Royal West Norfolk Golf Club (Brancaster) is an outstanding links course set on the North Norfolk coast.
Founded in 1892, Royal West Norfolk Golf Club is a classic, nothing much has changed here for 100 years. Squeezed beautifully between Brancaster Bay and the salt marshes, Royal West Norfolk truly is a peaceful golf links, except when the wind blows and boy, is the wind bracing here!
The Club is unusual in that its royal status was conferred at the outset, with the Prince of Wales, later to become King Edward VII, accepted the invitation to become the Club’s Patron. Four Members of the Royal Family have captained the Club over the years, the Duke of Gloucester, the Duke of Windsor and two Dukes of Kent.
Check the tide times before you plan your trip to Royal West Norfolk Golf Club. The course plays on a narrow strip of links-land which gets cut off at high tide, turning it into an island. If you are lucky enough to play the course during high tide, you are in for a real treat; the downside is that you will need plenty of golf balls.
Prior to your game, grab a quick drink in the oak-panelled Smoke Room inside the Victorian clubhouse and check the wind speed on the gauge next to the bar. If you want to eat after your round, make sure you order before you play, otherwise you will only be offered a choice of delicious cakes.
Out on the course, you feel delightfully isolated; often all you can hear are the seductive sounds of the wind, the seagulls, the clinking of stays and the flapping of boat sails. Essentially, the course is a traditional out and back links; huge sleeper-faced bunkers, fast greens and that beautiful links turf. A magical place to play golf. However, three-ball play is only allowed at the discretion of the Secretary and four-ball play is forbidden.
At 6,457 yards and par 71, the course is not particularly long, but, situated as it is right on the North Norfolk coast, it is often subjected to very windy conditions. The outward 9 measures 3,409 yards, as against the 3,048 yards coming home, but the prevailing wind can make the inward 9 very hard. It is a fine example of a links course, predominantly going out inland and coming back along the coast.
Note that visitors are welcome, although numbers are strictly limited