Old Thorns Golf Review [Should You Play?]

Old Thorns is one of the premier resorts in Hampshire. The leisure venue has just about everything you need for a wonderful long or short break, with a health club and comfortable accommodations.

But if you’re looking for a golf break, you’re looking at playing somewhere with a good golf course. So how good is the golf course at Old Thorns Hotel & Resort? And does it match up to the quality of the hotel?

We recently got the chance to play the course at Old Thorns golf club. So here’s a quick review of what’s on offer.

Old Thorns Golf Review

Our Rating

Overall [3.6/5]
Course Design/Layout
Course Difficulty
Course Conditions
Green Conditions
Pace Of Play
Practice Facilities
Food & Drink
Value For Money

Course Information

Old Thorns, Longmoor Road, Griggs Green, Liphook, Hampshire, GU30 7PE.

18 Holes Course | Par 72 | 6288 Yards | Parkland



Set in the wonderful rolling Hampshire countryside, Old Thorns has an amazing landscape for golf. Surrounded by mature trees and several lakes, the Old Thorns golf course is an idyllic place for nature and great views.

A few minutes off the A3, the area is a hive of great golf, including other top courses such as Blackmoor and Liphook.

Old Thorns Golf Club Green Fees

April-September18 Holes
Weekday (Resident)£40
Weekend (Resident)£50

Old Thorns Golf Club Scorecard

Old Thorns Scorecard

Old Thorns Golf Club Slope Rating

TeeGenderSlope Rating

Pre-round Thoughts

I’m always a little skeptical of resorts with golf courses on. The focus for a lot of these places are more on the hospitality side and overall experience, rather than the actual golf course. So I was intrigued to see what the course at Old Thorns had to offer.

There’s no doubt that it’s a lovely venue to stay at. It’s got everything you need for a really nice break, whether that’s a spa trip or a weekend getaway. But a golf course to match the quality of the hotel? It would be interesting to see.

Price-wise, it’s a very reasonable rate for the area. £60 midweek for a round, which compared to £135 for Liphook and £95 at Blackmoor, seems like a pretty good price.

The golf course itself is designed by one of the game’s most loved characters and former golf commentator, Peter Alliss, so it’s sure to have a few interesting golf holes to enjoy.

The driving range is a great place to warm up before the round, but only if you want to hit a few irons. No woods are allowed because it’s so short. The Toptracer technology in each bay is a nice touch though, so you can see your distances.

After a quick browse in the pro shop and a putt on the practice putting green just opposite the first tee, we’re ready for the test.

Old Thorns Driving Range

The Course

The 18 hole parkland golf course is designed with a good mix of challenging holes and more scoreable holes.

The main challenges are the magnificent tree-lined holes, where the accuracy of the tee is important. As well as the range of water features around the course which are all strategically placed for difficulty.

For a par 72 layout, the course is far from long, but as you would expect for a resort course. Out in 36 and back in for 36, the card has a good mix of 3s, 4s and 5s of varying lengths and difficulties.

The layout certainly lends itself to positioning. A lot of the holes you can hit driver from the tee, but it’s not necessarily the best option.

Front Nine

The easier of the two nines (but only just), the front has a couple of good chances early on the pick-up a shot. However, a few of the holes can catch up out if not played correctly.

Par 3s – 4th, 7th

The first of the par 3s are the short but not easy 4th hole. It plays slightly uphill so take more than the 156 yardage and make sure to avoid the slope off on the right. Anything left should feed back down, just make sure to avoid any of the bushes.

Only slightly longer is the 7th hole at 161 yards from the backs. Despite its length, the par 3 is still a nightmare for a lot of amateur golfers. Narrow and the tee shot requires a carry over water all the way to the putting green. Avoid the magnet-like tree which will suck in the golf ball and spit it out into the water.

Par 4s – 1st, 3rd, 5th, 8th, 9th

The 1st is a strong opening hole that doglegs from left to right. The line is the post in the middle of the fairway. Make sure to get it far enough up to avoid being blocked out by the large tree on the right.

At 439 yards, the 3rd is one of the toughest holes on the course. A drive favoring the left side is perfect and for longer hitters, they can make it up the slope. Anything right is trouble and avoid the deep bunkers short right of the green.

The 5th is the signature hole at Old Thorns golf club. It’s certainly the most picturesque with amazing views across the Hampshire countryside from the elevated tee boxes. Positioning is key here as anything not in the right spot on the fairway will leave a very tricky approach to a tiny green complex surrounded by large trees and water front left.

8 is one of the best holes on the golf course. Another accurate drive is required avoiding the water all the way up the right side and the trees left which block you out for your approach. A 4 is a good score on this hole.

Number 9 is a classic short par 4 where many players will be able to drive the green. The challenge here is the deep bunkers, especially the front right. It’s a nice chance to end the nine with a birdie.

Par 5s – 2nd, 6th

The 2nd offers a good chance to pick up a shot early on in the round. The 499-yard dogleg runs adjacent to the 1st and slopes right to left the entire way. The tighter line to the left bunkers from the tee, the better approach will be left.

Number 6 is long, narrow, and full of danger. Out of bounds all the way up the left and water features throughout. The entrance to the green becomes very tight and three bunkers keep it protected.

Back Nine

The back nine starts difficult and ends difficult with a few rest bite holes in between.

Par 3s – 10th, 16th

The 10th is another of the most challenging holes on the course. The 216 yard par 3 is basically all carry over a couple of ponds. For many golfers, it’s everything you’ve got in the locker to walk away with a 3 here.

Number 16 is a pretty little par 3 that has a treacherous green to hit.Aim up the right side and let it feed back around. Don’t go long at all costs.

Par 4s – 11th, 12th, 13th, 15th, 18th

The first par 4 on the back comes at 11 and includes another of the lakes. A good drive will leave a fairly straightforward approach to a green which runs at an angle. Avoid the three deep bunkers short right.

12th and 13 both dog leg right and left respectively, and a 4 on either is a great score. Then you’ve got the interesting 15th hole which is another risk/reward par 4. If you can take the green on, the angle is tight and the margin for error is slim. The double-tiered green can make you look very silly with the flat stick.

The final hole is the hardest on paper and certainly can play it. Keep your drive down the right side and then try to avoid the large tree which sits short right of the green. Don’t get too aggressive with the approach or you’ll end up out of bounds long (and potentially ruining someone’s afternoon tea).

Par 5s – 14th, 17th

Number 14 is a relatively long dogleg left with a narrow exit from the tee box. Any ball right will end in a watery grave. If you can get to the green in regulation, keep it short of the flag as the green slopes heavily from back to front.

The 17th is the final par 5 at Old Thorns starts with an elevated tee box and requires a good tee shot tight to the bunkers on the left side of the fairway. A good tee shot opens up the angle for the approach to the green. Anything short right of the green will be getting wet.

Our Verdict

Enjoying a drink in the sports bar after the round, it’s clear to see that Old Thorns golf club is more than just a traditional resort golf course.

The design and layout make for a really beautiful golf course that has been designed magnificently well. The setting is a perfect place for golf. Imposing trees, lining almost every hole and testing tee shots for the whole 18 holes.

With so many tight holes and a few quirky holes, it’s a proper test of golf.

Is it the level of Liphook or Blackmoor? No, it’s not. The course conditions do let it down a little.

Unfortunately, we were playing a few weeks after course maintenance. The greens, and pace bit slow, but rolling fairly smoothly. A few holes had a very muddy fairway and a few other fairways were a little churned up. Other areas of the course are a little scruffy and could do with some love.

Having said that, the Old Thorns golf course is an enjoyable place to spend a few hours. The setting is just great and the layout does offer plenty of good holes. The 5th, in particular, offers incredible views of the Hampshire countryside. The layout does make up for the poor conditions, however, I don’t think I’d be happy paying much more than £40 for a round.

Overall, if you’re looking for a golf break in the South, Old Thorns Hotel & Resort is good value and comes with a better-than-average resort golf course.

Final Thoughts

That’s it for our review of Old Thorns golf club. It’s clearly a well-thought-out golf course, which with the right conditioning is a thoroughly pleasant place to play golf.

If you’re in the Hampshire area, check out our look at the best Hampshire golf courses, including North Hants and Stoneham.

Ed Welton

Founder, Editor

Ed is the founder and editor at EEE Golf. He’s been playing golf for over 20 years, competing in many top amateur events. He’s played courses all over the world and played with some of the best players in the game. His aim is to help educate people about the game of golf and give insights into the sport he loves most.

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