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Sunday
Feb122017

Proposal Made To Restore Musselburgh Links "To Former Glory"

Avril Campbell reports that an Edinburgh-based company has approached the East Lothian Council with a £10 million plan to restore Musselburgh's Old Course, six-time Open Championship host and arguably as important as any course in the development of golf. 

Campbell writes:

Blue Thistle Ltd, the Courier has learned, has approached council members to discuss “a bold and exciting proposition” which would see the nine-hole, par-34 course “regenerated, restored and recreated to the style and reputation of its former glory”.

East Lothian Council says it is “aware of a commercial desire” to “take over” the course.

A Blue Thistle Ltd spokesman said it hoped to capture the heritage of the course and “broadcast” it to a global audience. It wants to return the course to its 1896 set-up, with lost features recreated and placed in new positions.

He said: “This will challenge the modern golfer as well as the traditionalist who likes to play with hickory-shafted clubs. Some new tees and greens will be built. A course with the quality of an Open Championship venue is the goal.”

One councillor, John Caldwell, is already “vigorously” opposed to the plan. However, given that the course has been in danger from elimination, has been neglected at times and has recently seen plans approved that will alter the historic Mrs. Forman's, the plan should be considered.

Most of you know I think this is one of the great places in the game and a model for the kind of intimate community golf we need more of. Oh, and it's an immensely important place in the history of our sport and the golf business.

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Reader Comments (12)

As long as they also preserve the Ale House on #4 too, I'm happy! Played there several years ago. Ratty condition but it sure was a grin...
02.13.2017 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan
If we lose the old great traditional courses how will our grandchildren understand the meaning of golf and more so Golf Course Architecture.

I never understand why those in power refuse to act upon issues that cause these problems, yet feel no guilt in forcing clubs to change their courses.

Lack of interest or understand by the majority of today's players has allowed others to do as they wish to our game and our courses.

When will Players and Golfers alike, take note that Golf and our old golf courses are worth fighting for?
02.13.2017 | Unregistered CommenterTom Morris
I like the fact that it could be a great course for hickory play.
02.13.2017 | Unregistered CommenterHardy Greaves
I played at Musselburgh in Sep of 2016 and Mrs. Formans is already closed and the building is under construction.
02.13.2017 | Unregistered CommenterWayne
Councils dont appear to give a damn about golf. We have one of the oldest courses here in Perth but the council were all set on closing it as it was" losing money". It now has new management and is thriving. Preserving Musselburgh for hickory golf sounds a great plan.
02.13.2017 | Unregistered Commenterchico
I have played the old links twice with hickories. Every golfer should have the privilege.
02.13.2017 | Unregistered CommenterCarson Pilcher
Wait, what? 10 million pounds for a restoration of a nine-hole course??? Are they installing subair on the entire acreage?
02.13.2017 | Unregistered CommenterKS
It sure sounds like a 10 mil plan is too much money; but it needs to be renovated, and the hickory idea is great.
02.13.2017 | Unregistered Commenterdigsouth
@chico

Just found a few course maps of North Inch course around the time of OTM's modifications - sent them to the club who seem very happy to have them. Also we stopped the bridge development a couple of years ago - and yes, the course has a future.
,
These thing happened because WE (the Golfers) made our voice heard, its something we need to do more often, but apathy in the end is our greatest enemy as it is born from within the golfing community itself. To prove my point, just look at todays game and course design, its changed more than many of our old courses and will continue to do so unless we the Golfers show some balls and stand up for the Royal & Ancient Game of Golf.

The point is we can do it, we can achieve many things if we had a strong single voice. The Councils will take note if faced with a strong argument to keep these places open.
02.13.2017 | Unregistered CommenterTom Morris
"...a model for the kind of intimate community golf we need more of."

What kind of model is it? the kind nobody apparantly wants to play, or at least pay for playing? If this thing was valuable as a golf course, it would be making money. Restore it as a museum, sure. But please, don't tell me restoring this is going to generate green fees from players. Its a white elephant.
02.13.2017 | Unregistered CommenterHerb
Tom Morris-

you get the 10 million pounds from the council, and i'll pay for the cart paths.

Al
02.13.2017 | Unregistered Commenterczervik
@Herb

At least it’s a genuine 'White Elephant' - not fake!

Its also part of the history of the game.
02.13.2017 | Unregistered CommenterTom Morris

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