GLYNHIR GOLF CLUB
Glynhir Road, Llandybie, Ammanford
GLYNHIR GOLF CLUB (INTRODUCTION)
The first golf course in the Llandeilo area dates back to 1910, built initially as a nine hole course on the Ffairfach side of the river Tywi, near to Tregib Mansion (now Tregib School). The Carmarthen Journal reports that a meeting was held at the Cawdor Hotel, Llandeilo, on December 27th 1909 to discuss the desirability of a golf club. Land was soon leased from a local Ffairfach farmer and Llandeilo Golf Club opened in 1910.
At that time golf was still a minority sport, played only by participants from the well-to-do business, professional and gentry classes. Those who play golf today, however, come from a much more mixed and representative social base than even fifty years ago, and many British golf courses are publicly owned facilities run by local councils. This includes some of the most famous golf courses in the world, notably in Scotland, some of which host the annual Open Golf Tournament. Garnant Park Golf Course was opened in the Amman Valley in 1998 and it, too, is a public course, owned by Carmarthenshire County Council. In keeping with the mining history and traditions of the area served by Garnant golf course each of the eighteen holes is named after a former coal mine (For details of Garnant Golf Course, click HERE.
While many golf clubs are commercial enterprises, built and owned by businessmen purely for profit, most are in fact owned by their membership, whose fees maintain the greens and clubhouse and pay the staff. The day-to-day running of these clubs is undertaken by a committee and officers, usually elected by the membership on a regular basis.
As the population of Llandeilo and its surrounding villages grew during the twentieth century the nine holes of the original golf course proved inadequate to cater to the rapidly increasing membership and a decision was taken in the 1960s to develop a completely new course at nearby Glynhir. The fields on either side of Glynhir Road near the junction with Llandyfan were purchased, and in 1967 a brand new clubhouse and greens were opened, this time with the full complement of 18 holes, and has proved a popular and thriving golf club ever since. The new course at Glynhir has merely swapped one delightful riverside location for another, for today its inward nine holes follow the banks of the river Llwchwr instead of the river Tywi of the original golf course. Llwchwr is rather a difficult name for non-Welsh speakers to pronounce (where are the vowels, we hear them ask), so the native Welsh have kindly provided an English version for the English to chew over instead—Loughor. Despite this, many English speakers can still find Loughor a major obstacle to pronunciation. The name Llwchwr comes from two Welsh words: llwch, an obsolete word for lake, which still exists in modern Scottish Gaelic as loch (not to be confused with the modern usage of llwch, which means dust, or powder in Welsh), and dwr, water. The name contains within it the origins of the river itself, which gushes from a nearby underwater lake system through a fissure in a rock known as Llygad Llwchwr (the Eye of the Loughor). Hence Llwchwr means llwch dwr—literally, lake water. Just two hundred yards downstream from Glynhir Golf Course the Llwchwr becomes the highest waterfall in Carmarthenshire when it obligingly plunges thirty feet over a limestone outcrop.
Glynhir Falls (photograph taken around 1900)
Whatever its name, this heavily wooded river provides a delightful setting to pursue a little white ball for a few hours of leisurely perambulation (some acid-tongued wag once described golf as a waste of a good walk but it's doubtful if he ever said it within earshot of any golfers).
The name of the golf course, Glynhir, means the long valley (glyn = valley and hir = long). However, until recent times this old gentry estate was spelled Clunhir on maps and would then mean the long meadow (clun = meadow). Either explanation is geographically possible as the Glynhir estate stretches along the western side of the Llwchwr valley. And before the land was parcelled out as fields and farms it would have indeed been a 'long meadow' running above the western bank of the river Llwchwr.
Glynhir was originally a seventeenth century mansion with an exensive estate owned by a local gentry family of French Huguenot (ie Protestant) descent called the DuBuissons. The estate passed out of the family's hands in 1921 and has since been broken up. The old mansion house of Glynhir, however, can still be found just a couple of hundred yards from the golf course, a hotel now, its various outhouses converted into self-catering units. The greens of today's golf course were once meadows on the Glynhir estate. And if you like a bit of intrigue while you go about your round of golf, your imagination might carry you back to the Napoleonic Wars when the French-descended DuBuisson family were suspected of harbouring Napoleon's spies in the cellars of Glynhir mansion. There was also a local legend that homing pigeons from the estate's dovecote were used to bring the news of Wellington's victory at the battle of Waterloo to Glynhir's owners. As a local historian has written:
Local tradition very definitely asserts that the Du Buissons were in close touch with France during the 17891815 period [ie the years of the French Revolution and the subsequent Napoleonic wars], and this tradition can be safely accepted. But it is difficult to accept the suggestion that the family acted in an unpatriotic spirit.
....Local stories suggest that the Du Buissons 'were favourable to' their native land, that arms were made at their factory and smuggled to France and that use was made of pigeons for maintaining treasonable relations with France.
....The facts however suggest another explanation, although it is easy to understand that in such a disturbed and tense period it was natural to suspect anybody of foreign origin. Glynhir certainly had a large dovecot but it was not unusual for country houses, until the development of winter feeding for animals, to keep a large number of pigeons as a means of providing supplementary food.
[A Carmarthenshire Huguenot Family: the Du Buissons of Glynhir, Llandebie; T. H. Lewis, M.A., H.M.I.; The Carmarthen Antiquary II, (1945-6), pp.10 - 23]
For a fuller history of the Glynhir estate and the Dubuisson family, including the Napoleonic legends attached to the place, see 'The Dubuissons of Glynhir' in the 'History' section of this website or click HERE.
GLYNHIR GOLF CLUB TODAY
This Welsh golf course was designed by Charles Hawtree and has been described as a 'little gem'. It is 6,026 yards in length, with a par of 69 for men and 71 for ladies. Located at the foot of the Black Mountain in Carmarthenshire, it is situated in an area of outstanding natural beauty just a mile or so from the Brecon Beacons National Park.
Glynhir is a well-groomed 18-hole mature parkland course three miles from the town centre of Ammanford and five miles from the town of Llandeilo, at the western end of the beautiful Brecon Beacons National Park. It is surrounded by fine countryside and beautiful views, with the River Loughor and Gwyddfan brook running alongside its boundaries.
Glynhir Golf Course
It offers a variety of interesting holes that are hard enough to test the best player, yet still provide the beginner with a round that is not too disheartening. The front nine can be quite tough as there are back-to-back par fives running from the fourth. That run sees the only par fives on the card and there are no less than five par threes to look forward to, the best of the lot being the 17th, 'Y Deri' (The Oak Tree), at just 150 yards.
The Club was originally located by the nearby market town of Llandeilo. In 1967 the Club moved to its present location and became the Glynhir Golf Club. The course is located at the foot of the Black Mountain and in addition to this naturally beautiful landscape there is an abundance of wildlife, otters, badgers, foxes and a wide variety of birds including red kites, herons and buzzards, all of which combine to make a visit to the Glynhir Golf Club a memorable and enjoyable experience.
It presents a challenge to all golfers visiting Wales, whether single handicap or high handicap players. The fourteenth hole is a favourite of many members and visitors. The golf club is fortunate to have the services of an excellent P.G.A. Professional offering a full range of services and there is also a covered practice area.
GLYNHIR GOLF COURSE DETAILS
Date Founded: 1910
Rebuilt and relocated: 1967
Course Design: Charles Hawtree
Number of Holes: 18
Course Type: Parkland
Course Length: 6,026 yards
Par: 69 (men); 71 (ladies)
Professional: Mr. Richard Herbert
Club Joint Secretaries: Mr Dewi Davies & Mr Gerald Sadd.
Telephone: 01269 851365
Nearest Towns: Ammanford (2 miles) and Llandeilo (5 miles)
Playing Opening Times: Dawn till Dusk
Dress Code: Smart casual, no jeans
Clubhouse Hours: 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Open Competitions: Yes (check for details)
Green Fees (2008): Winter, 1st November - 31st March Mon - Fri: £12-00 Weekends: £15-00 Weekdays offer, round of golf & Chef''s special: £14-00. Weekend Early Bird offer (before 10.00am), round of golf & Chef's special: £17-00 . Summer, 1st April - 31st October Weekdays: £19-00 Weekends: £25-00 Monday Special: £12-00 Summer packages Midweek coffee on arrival, game of golf plus one-course meal: £22. Two-course meal: £25. Three-course meal: £28. Weekends: £28, £30 & £32 respectively.
Please note that information relating to green fees and the charges for other facilities are not guaranteed to be up-to-date. You should always check with the club for current prices. For the very latest fees etc click on Glynhir Golf Club.
Catering Facilities: open to non-members, every day except Monday.
Visitors Welcome: By arrangement. Contact Club in advance
Societies Welcome: Contact Club in advance
Facilities: Putting Green, Chipping Green, Club Hire, Trolley Hire, Bar, Restaurant
SCORECARD OF GREENS (WITH THEIR LOCAL NAMES)
Men Ladies Hole Welsh Name English Meaning Yards Par Yards Par 1 Gwyddfan Name of a local stream (Goose Place?) 341 4 291 4 2 Y Foel The Bald Hill 351 4 299 4 3 Cymerau Confluence 189 3 176 3 4 Glan-Nant Brookside 494 5 433 5 5 Llannerch The Glade 513 5 457 5 6 Y Garw The Rough One 165 3 131 3 7 Gwarallt Quarry Hill 394 4 345 4 8 Y Celyn The Holly 346 4 324 4 9 Y Gerddi The Gardens 202 3 178 3 Out 2995 35 2634 35 10 Lôn-Lâs Green Lane 354 4 302 4 11 Waun-Helig Willowfields 366 4 337 4 12 Creigiau Rocks 434 4 414 5 13 Y Gegin The Kitchen 160 3 135 3 14 Ceirios The Cherries 394 4 340 4 15 Llwchwr Name of the local river (Lake Water) 352 4 296 4 16 Y Cored The Weir Dam 375 4 337 4 17 Y Deri The Oak Tree 150 3 120 3 18 Glynhir The Long Valley 446 4 427 5 In 3031 34 2708 36 Total 6026 69 5342 71
The club has its own website which includes photographs of all the eighteen holes along with brief playing tips Glynhir Golf Club.
How to get to Glynhir Golf Club by road
M4 to Junction 48, Pont Abraham. Second turn off the roundabout to Ammanford. At 2nd set of traffic lights in Ammanford turn LEFT, travel approx one and a half miles. Turn RIGHT into GLYNHIR ROAD, travel approx one and a half miles. The Golf Course is on your RIGHT.
Nearby Hotels/Guest Houses
There are many local hotels and guest houses in the Llandeilo and Llandybie area catering for golf breaks and there are plenty of restaurants, pubs and places of interest to visit while you're here. Nearby Llandeilo and Ammanford have good local taxi services to ferry you around should you wish to take a tipple or two after the exertions of a round of golf. Or the nineteenth hole at the course will fulfill that need just as well.
Accommodation is available local to the golf club at the Mill at Glynhir and at Glynhir Mansion, both of which are literally a short walk away, and visitors are welcome. The golf course has a covered practice area, and changing rooms and showers are available for use by visitors. Other local attractions are the National Botanic Garden of Wales; Aberglasney House; Carreg Cennen Castle; Dinefwr Castle and Park; and the Gower Coast is only 40 minutes away.
Within a hundred yards walking distance from Glynhir Golf Club are:
The Mill at Glynhir: http://www.glynhir.co.uk/
Glynhir Mansion, bed and breakfast, self catering: http://www.theglynhirestate.com/
One mile from Glynhir Golf Club are:
Bryncoch Farm Bed and Breakfast: http://www.s-h-systems.co.uk/hotels/bryncoch.html
Pen-y-Banc Farm Guest House: http://www.golf.uk.net/news/local/117/894
Two miles from Glynhir Golf Club:
Ammanford Hotel, Pontamman, Ammanford
Seven miles from Glynhir Golf Club:
Plough Inn, Rhosmaen, Llandeilo:
Golf in Carmarthenshire
There are several golf course in the county of Carmarthenshire. Carmarthenshire County Council produces a leaflet in PDF format giving details of these. Click HERE to open the brochure in a new window, which may take a few moments to load.
Date this page last updated: October 1, 2010