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Sean_A

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St Andrews EDEN COURSE: Heavy Sigh New
« on: July 03, 2016, 06:22:10 AM »
1930s Scorecard.




Because of the barbarous act I am hesitant to write a potted description of the changes to the Eden Course.  However, for the sake of clarity, I will outline the changes that were instigated by the need for a driving range and an area for a tented village during The Open.  In the early 1980s Donald Steel made the momentous changes to HS Coltís 1914 design and the immediate knock-on effect of the driving range meant that holes 1, 2, 17 & 18 were lost.  Looking at the land, these must have been mainly flat holes which would have required the then fairly inexperienced hand of Colt to fashion something worthwhile.  #s 8, 12 and 16 were also eliminated, though the situation with the current 6th and 12th is unclear.  I say this because in the original routing the 10th (which many believe is the current 6th) played over the tee of the original 8th.   It is clear that 8th hole no longer exists and that the current 6th & 12th run from the same general area in a westerly direction. The old 12th ran along the Eden Estuary in an easterly direction as did old 16 (with its reputedly wild green), but on the north side of the track.  Some thought these two holes were the biggest loss of the redesign.

True to form, it sounds like Colt built a masterful set of 3s which has been heavily compromised.  Indeed, the redesign has created a disjointed course which is probably better served by dropping 13-16 out of the loop; making for a grand 14 hole course.  Or, for those flush with cash, just walk in after the 9th and feel like you just played one of the best nine holers on the planet.

The original layout was around the London & North Eastern Railway. As was the case many times in the past, Colt called upon Franks, Harris Bros to build the course.  Perhaps the most respected site foreman in the UK, I believe Claude Harmon was entrusted with seeing the job come to fruition.




1.   Practice range replaces 1, 2, 17 & 18.
2.   The old 8th is eliminated. 
3.   The old 12th is eliminated.
4.   The old 16th is eliminated
5.   Steel builds at least five entirely new holes: 10, 14-17 and possibly 12.
6.   The current 12th may use the old 10 green or be an entirely new hole of Steelís design. The area for the 6th and 12th is unclear to me. 

Hole Order:
1.   Old 3rd green
2.   Old 4th
3.   Old 5th
4.   Old 6th
5.   Old 7th
6.   Old 10th green?
7.   Old 13th
8.   Old 14th
9.   Old 15th
10.   New par 3
11.   Old 9th
12.   New par 4?
13.   Old 11th
14.   New par 4
15.   New par 3
16.   New par 5
17.   New par 4
18.   New par 4 prior to Steelís redesign on other side of the tracks from the original par 3

A look at a Colt bunker on the NLE 12th.


Colt's sketch of the NLE 17th green.


Of all Harry Colt's projects The Eden had to be the greatest source of pride; being selected to design a course at the Home of Golf. There has been some speculation that because of the wild nature of some greens that Dr MacKenzie may have had a hand in the design of the Eden.  This conjecture is due to the idea that many didnít believe Colt designed such bold greens, but evidence shows that at the same time The Eden was built in 1914 that some of Coltís work at St Cloud in France, St Georges Hill in Surrey and a green or two at Sunningdale were very adventurous.  In fact, some of St Georges Hillís greens were softened not long after the course opened. 

The reputation for remarkable greens is immediately borne out on the first hole, a very short two- shotter.






On this day the 438 yard second was unreachable for me.  If one knew the course well the goal would simply be to obtain the best position to attack another interesting green.




While shorter than the second, the 3rd poses more problems with the Eden Estuary and The Old Course being OOB. 


One may feel a drink might be helpful when pondering this shot.


Yes, that is the 4th tee left of the green.


The breathtaking start to The Eden continues on the 4th, 5th, 6th....


Some may think the dangerous situation of the tee next to the green could be alleviated by shortening the hole to a par 3 length, but the 5th and 8th tees are just long and left of the green.


The green is surprisingly large and deep.


More to follow.

Ciao
« Last Edit: July 27, 2022, 07:40:38 AM by Sean_A »
New plays planned for 2022: Erewash, St Pats, The Loop x2, Arcadia Bluffs South, Lawsonia Links, Shoreacres, Culver Academies & Crystal Downs

Clyde Johnson

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Re: St Andrews EDEN COURSE: Heavy Sigh 1-4
« Reply #1 on: July 03, 2016, 08:22:27 AM »
Pretty sure that 6th (old 10th) is the original green Sean. Hard to imagine Steel building that lower-right pocket that doesn't surface drain anywhere. The previous green had a similar feature before they 'fixed' it a couple of winters back. So does the 7th on the high-left, just where you want to play safe.


Would love to see an old picture of the current fourth (and seventh), I sort of imagine the bank right of the green just blending away into the Eden Estuary.


Really wish they would blitz that bank behind the current thirteenth green, that blocks a decent view towards Guardbridge. There must be better places for a rubbish dump...!?




Sean_A

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Re: St Andrews EDEN COURSE: Heavy Sigh 1-4 New
« Reply #2 on: July 03, 2016, 09:03:46 AM »
Clyde

Yes, I am sure the green is original, but I wondered if it played from a different tee, likely not. 

13th?  Jeepers, I wish they would blow up that entire end of the course...it is horrendous as an add on to the Eden and only average modern architecture at best. 

The Eden Tour Cont.

The 5th shares a tee with the 8th, both short holes and wisely crossing as the angles make more sense.  I recall the green used to be a bit more elongated (and visible) at the front (perhaps beyond the bunker) and flowed directly into the raised 6th tee.  As can be seen, there is now a shaggy dune to the rear of the green so work must have been done on this green not too many years ago.  The right bunker doesn't fit the landscape as well as it might. 


The 6th features a green quite similar in look to Woking's 15th.




More to follow.

Ciao
« Last Edit: July 24, 2022, 07:06:42 AM by Sean_A »
New plays planned for 2022: Erewash, St Pats, The Loop x2, Arcadia Bluffs South, Lawsonia Links, Shoreacres, Culver Academies & Crystal Downs

Thomas Dai

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Re: St Andrews EDEN COURSE: Heavy Sigh 1-6
« Reply #3 on: July 03, 2016, 02:42:13 PM »
The mound short-right of the 4th green appears a cracking feature. It would appear to have quite a significant effect on the play of this hole. Is this the case?
Atb

Brian_Ewen

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Sean_A

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Re: St Andrews EDEN COURSE: Heavy Sigh 1-6 New
« Reply #5 on: July 05, 2016, 06:31:47 AM »
atb

Yes, the nose protruding from the green is cool; though it does kind of shutdown approaching from the right which seems strange given thats the danger side.  The entire hole screams come in from the left.  I wonder if the green was changed to make the footpath along the coast safer?

The Eden Tour Cont.

The very short par 4 seventh works back to the 4th green/5th tee.  If there ever was a layup hole without having to cross a hazard this is it as the dogleg follows the coast sharply left.  Below is a look at the approach from the coastal path.
 

As one can see, coming in from the left offers no hope of holding the green.
 

The very difficult 8th almost requires a grounder tee shot when played downwind, but even that ploy is not likely to yield good results.
 

 

The only real letdown hole on the front is the 9th, a par 5 with its green set behind a string of diagonal bunkers.  One redeeming aspect of the hole is the background of St Andrews. The 10th turns back toward the estuary and is a fine par 3, but it does stand out rather awkwardly.  The great golf returns for the 11th with its hidden peninsula green.   
 

 

There isn't anything particularly special about the 12th, but it is a handsome hole.
 

 

At this point, the 17th tee beckons to the left.  I suggest it is well worth skipping 13-16 in effort to get to the Himalayas for a quick 18  :-*  This four hole run has very little to recommend it.   Onto 17, other than the 10th, Eden's only good new hole.  The entire hole plays along the boundary line which was the old railway tracks.  Gorse and bunkers cover the bailout area left.  There is nothing for it other than to stand tall and make a sure swing.






The home hole isn't without interest for its short length, though I do wonder if this wouldn't be better as a par 3. 


It is disgraceful that the Links Trust would carve up a Colt original at the Home of Golf without ensuring the integrity of the design was preserved with new holes more in keeping with Colt's vision.  The Steel revisions to The Eden are not only mediocre design, but they are completely out of step with the original holes.  However, there is enough excellent Colt work remaining to enjoy a quick round of 14 or 9 holes, for that is surely all the time this course is worth, but what a 14 or 9 holes!  2016

Ciao 
« Last Edit: July 24, 2022, 11:05:11 AM by Sean_A »
New plays planned for 2022: Erewash, St Pats, The Loop x2, Arcadia Bluffs South, Lawsonia Links, Shoreacres, Culver Academies & Crystal Downs

Niall C

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Re: St Andrews EDEN COURSE: Heavy Sigh
« Reply #6 on: July 05, 2016, 10:49:04 AM »
sorry, wrong thread
« Last Edit: July 05, 2016, 10:50:43 AM by Niall C »

Frank Pont

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Re: St Andrews EDEN COURSE: Heavy Sigh
« Reply #7 on: July 05, 2016, 04:04:23 PM »
Sean, I could not have said it better, I have been disgusted by what happened to the Eden ever since I first saw it 15 years ago....

Ben Malach

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Re: St Andrews EDEN COURSE: Heavy Sigh
« Reply #8 on: July 05, 2016, 05:36:06 PM »
I feel that the loss of the original Eden is a loss on par with that of the Lido. As for the new holes I think the worst offenders are those around the pond. I personally think 16,17,18 are good holes that are overshadowed by how good the Colt holes are.
@benmalach on Instagram and Twitter

Marty Bonnar

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Re: St Andrews EDEN COURSE: Heavy Sigh
« Reply #9 on: July 05, 2016, 06:36:52 PM »
What's particularly egregious it's the fact that they don't even use the new driving range for competitions. It's too short for the flat-bellies (©Sean_A 2016), so they make a range on 1/18 of the Jubilee.
 >:(
F.
Assembled in Michigan from foreign parts.

Paul_Turner

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Re: St Andrews EDEN COURSE: Heavy Sigh
« Reply #10 on: July 05, 2016, 07:51:15 PM »
In addition to Steel's horrible holes it looks like Hawtree bodged the 5th green:  the right green side bunker was a real pit before with a big facing mound and the green's false front just looks softer.  The whole right side of the green is lower now??
« Last Edit: July 05, 2016, 07:55:10 PM by Paul_Turner »
can't get to heaven with a three chord song

Paul_Turner

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Re: St Andrews EDEN COURSE: Heavy Sigh
« Reply #11 on: July 05, 2016, 08:32:04 PM »
5th green in 2001 (Photo Credit Jeroen Pitt).





How's it compare now?  From Sean's photo it looks like a straight false front with little to none of the "shoulder" on the right side.
« Last Edit: July 05, 2016, 08:33:38 PM by Paul_Turner »
can't get to heaven with a three chord song

Clyde Johnson

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Re: St Andrews EDEN COURSE: Heavy Sigh
« Reply #12 on: July 06, 2016, 07:12:27 AM »

Sean: No kidding indeed, although I think i'd be on a very long list of those wanting a go at fixing the Eden. Hawtree was out a couple of weeks back, looking at changes to the 15th fairway on the Jubilee this winter...maybe they will get around to 'tweaking' it one day.

Paul: It's basically a straightaway two tier green, with the rear section falling away, and from left-to-right. I'm not sure how often they pinned it on the front before, but it is nearly always on the back whenever I play.





« Last Edit: July 06, 2016, 05:18:49 PM by Clyde Johnson »

Jon Wiggett

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Re: St Andrews EDEN COURSE: Heavy Sigh
« Reply #13 on: July 06, 2016, 05:17:04 PM »
What's particularly egregious it's the fact that they don't even use the new driving range for competitions. It's too short for the flat-bellies (©Sean_A 2016), so they make a range on 1/18 of the Jubilee.
 >:(
F.


Marty,


even worse is there is plenty of land available that they didn't need to touch the Eden Course.


Jon

Ryan Coles

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Re: St Andrews EDEN COURSE: Heavy Sigh
« Reply #14 on: July 06, 2016, 05:28:14 PM »
One plus point for the links trust amongst all the doom and gloom. I think they maintain their courses superbly and provide firm true links conditions right through the year particularly on the so called lesser courses.

Jon Wiggett

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Re: St Andrews EDEN COURSE: Heavy Sigh
« Reply #15 on: July 06, 2016, 05:38:11 PM »
One plus point for the links trust amongst all the doom and gloom. I think they maintain their courses superbly and provide firm true links conditions right through the year particularly on the so called lesser courses.


Ryan,


I would wholeheartedly agree with you about the conditions on the courses especially given the traffic they get but I think you will find that the people responsible for the great conditions to found on all the courses are not the same as those responsible for the decision taken on the practice facility. It certainly is not a mitigating factor in my book.


Jon

Mike Hendren

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Re: St Andrews EDEN COURSE: Heavy Sigh
« Reply #16 on: July 06, 2016, 05:40:00 PM »
The only redeeming quality of this thread is the return of Paul Turner, who has undoubtedly been "loitering with intent" since I last saw him at Sand Hills a dozen years ago. 

The new 5th makes me want to turn east and unclog my nose in the general direction of the Links Trust.  To stand on the 5th or 8th tee and admire the juxtaposition between a green sited on a dune and one sited within the same dune yards away with the town as a backdrop is as good as it gets for me.  Perhaps my favorite place in the world of golf architecture.  The new work only adds insult to injury.

Boo. Hiss. Catcall.
« Last Edit: July 06, 2016, 05:42:04 PM by Michael H »
Two Corinthians walk into a bar ....

Bill_McBride

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Re: St Andrews EDEN COURSE: Heavy Sigh
« Reply #17 on: July 06, 2016, 09:59:43 PM »
The only redeeming quality of this thread is the return of Paul Turner, who has undoubtedly been "loitering with intent" since I last saw him at Sand Hills a dozen years ago. 

The new 5th makes me want to turn east and unclog my nose in the general direction of the Links Trust.  To stand on the 5th or 8th tee and admire the juxtaposition between a green sited on a dune and one sited within the same dune yards away with the town as a backdrop is as good as it gets for me.  Perhaps my favorite place in the world of golf architecture.  The new work only adds insult to injury.

Boo. Hiss. Catcall.


Those holes around the pond are just bloody awful. 


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