Royal Birkdale Golf Club is one of the R&A's favorite venues to host their prized British championship, The Open. The 146th staging of The Open in 2017 comes back to this historic links in Southport, England. The 2017 event will mark the 10th time Birkdale has hosted the event (it was awarded the 1940 Open that was cancelled due to World War II), making it one of the most frequent choices, behind only the Old Course in St. Andrews. It's one of three ara links that are on the current rota, which also includes nearby Royal Lytham & St. Annes and Royal Liverpool.
The club was founded in 1889, but the current site for the links was plotted in 1894. The upgrading of the links by Fred Hawtree and J.H. Taylor is largely responsible for the layout it is today. It's one of the more recognizable open hosts if only for it's white, art deco clubhouse that was built in 1935. Also, Arnold Palmer has some remarkable history here. After falling short in his first Open in 1960 at St. Andrews, Palmer prevailed here in 1961, and in epic Palmer fashion. His final round was highlighted by a shot he played from a bush off the 16th fairway. A stone from the site of the shot commemorates the occasion to this day.
The most recent Open held at Birkdale was in 2008, which was won by Ireland's Padraig Harrington.