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Sean_A

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WESTWARD HO!: 2018-19 Winter Tour New
« on: October 22, 2018, 08:41:18 AM »


Somewhat similar to Prestwick's evolution, Westward Ho!, or more properly, Royal North Devon GC, had its day in the sun over 85 years ago.  Although, much to the consternation of Herbert Fowler, RNDís light never shone so bright as at Prestwick for it never held an Open.  Yet, three Amateurs were contested over the common land known as Northam Burrows.  The first, held in 1912, was fittingly won by the immortal John Ball of Hoylake...his eighth and final victory coming at over 50 years of age.  Who knows, if not for WWI perhaps Mr Ball might have won another Amateur.  The run of RNDís Amateurís was over all too quick for the last was hosted in 1931. 

John Ball, 1913.


Westward Ho! is steeped in the history of English golf as it was the first golf club to be founded by Englishmen, the first links built in England and the oldest course in England still playing over the original site.

RND was one of approximately 15 English clubs founded up to 1879. The 1880s saw the English game push on with approximately 100 clubs existing by 1889. Even up to the advent of WWI, which encompassed the English golf boom, RND was a bit unusual in being an 18 hole links. By 1914 it is thought 85% of English courses were parkland and 78% started as 9 holers!

In recent years the course seems to be much maligned and this despite possessing one of the best front nines in the country.  However, when the club was founded in 1864 and after Old Tom Morris worked his magic in that same year and later in 1887, the course was deemed suitable by the PGA to host an Open.  Why this never happened remains unclear.

With the coming of the Haskell in 1902 Herbert Fowler was called in to toughen the examination.  When reading Hutchinson's tome, British Golf Links (1897), it is clear Fowler made radical alterations to the course including the addition of signifcant length.  Over the past 90 years the course has remained largely as Fowler left it.  Hence the shock among the old guard when the club announced a new three hole plan in response to the alarming erosion due to battering winter storms.  The club has approved a design by T Mckenzie which will include new holes for 7, 8 and 9.  The new 7th will follow the current corridor, but instead of legging left over the rushes, the hole will carry on to a green forward and right of the current 8th tees.  The 8th will play over the high ground above the current 8th green...away from Bideford Bay.  The new 9th will play over low ground, reconnect with the current 9th fairway as a dogleg left and use the same green.  Work is expected to begin in May 2019 with the holes put in play when necessary.   

Westward Ho! has the distinction of not only having two of the finest names in architecture associated with the club, but also for producing two sons which were supreme golfers; Horace Hutchinson and JH Taylor.  Hutchinson first came to prominence when at the sweet age of 16 he won the Silver Medal and thus became the Club Captain.  There being no rules about such matters, HH dutifully took the Chairís seat and presided over the General Meeting.  The rule was changed the following year to preclude such youthful influence in the future. 

Perhaps unfairly known today mainly as a student, teacher, author and all round servant of the game, Mr Hutchinson was a fine golfer who won back to back Amateurs in 1886-87.  The defence of his title required a win in the final over the great John Ball...at Ballís home course...Hoylake. 

Horace Hutchinson, Vanity Fair, 19.07.1890.


Golf can make strange bed fellows and in the case of one house boy working with the Hutchinson family it certainly did.  Coming home from Oxford during the summers etc Hutchinson would employ this house boy, one JH Taylor, as a caddie.  JH would eventually graduate to the green keeping staff as he learned the game and learn he did.  It was very fortunate for the game of golf that the military refused to enlist JH due to poor eye sight; quite ironic for a man with the reputation of straight hitting.  After beating Andrew Kirkaldy in the Challenge Match Play it was clear that JH was destined to win on the big stage.  Four years later, in 1894, JH won the first of five Opens.  Like the other members (H Vardon & J Braid) of the Great Triumvirate, Taylor was a golf all-rounder who was skilled at many aspects of the game.  When the British professionals organized they looked to Taylor to help found and chair the British PGA in 1901.  It was also JH who captained the 1933 Ryder Cup team to victory, the only Captain from either side which never played in the matches.  Golf is truly a blessed game when a man of such humble origins can rise to the greatest heights.

JH Tayor, 1912.


The map of the course as it was after the house was moved to its present location.  Place names such as Goosey Pool (was there swimming in this water?) and Inland Sea no longer seem to exist.  Although, there is a bit of a marsh near where Goosey Pool was located.


The Old Tom Morris design placed the rather functional clubhouse near the Pebble Ridge which necessitated a rather long walk to the burrows.  In 1888 it was decided to build the current house above the links.  As is often the case, changes beget changes.  To play from the new house, it was necessary to bookend the links with four new holes: 1, 2, 17 & 18.  These are difficult, but comparatively dull holes.  It is unclear who designed these holes over flat, heavy turf, but one gets the impression the goal was to enter and exit the proper holes quickly and with a minimal amount of fuss.  Moving to the third, the course turns right and plays along the Pebble Ridge.  While the opening two holes are fairly wide, they are framed by ditches and what seem like mini-rushes. 


The opener looking back at the house.


#1 is a reachable three-shotter.


Standing on the third tee, it is the lack of definition which is disquieting for some.  Perhaps it is this freedom which has placed Westward Ho! at odds with the modern golfer. 




More to follow.

Ciao
« Last Edit: July 26, 2022, 07:43:47 PM by Sean_A »
New plays planned for 2022:

John Mayhugh

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: WESTWARD HO!: 2018-19 Winter Tour 1-3
« Reply #1 on: October 22, 2018, 01:12:26 PM »
Looking forward to this, Sean.
I agree that the best of the course is bookended by lesser holes, but still enjoyed those. The first is reachable, but a layup is complicated by the diagonal hazard and the lack of definition.

Lou_Duran

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: WESTWARD HO!: 2018-19 Winter Tour 1-3
« Reply #2 on: October 22, 2018, 03:53:01 PM »
Four of us played in an open Stableford years ago around a Buda.  We stared great witch couple of birdies on #1 then proceeded steeply downhill thereafter.  The course is a mixed bag, flat with some interesting features and an equal number of nuisances, but I am very happy for the experience.  We did the two or three course dinner option which was what the doctor ordered after a long round.  I got a kick out of the locker room and the several well-dressed men visiting the club.  The societies were present in force, donning their bright colored garb and carrying on with gusto.  Quite a social experience, boisterous but not football (soccer) obnoxious.   We had a very enjoyable day.

Tommy Williamsen

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: WESTWARD HO!: 2018-19 Winter Tour 1-3
« Reply #3 on: October 22, 2018, 04:28:43 PM »
For years I had an overseas membership. I loved the course because it is so different from anything I had ever played, including GB&I links courses. The first hole is over some heavy earth but the design is wonderful. Starting with number three The course just gets better. I know Sean doesn't care for the great sea rushes but they are distinctive to RND. Four through ten are nothing less than stupendous. Five, six, and nine are three of my favorite holes anywhere.
Where there is no love, put love; there you will find love.
St. John of the Cross

"Deep within your soul-space is a magnificent cathedral where you are sweet beyond telling." Rumi

Sean_A

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: WESTWARD HO!: 2018-19 Winter Tour 1-3 New
« Reply #4 on: October 23, 2018, 05:43:20 AM »
Looking forward to this, Sean.
I agree that the best of the course is bookended by lesser holes, but still enjoyed those. The first is reachable, but a layup is complicated by the diagonal hazard and the lack of definition.

Tucky

Yes, the opener is complicated by the water at an excellent distance shy of the green.  The second is probably the least engaging on the course.

Westward Ho! Tour Cont.

H Rountree Watercolour.


Wills Cigarettes Card 1924


Back of the card.


The 4th, or Cape, so named for the hulking sleepered bunker, looks as if it has been there since time immemorial.  However, the Cape Bunker was once far larger, stretching some 40 or more yards toward the tee as an intricate maze of sand culminating in a high carry.


Cape looks more formidable from fairway level.




Back in the day, this photo must be about 100 years ago and demonstrates the far more complex bunker Cape once was.


Another old photo from the 1912 Amateur, won by John Ball over Abe Mitchell on the 38th hole.


There is much hoopla concerning Cape, but with modern equipment reducing its impact, the second shot is where Westward Ho! begins to delight.


The excellent short 5th turns against the flow of the front nine and requires a fairly precise aerial shot. 




Certainly a candidate for the favourite hole of many, the 6th is a wild landscape of boundless width and beauty.  This is the only hole where Bideford Bay is on display.  Across the River Taw, Saunton Sands can clearly be seen.  Athough, I suspect views will be available from the new 8th and new 9th tee.

P Dickenson's sketch.




It seems a pity to disturb the exquisite landscape with features such as bunkers. 


The great and ill defined golf continues on the 7th.  A right bunker can be seen, but another down the left on the short-cut to the green is blind.  The sea rushes make a quick appearance, as if to foreshadow what is to come.   Being common land, the parishioners of Northam have the right to graze their sheep and horses on the land.  In recent years an agreement has been reached which limits the number of grazing animals.
 



There is a blind bunker for those who wind up in the rushes...after a loose drive.


At this point we are hard on the pebble ridge and can see the damage of winter storms to the 8th tee....it has practically disappeared.  In days gone by there was a group of housholder parshioners known as potwallopers.  The test of a householder was having a separate fireplace for cooking.  Potwallopers had the right to graze their animals on the common in exchange for throwing pebbles washed up to the burrows from high tides and winter storms back onto the ridge.  Not long after 1900 the practice became sporadic before it was eventually banned in 2008 by Natural England. 

www.youtube.com/watch?v=-m5ZuFumaFs

More to follow.

Ciao
« Last Edit: August 07, 2021, 04:19:33 AM by Sean_A »
New plays planned for 2022:

Thomas Dai

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: WESTWARD HO!: 2018-19 Winter Tour 1-7
« Reply #5 on: October 24, 2018, 03:15:51 PM »
A local give me a piece of essential advice on playing this imo wonderful course - ďwhatever you do, donít touch the tips of the extremely spikey sea rushes!!Ē.


As to the course itself, despite the flatness of the terrain the 1st and 2nd, particularly the 2nd, are not the easiest of starts given that the prevailing wind is against and from the left. The upturned saucer green on the 2nd is not the easiest to hit and hold either, and there are a few more similar type greens to come later on in the round.
As to the 3rd, the road in front of the tee can be a pain, waiting for the traffic at busy times etc. Super greensite though.
And the 4th, when played into the wind, requires a damn good thump from the tee to carry the Cape, which is much higher than it appears in photos.
On the par-3 5th, the prevailing wind comes up and over the dune behind the green and as such a Ďfloating flightí on the tee shot may not result in the hoped for outcome.
Kickplates on the left side of both the 6th and 7th greens are features that can be used to the players advantage and some hidden from view bunkers need to be negotiated in getting to the greens, as do some of the painful spikey rushes on the 7th.
Atb




Ally Mcintosh

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: WESTWARD HO!: 2018-19 Winter Tour 1-7
« Reply #6 on: October 24, 2018, 04:02:17 PM »
Are they astroturf bunkers? The idea seems somewhat at odds with the courseís standing.

Adam Lawrence

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: WESTWARD HO!: 2018-19 Winter Tour 1-7
« Reply #7 on: October 24, 2018, 05:23:30 PM »
There are some, and they're very badly built. The top layer of natural turf has eroded, leaving the artificial turf in clear view, and they look crap
Adam Lawrence

Editor, Golf Course Architecture
www.golfcoursearchitecture.net

Principal, Oxford Golf Consulting
www.oxfordgolfconsulting.com

Short words are best, and the old words, when short, are the best of all.

Thomas Dai

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: WESTWARD HO!: 2018-19 Winter Tour 1-7
« Reply #8 on: October 25, 2018, 02:13:32 PM »
There are several sorts of bunker faces at WHo!: sleepered, riveted, grassed, and indeed astro. There are also a few native sandy areas/pits.
As was explained to the GCA'ers present on this trip, the use of astro is to limit/alleviate the damage to the bunker faces caused by the hoofs of the horses and sheep that graze the course (as is also the case at some other grazed courses where it's used, like Southerndown and Pennard).
As mentioned above, the tie-in between the astro and the grass is a problem area but the club are experimenting with different methods to try to improve the tie-ins. Time and experience will tell I imagine.
As to the faces themselves, once they've become a little discoloured they become a bit less obvious to the eye.
Overall whilst I'm not a massive fan I am prepared to give them a chance to prove/disprove themselves where the grazing animal issue is a factor.

atb

Sean_A

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: WESTWARD HO!: 2018-19 Winter Tour 1-7 New
« Reply #9 on: October 26, 2018, 05:42:15 AM »
WESTWARD HO! CONT

It isn't expected that the 8th will last much longer and as a consequence it is likely to be the first hole replaced. It isn't a bad hole by any means, but not one worth lamentations.  Indeed, the new 8th could well be a better hole.  The turbines are definitely a new addition to the skyline  :'(


Turning away from Bideford Bay and five holes essentially playing north, the 9th could well be the best hole on the course.  Legging left, this short par 5 teases its way through the rushes and is certainly reachable in two, but there is a string of bunkers protecting all but the far right side of the green.  On this day, the hole location was kind!  I must be honest in not recalling the three bunkers, my memory conjurs up but one bunker.  In any case, when the work is complete, there will be one greenside bunker and one short right to cut-off the flanking approach.




Now truly amidst the rushes, the 10th is not the hole of terrors I remember. There is much more space than my memory allows and the rushes seem lower.  So much for memory!  Anyway, I think the 10th is a high quality hole which is more influenced by the many fairway mounds and severe dogleg left angle than by the rushes.  Needless to say, it is a busy hole!  More exacting to my mind's eye, the 11th is a more demanding drive over and between the rushes.  The green too is well protected by sand.
   

Breaking free from the rushes, the 12th doesn't look as if there is much room, but one can practically hit the ball anywhere except for left.  However, if the wind is up, there is a single well placed bunker which guards the right side well short of the green.  The 13th should be called plains...was there ever a flatter hole built?  However, as is the case a few times when playing lengthy holes over the flat, the green is a beautiful surprise.  Perhaps more incredible is how the design hides the raised green until one is quite close.  I won't say this is the best hole, but it may win the most clever prize. 
   

More to follow.

Ciao
« Last Edit: April 13, 2020, 03:05:45 AM by Sean_A »
New plays planned for 2022:

Ben Stephens

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: WESTWARD HO!: 2018-19 Winter Tour 1-13
« Reply #10 on: October 26, 2018, 11:30:57 AM »
I like the course however the current state of the bunkers let it down. The majority of the course is rustic however the bunkering is far too artificial for my liking on this particular strip of land.


Here is another version (quick rough outline) of the cape which is more eye-catching/natural than the slippered version



Thomas Dai

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: WESTWARD HO!: 2018-19 Winter Tour 1-13
« Reply #11 on: October 26, 2018, 03:39:32 PM »

Perhaps I'm unusual in this respect but I rather like the generally flatter holes that play over and through the sea rushes. A different sort of golf to the norm, thus maybe needing a different mind-set, but still plenty of merit imo, especially when the holes have challenging green sites like the 9th, 10th, 11th and 12th do. As to the 13th, it may be a dead flat fairway, take care with the crossing bunkers into the wind though, but the green and the deception before and around it are wonderfully cunning and rascally.

As to the 4th hole, here's the Cape bunker as it once was -

Not sure of the date of the above photos but it sure isn't that recent!


And below, two more photos of the splendid 13th green. The first photos also shows the 14th and 5th greens. The second photo shows the degree of right side slope.


atb
« Last Edit: October 29, 2018, 10:05:52 AM by Thomas Dai »

Tommy Williamsen

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: WESTWARD HO!: 2018-19 Winter Tour 1-13
« Reply #12 on: October 26, 2018, 05:37:01 PM »
It has been eight or nine years since I last played RND. The change to number eight is stunning. It wasn't a great hole but I found it difficult to hit the green from the back tee. The bunkering on the hole was pretty good, but I think I won't miss the old one when it is redesigned.
Where there is no love, put love; there you will find love.
St. John of the Cross

"Deep within your soul-space is a magnificent cathedral where you are sweet beyond telling." Rumi

Tommy Williamsen

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: WESTWARD HO!: 2018-19 Winter Tour 1-13
« Reply #13 on: October 26, 2018, 06:06:06 PM »
I like the course however the current state of the bunkers let it down. The majority of the course is rustic however the bunkering is far too artificial for my liking on this particular strip of land.


Here is another version (quick rough outline) of the cape which is more eye-catching/natural than the slippered version





It is better looking, but given where it is, it would be a nightmare to keep up after a wind/rain event.
Where there is no love, put love; there you will find love.
St. John of the Cross

"Deep within your soul-space is a magnificent cathedral where you are sweet beyond telling." Rumi

Ally Mcintosh

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: WESTWARD HO!: 2018-19 Winter Tour 1-13
« Reply #14 on: October 27, 2018, 04:21:06 AM »
I like the course however the current state of the bunkers let it down. The majority of the course is rustic however the bunkering is far too artificial for my liking on this particular strip of land.


Here is another version (quick rough outline) of the cape which is more eye-catching/natural than the slippered version





It is better looking, but given where it is, it would be a nightmare to keep up after a wind/rain event.


Iím not sure Iíll agree with Tommy on this one. Thereís something austere, imposing and fitting about the sleeper backed monster. I like it.


Thatís not to say I wouldnít like some natural edges, just not ones that have to be maintained and manicured the whole time. Natural edges disappeared from many links courses because they changed over time (through the weather) past the point of maintenance. So another solution was made to keep maintenance low. Thatís the way it should be now. Other than sand maintenance, bunkers on links courses should be allowed to change with the weather. Thereís nothing less natural looking than an over-designed or maintained ďnaturalĒ bunker.

Thomas Dai

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: WESTWARD HO!: 2018-19 Winter Tour 1-13
« Reply #15 on: October 27, 2018, 07:19:09 AM »
Surely the sleepers are there to stabilise the sand and alleviate/minimise maintenance issues? No sleepers and the shape of the terrain would be rather different? Sleepers are fine by me. In fact, Iíd be happy to see more of them on sandy terrain courses.
Atb

Niall C

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: WESTWARD HO!: 2018-19 Winter Tour 1-7
« Reply #16 on: October 27, 2018, 09:54:12 AM »
There are several sorts of bunker faces at WHo!: sleepered, riveted, grassed, and indeed astro. There are also a few native sandy areas/pits.
As was explained to the GCA'ers present on this trip, the use of astro is to limit/alleviate the damage to the bunker faces caused by the hoofs of the horses and sheep that graze the course (as is also the case at some other grazed courses where it's used, like Southerndown and Pennard).
As mentioned above, the tie-in between the astro and the grass is a problem area but the club are experimenting with different methods to try to improve the tie-ins. Time and experience will tell I imagine.
As to the faces themselves, once they've become a little discoloured they become a bit less obvious to the eye.
Overall whilst I'm not a massive fan I am prepared to give them a chance to prove/disprove themselves where the grazing animal issue is a factor.

atb

David

It's fair to say that Mark, the general manager, wasn't a huge fan of them but recognised that needs must. He also offered that some of them had been built too steeply and would be rebuilt in due course. All in all a practical and pragmatic response to what is obviously an issue for them.

Niall

Niall C

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: WESTWARD HO!: 2018-19 Winter Tour 1-13
« Reply #17 on: October 27, 2018, 10:02:02 AM »

Perhaps I'm unusual in this respect but I rather like the generally flatter holes that play over and through the sea rushes. A different sort of golf to the norm, thus maybe needing a different mind-set, but still plenty of merit imo, especially when the holes have challenging green sites like the 9th, 10th, 11th and 12th do. As to the 13th, it may be a dead flat fairway, take care with the crossing bunkers into the wind though, but the green and the deception before and around it are wonderfully cunning and rascally.

As to the 4th hole, here's the Cape bunker as it once was -

Not sure of the date but it sure isn't that recent!
atb

What this shows is there was a bunker before the bunker that is there now. I'm not sure if that is what Ben is trying to recreate but in terms of the face of the bunker, I'm perfectly happy with the sleepers that have been there for ever. They are a landmark of the course and to change would be like replacing the clock faces on Big Ben with a digital clock.

I also tend to think a lot of these new frilly edged bunkers are a bit insipid. They often look as though layers of turf have been draped over the face of the bunker rather than eroded faces or the appearance of chunks have been gouged out of the turf.

Niall

Sean_A

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: WESTWARD HO!: 2018-19 Winter Tour 1-13
« Reply #18 on: October 28, 2018, 05:44:32 AM »
WESTWARD HO! CONT

The short 14th.


Turning toward home and despite rushes lurking left and right, the 15th offers an abundance of space to drive the ball. It is the approach over/between three bunkers which is elemental.  I have seen an old photo of 15 showcasing a massive bunker.  It is conceivable the low gound right and shy of the green used to house this bunker. Or, it is possible the 15th is in a completely different location. 


The approach.


The short 16th plays more difficult than its yardage suggests.  The hole is cut in a superlative position for which only fools or great golfers should take on.  A pair of bunkers, one being blind to the rear, collude with excellent green shaping to create a devious hole.  To top it off, the plateau green (yet the hole is called Punch Bowl!) is somehow disguised, perhaps the rushes and/or Cape prevent the golfer from getting the full picture.  This is also our last chance to see the striking terrain along the pebble ridge.


More to follow.

Ciao
« Last Edit: October 28, 2018, 05:52:36 AM by Sean_A »
New plays planned for 2022:

Thomas Dai

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: WESTWARD HO!: 2018-19 Winter Tour 1-16
« Reply #19 on: October 28, 2018, 09:16:40 AM »
Thereís a lovely raised spine running all along the length of the right side of the 14th green with what seems pin-able putting surface to the right of it. Nasty looking spot.
On the 15th thereís a tall marker sign to the right that seems to be indicating the direction off the tee. Maybe it does for a bomber but for mere mortals aiming way, way left is much more preferable. Itís also a green, and there are a few at RND/WHo!, where a chip or pitch from behind the green is easier than from short of the green so taking plenty of club wth the approach shot ought to be advantageous.
As to the 16th, itís a right sneaky/evil little par-3, usually downwind and off the left. Fine hole. Short should have some evil to them!
I suspect that the sandy gulch in the old photo of the 15th, as posted above, might well be an extension of the sandy gulch that once stretched right across the 4th (but quite a distance in front of the Cape).
Atb

Niall C

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: WESTWARD HO!: 2018-19 Winter Tour 1-16
« Reply #20 on: October 28, 2018, 09:53:20 AM »
Sean

I love the old photos. How much more interesting those holes would be if they reinstated those bunker/waste areas. Considering the course is still grazed, it does make you wonder why they aren't still like that ? I was under the impression that one of the reasons why there was less sandy waste areas on courses these days was because they were no longer grazed but maybe that's not the case.

David

On reflection I think you are right about the inward holes and that there is probably a good bit more to them than you appreciate on first hit. It also occurs to me that if they are losing the par 3 due to erosion, that rather than trying to fit another one in there and adapting the next hole (9th?) to suit, that they would be better trying to fit a par 3 in somewhere at the far end where the inland holes are (11th/12th ?).

Niall

John Mayhugh

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: WESTWARD HO!: 2018-19 Winter Tour 1-7
« Reply #21 on: October 28, 2018, 02:41:28 PM »
The 13th should be called plains...was there ever a flatter hole built?  However, as is the case a few times when playing lengthy holes over the flat, the green is beautiful surprise.  Perhaps more incredible is how the design hides the raised green until quite close.  I won't say this is the best hole, but it may win the prize for most clever. 
   
This photo of the 13th is fantastic. I took loads of them, but what a difference better light (and likely a better eye) makes.

Tommy Williamsen

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: WESTWARD HO!: 2018-19 Winter Tour 1-16
« Reply #22 on: October 28, 2018, 08:59:05 PM »
Sean, is 13 still a par five? I thought it made an interesting par five. The yardage would warrant a par four but the green is so clever and difficult to hit or even chip to, I made many moire fives than fours.
Where there is no love, put love; there you will find love.
St. John of the Cross

"Deep within your soul-space is a magnificent cathedral where you are sweet beyond telling." Rumi

Tommy Williamsen

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: WESTWARD HO!: 2018-19 Winter Tour 1-16
« Reply #23 on: October 28, 2018, 09:08:06 PM »
Looking at the visualization on the RND website, it looks as though they are changing the green on nine.


https://www.royalnorthdevongolfclub.co.uk/course/course-changes-7th-8th-and-9th
« Last Edit: October 28, 2018, 09:16:45 PM by Tommy Williamsen »
Where there is no love, put love; there you will find love.
St. John of the Cross

"Deep within your soul-space is a magnificent cathedral where you are sweet beyond telling." Rumi

Ally Mcintosh

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: WESTWARD HO!: 2018-19 Winter Tour 1-16
« Reply #24 on: October 29, 2018, 03:25:58 AM »
Tommy,


That was the original plan. Although I heard that they had second thoughts, partially to do with the number of comments they had about how great a green it was. Iím disappointed I couldnít make this trip with Sean, Robin, Adam, Niall and David. I am convinced that Westward Ho! would be my type of course.


Primarily for my own satisfaction, I might also clarify what I meant by the natural bunker comment earlier: I love rough edged blow-out style bunkers on links courses. But the natural evolution of such blow-outs means that they will change shape over time. The easiest and best way to stop that erosion is to shore up all or part of the bunker (by sod or sleepers). Almost by definition, bunker bays are eroded / wind blown more than noses. So a partial shore-up could mean building sod in to some eroded bays whilst leaving the noses rough edged. Think Castle Stuart.


So when we talk about natural bunkers on links courses, the most natural are those where nothing has been done to maintain them and nature is allowed to let them morph. Perversely, I consider the second most natural those where partial sod walls have been inserted to stop certain parts of the bunker eroding. What I donít consider natural is a frilly edged bunker that needs daily maintenance of its edges to keep it the same shape as itís always been. Just because something is frilly edged does not always mean it looks like it fits. Guess thatís my point.

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