Kingsbarns Golf Links is proudly celebrating its 20th anniversary today (July 17th) with news that the award-winning Scottish course is to officially reopen on Saturday, August 1.
Given the continuing Covid-19 related restrictions, the famed Scottish course is unable to celebrate the occasion in proper style, however, the layout, located just a handful of miles east of St. Andrews is celebrating given news that play will resume at Kingsbarns Golf Links next month.
“The worldwide Coronavirus pandemic has tempered what today is, still a very proud milestone for Kingsbarns Golf Links as we were planning multiple activities to help celebrate our 20th birthday,” said Alan Hogg, CEO at Kingsbarns Golf Links.
“Kingsbarns Golf Links had been shut for the winter since last November and then with the lockdown early in March, it meant postponing our official new season opening due for 28th March.
“Now with an official return to golf in Scotland and many of the food and drink facilities reopening in close-by St. Andrews, Kingsbarns Golf Links is aligning ourselves with St. Andrews with the 1st August being the official reopening for our golf course and also for visitors wishing to play the many St. Andrews located courses.”
Golf has been enjoyed over the links at Kingsbarns since 1793 and it was not until 1922 when the old Kingsbarns Golfing Society was re-established with the founding of the Kingsbarns Golf Club.
Legendary Willie Auchterlonie laid out a nine-hole course but with the onset of the Second World War, the Links was closed and eventually reverted to rough pasture.
In 1997, Kyle Phillips was commissioned to design Kingsbarns Golf Links on the same land and then three years later on 17th July, 2000, Sir Michael Bonallack, in the same year he was inducted into the Golf Hall of Fame, proudly hit the opening tee shot.
“In a short 20-year history Kingsbarns Golf Links has proudly achieved much in the game of golf and particularly in the environment which we reside in given we are surrounded by some of the oldest golf courses and facilities in the world,” added Hogg.
“Kingsbarns Golf Links is really still a baby but then we have proudly hosted on 19 occasions the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship. We were honoured in 2017 with staging the Ricoh Women’s British Open. Earlier, in 2008, we hosted the Jacques Leglise Trophy and in 2010, Kingsbarns was handed hosting of the Open Championship local qualifying for The Open held that year at St. Andrews
“Kingsbarns Golf Links has also been widely praised and rewarded for our golf course, along with awards recognising our customer service and customer experience.
“In the 20-years since we opened over a half a million golfers have walked our course and Kingsbarns Golf Links has established itself as one of the St. Andrews region’s golf courses that enhances the overall St. Andrews experience.
“It’s been a short journey yet we have achieved a lot in these 20-years.
“The thing is also we don’t have club members so it is a unique environment and while you don’t get to see the same faces every other day, you do build relationships with visitors who have been here to play the course multiple times.
The stunning Kingsbarns Golf Links is a gem amongst many terrific tracks in the region and so it’s no wonder tourism flourishes, at least ordinary, with golfers flooding the area from far and wide.
“We have golfers who have played the course in triple digits occasions over the 20-years, and coming from all over the world, and just because they enjoy coming back to the Kingsbarns, to Crail Golfing Society, to Lundin Links, to St. Andrews and to Scotland,” said Hogg.
“They just love golf and they love the Scottish hospitality and that is one of the sad things in the current times of uncertainty as Kingsbarns Golf Links has always been about the customer experience right from the time of arrival to when they do leave.
“So, our 20th anniversary message to all our friends and intending visitors is to get on the phone and book a tee-time. Of course, we cannot shake your hand but there will still be a warm greeting and a now pristine-looking golf course awaiting your arrival from 1st August.”
Happy 20th birthday Kingsbarns Golf Links from all of us here at Irish Golfer Magazine