The Maps

Survey of the Old Course by A. Martin, 1821

This is the earliest known map of the Old Course and was produced following a survey carried out on 8 December 1821. All the holes are named, but no bunkers are shown. The course measured 3,189 yards out and 3,189 yards back, for total of 6,378 yards.

The surveyor, A. Martin, may have been the landscape and topographical painter who was registered in Leith at that time.

Amendments to the map were made in 1847 as a result of the introduction of the railway line.  Surprisingly, the revised survey showed the railway line as it appeared in the original proposal for bringing trains into St Andrews, a scheme which brought much criticism from golfers and which was significantly changed.

A committee appointed by the R&A objected to the proposed route, “which would have had the effect of separating the putting green of the burn hole from the remainder of the course”.  By March 1846 the railway company had agreed to move the line to the south to avoid the golf course. It is a mystery, therefore, as to why Martin should have included the original route on the map a year later.

The map was donated to The Royal and Ancient Golf Club by Mr James Hughes in January 1985.

Plan of the Old Course by W&J Chalmers, 1836

This elaborate and detailed plan of the Old Course was commissioned by The Royal and Ancient Golf Club.  It includes nine inserts depicting each hole, all of which are named.  Forty-one bunkers are marked, with twenty-six named. The town is also shown, with each building indicated having a connection to golf, the church or the university.

William Chalmers was a land surveyor, who first appears in the Perth register of electors in 1833 and was last recorded in the Perth directories in 1843-44.  In 1842 he was one of the local organisers for Queen Victoria's visit to Perth.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Plan showing the Ground of The Royal & Ancient Golf club of St Andrews by Little & Boothby, 1879

Little & Boothby were Kirkcaldy based surveyors.  Their map of the Old Course, which was commissioned by the Club, shows forty-seven bunkers, but only twenty-two are named. The railway line and Union Club are included.  A plan, which is also in the collection, shows only the bunkers and may have been carried out by Little & Boothby at the same time. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Map of the Old and New Course by B. Hall Blyth, 1896

Benjamin Hall Blyth was a Civil Engineer.  He was a member of the R&A and served on various committees, including the Rules of Golf Committee.  During the 1890s he was also Chairman of the Directors of Edinburgh's sick children's hospital.

Hall Blyth presented the map to the Club.  The New Course, which he designed, had only opened in April 1895.

At the Committee of Management meeting on 1 September 1896, "the Honorary Secretary was requested to convey to Mr B. Hall Blyth the cordial thanks of the Committee for a Plan of the Links in a handsome frame which he has presented to the Club".

 

 

 

 

Plan of the Old Course by Alister MacKenzie, 1924

Alister MacKenzie was one of the most influential golf course architects of his generation.  A doctor by training, he served in both the Boer War and the First World War.  He designed or redesigned many courses all over the world.

He approached the Club in 1922, “offering to prepare a plan of the Old Course for a fee not exceeding thirty guineas” and the Club accepted.  At the Committee of Management meeting on 17 June 1924 a letter from MacKenzie was read, in which he offered the plan without payment.  The thanks of the committee “for this handsome gift” were duly sent to MacKenzie.

The plan shows the position of the Old Course in relation to the coast line, with details of the boundaries and bunkers.