St Andrews Links has acted fast in digging up the controversial ‘patio’ it had installed leading into the Old Course‘s iconic Swilcan Bridge following intense backlash online from the golf community.
Video footage emerged on social media from ‘The Courier’ on Tuesday morning showing a digger at work and the area where the ‘patio’ briefly sat back to dirt and ready for turf to be re-installed.
The controversial Swilcan Bridge ‘patio’ is no more… pic.twitter.com/mY3kQwnbtNFebruary 7, 2023
Images recently emerged of the new installation ahead of the famous bridge but the reaction from the golf world was not positive, with one user on social media saying it was “like drawing a moustache on the Mona Lisa.”
St Andrews attempted to explain the reasoning for the changes, responding to the concerns with a statement confirming that no work had taken place on the bridge itself and explaining that it had been done to protect the area from the significant foot traffic it receives from visiting golfers. St Andrews’ Old Course is one of the world’s most famous golf courses and is open to the public from Mondays to Saturdays.
The online backlash continued, however, forcing St Andrews Links Trust to release a second statement, but this time the organisation confirmed that turf will be reinstated in the area and the ‘patio’ would be no more.
The statement explained that the work had been “undertaken as part of ongoing attempts to mitigate the issue of significant wear and tear to the turf.”
The short-lived change to the approach to the world famous Swilcan Bridge isn’t the only alteration recently seen on one of golf’s most iconic holes. The 13th hole at Augusta National has been lengthened in recent months, with confirmation from The Masters that it has increased by 35 yards ahead of the 2023 tournament.
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