Links to the Past

  • Shaun Tolson

When golfers finish their rounds at the Old Course in St. Andrews, they’re greeted by the sight of the Royal and Ancient clubhouse and the red sandstone facade of the former Hamilton Grand hotel that faces the 18th green from across the street. They might not notice the Tom Morris (www.tommorris.com) storefront, though it has stood just across The Links road on the right edge of the 18th fairway and green since 1866. The St. Andrews Links Trusts aims to change that.

The trust, which runs the seven golf courses of St. Andrews, as well as the five official golf shops in town, purchased the Tom Morris shop in 2010 and has big plans for the store, which reopened in 2011. In addition to renovating the 500-square-foot retail space and preserving the original locker, workbench, and fireplace that the famous Scottish greenkeeper used when he made clubs and balls, the trust is updating the shop’s inventory of golf apparel. According to Danny Campbell, the trust’s commercial director, beginning this summer the store will feature clothing that more strongly reflects the history of the shop and of the game in St. Andrews. “It’s going to feel British,” Campbell says of the new product line. “We’re using tweeds and tartans and we’re trying to give people a sense of Tom Morris’s significance in the game of golf.

“With the new collection there will be fabrics that haven’t been used before,” Campbell continues, “and that’s to show the innovation of Tom Morris. He was a pioneer, and we’re trying to bring that spirit back. It’s a huge honor to offer the oldest golf shop to our visitors.”

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