Scottish Enigma with great Golfing Architecture
Round £30 ( any day). Par 73. Value (out of 5) – 4
Letham Grange, on the outskirts of Arbroath, has likely had more written about it in court proceedings than in golfing magazines! It is one of the failed attempts in Scotland to create an American style Golf & Country Club Estate similar to Gleneagles, or Wentworth in Surrey. Opened in 1987 as a full resort, the hotel and many facilities are long since closed.
The club members, several living in the many fine houses which still adorn the fairways, now do a great job at keeping the Old course and the smaller Glens course open.
The Old Course is a par 73 Championship American-style parkland layout, designed by the renowned Donald Steel, and which twice held the Scottish Open in its heyday.
There is great variety on this course, presenting a variety of challenges. It has, in particular, some memorable water hazards on the par 3 8th hole, and par 4 10th hole – indeed the 8th through 10th feel like an “Amen Corner” of Angus – the 9th, the stroke index 1 hole, is a long and very difficult par 5, with a demanding drive.
The highlight of this course is now in the architecture, and it’s probably not surprising to find the quality level of greens, fairways and tees less than in it’s prime – the bunkers were the most disappointing when I played, being filled with very stony sand. However, the lessor quality is more than compensated for in the relatively low price of £30 per round. I was able to play on the Carnoustie Country offer, and paid only £15.
I had a reasonable round with 33 stableford points, but again two 9s on the par 5s, put paid to a decent medal score.
It’s well worth playing Letham Grange Old course, and just imagining the fine old building behind the 18th green in full use. Now empty, it provides a rather forlorn backdrop.
Course Type: Parkland
Par 70 (5 par 5s, 9 par 4s, 4 par 3s)
Distance (white) 6348 yards
Moly’s Gross Score 97