the green.
Hole No. 10
Little Paddock
452 Yards
Par 4
Heythrop Park is renowned for its historic walled gardens and one of the best examples can be found to the right of this demanding par-4 where bunkers eat into both the right and the left of the landing area and the green is surrounded by an ancient Orchard that has recently been replanted to replicate the 18th Century design with traditional species of Apple, Pear and Cherry. Historians should note the oldest Crown Bowling Green in England can be found nestling in the woods just to the right of the green.
Hole No. 11
South Avenue
577 Yards
Par 5
The second of Heythropís four par-5s meanders downhill towards the old Skating Lake before turning sharply towards a small green built round to the left between the water and the ancient woodland. The lie of the land means the big hitters can reach the green in two but the safer option might be to lay up short of the water and then try to get up-and-down from there.
Hole No. 12
Great Cow Meadow
Par 4
416 Yards
The par-4 12th can be found alongside the 2 mile-long drive that leads to the Main Hall, hotel and clubhouse and is dominated by a massive gnarled Oak tree that bisects the fairway 200 yards from the Championship tee. A forest and stream line the right hand side and itís another tough two-shotter not least because the green is barely 20-yards deep and is protected by bunkers on both the left and the right. The adjacent property off the right of the green was once owned by the Jesuit Order who used it as a centre for philosophical and theological studies.
Hole No. 13
Cold Bath Terrace
Par 3
203 Yards
The golfer gets to the 13th by walking along Cotswold stone (from the estate) walls with cascades from the natural streams a pathway thatís known locally as Cold Bath Terrace in recognition of the small stone edifice in which the local ladies used to relax and watch a steady stream of carriages pass by during the 18th and 19th centuries. The par-3 which bears its name is somewhat more demanding and requires an accurate tee shot over an attractive cascading stream to a green cut into the side of a hill. The stream is lined with Cotswold stone taken from around from the estate and is as pretty as a picture, so itís hard to believe the land on which it is built was used as a rubbish tip for much of the 20th century.
Hole No. 14
The Glyne
Par 5
525 Yards
The area in which the 12th and 13th holes sit is reminiscent of Augustaís Amen Corner and that feeling is accentuated by the contours found on the par-5 14th which is similar to Augustaís 13th hole in as much as it sweeps from right to left around trees to a low-lying green. This is a hole that will suit the golfer who draws the ball as the tee shot sweeps to the left through an avenue of trees. It also calls for imagination because the approach can either be hit high or low depending on the conditions of the day.
Hole No. 15
Tamís Bluff
Par 3
196 Yards
Course designer, Tom Mackenzie, is on record as saying he was worried about the uphill walk from the 14th green to the next tees but the effort is well worthwhile because the short incline brings the golfer to a memorable short hole with panoramic views over the surrounding countryside. The hole is often played down the prevailing South Westerly wind, making club selection difficult. It is made more demanding still by the provision of a bluff bunker which is situated 25 yards short and makes the green seem much closer than it is.
Hole No. 16
Par 4
342 Yards
The journey home continues with a short but treacherous par-4 that heads back towards the main Hall. On first sight the green looks within range but it pays to think twice before reaching for the driver because it is well protected by two bunkers and by rows of trees protecting both sides of the fairway. The safer option might be to hit an iron down the centre of the fairway and then flight a wedge or 9-iron over the sand and into the heart of the green, which falls away slowly to the back.
Hole No. 17
The Duel
Par 4
464 Yards
The 17th is the last of seven par-4s measuring over 400 yards and it is arguably the most demanding of them all because it plays up hill to a testing green. The regular menís tee is situated some 30 yards further forward but even from here a four will be viewed as a bonus and a five is no bad result.
Hole No. 18
Grand Avenue
Par 5
596 Yards
The closing hole at Heythrop has a strong claim to be regarded as the straightest hole in world golf. It measures close to 600-yards from the Championship tee and seems even longer still because the view is elongated by the majestic main house which sits some 100 yards or so behind the green. The drive and the second shot should be aimed at the front entrance while the approach is made more difficult to judge because of the absence of bunkers around the green, which is guarded by a series of deep grass hollows.
* All yardages are provisional and are from the Championship tees
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Heythrop Park
OX7 5UE or OX7 5UF
For SatNav:
Please Note: Some SatNavs will direct you to the opposite side of the estate where there is no access for vehicles. To avoid this, please ensure that the directions lead you in to the resort via ĎThe Drive, Church Enstoneí