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Highclere Golf Club, Hants. (1901 - WW2) 

The course was in existence during the 5th Earl of Carnarvon's time - he succeeded to the title in 1890. There are some photographs on display in one of the parts of the Castle open to the public (the basement corridor near the tea room) showing the opening of the course by J H Taylor and James Braid. The caption gives the date 8 July 1901.

Report from the Reading Mercury Saturday 13th July 1901 regarding the opening of the course:

“A golf course extending to a distance of four miles, and consisting of nine greens and holes, has just been opened at Highclere. The course, which is very highly spoken of, commences at the foot of Beacon Hill, on Lord Carnarvon’s estate. The links was used for the first time on Monday, when two famous professionals, James Braid and J H Taylor, played an exhibition game, which was followed with interest by Lord Carnarvon, Prince Duhleep Singh, and other members of the Highclere Castle party, while several members from Crookham Golf Club were present, and the boys from Horris Hill Schools, the masters at which institution are all keen golfers”

On Saturday July 19th 1913 Princess Victoria of Schleswig-Holstein played in a foursome on the (new) Highclere Castle course.

It was reported in the Cork Examiner in March 1923 that in accordance with his wishes the late Lord Carnarvon was to be buried at the top of Beacon Hill which is 900 feet above sea level, and overlooking the golf links at Highclere.

In 1928 when the secretary was E J Maguire, Ivory House, Burghclere and the greenkeeper G Hillier. Visitors, fees were 2/6 a day, 7/6 a week and 21/- a month. Sunday play was allowed. The station was at Burghclere (GWR) was 1 ½  miles away.

In 1930 the secretary was F B Sinclair, Blackford, Highclere and the greenkeeper G Hillier. Amateur course record H C Smith 73. Membership was 100.

In 1935 the secretary was Col T Shepard DSO, Sungrove, East Woodham, Newbury.

Report below outlines the uncertainty of the clubs future with the onset of WW2.


Highclere Golf Club, Hants. Troubled times at the golf club at the onset of WW2.

Above from the Reading Mercury Saturday 16th December 1939.


The club's final appearance was in 1940 when the secretary was D McMillan, Springfield, Highclere, telephone 132. The greenkeeper was still G Hillier. An 18 hole course with a SSS of 73 and a membership of 100. Amateur course record was held by H C Smith 73. Visitors fees and station as 1928.

The  golf course was located at the southern end of the Park, just to the west of Beacon Hill and a little to the east of  Sidown Warren Farm. Much of the land in this area, apparently including at least part of the course and an associated house, was used for various military purposes in the Second World War - the Home Guard was using an adjacent rifle range in the area in the early part of the war, but this, apparently with the golf course land, was requisitioned by the Air Ministry in 1943, at which time there were also corn ricks on the golf course - which suggests that at least part of it had been given over to agriculture. The golf club house was de-requisitioned and released to the Womens Land Army in 1943 to be used to accommodate Land Girls working on the estate.

The Google Map Below pinpoints the location of the former golf course at Highclere.