British Golf Museum St Andrews

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The British Golf Museum is situated next to the Royal and Ancient Golf Club at St Andrews Old Course, in the centre of St Andrews town.

The Museum can be visited all year with an entrance fee. Postcode: KY16 9AB

Museum Map Large Images
St Andrews Page Accommodation

See also a large Click On Map for Top Attractions in the area.

The image top is from the first tee at the Old Course at St Andrews. The clubhouse at the Old Course is known as the Royal and Ancient Golf Club.



The image second top is of the cafe / diner in the museum with good views down the first hole at St Andrews Old Course.

The museum covers golf from today back to when it was played at St Andrews in the 1400s, said to be where golf as we know it today was first played.

Golf History

960s - Royals from China hit balls into holes with clubs.

1200s - a golf like game was being played in the Netherlands with sticks and leather balls.

1400s – golf is played in Scotland with hand made wooden clubs and wooden balls.

1502 – the first professionally manufactured wooden golf clubs are made for King James IV of Scotland.

1618 - the Featherie golf ball was introduced made of leather stuffed with goose feathers.

1750 - the first golf clubs with iron heads are made that were not popular as they wore out the expensive Featherie golf ball too fast.

1848 - The Guttie ball was invented by Rev. Adam Paterson made from dried sap of the Malaysian sapodilla tree. The sap had a rubber-like feel that was made round by heating and shaping in a mold. These balls were less expensive so allowed more people to play the game.

The Guttie ball was heavier than the Featherie so clubs had to be made stronger.

1860 - the first Open Championship is played at Prestwick Golf Club in Ayrshire with Willie Park Sr beating Old Tom Morris by two shots. The first 12 Opens were played at Prestwick.

1873 - The Open is played at St Andrews for the first time with Tom Kidd winning.

The Open is now held at Carnoustie, Royal Portrush, Royal St George's, St Andrews, Royal Birkdale, Muirfield, Royal Liverpool, Royal Lytham and St Annes, Royal Troon, and Turnberry.

Courses that used to host The Open are Prestwick, Prince's, and Royal Cinuque Ports.

1898 – the wound golf ball was created made up of a rubber core with strands of elastic wound around the core then covered with a plastic coating.

1900s early – dimples were added to golf balls to give more control.

1929 – first metal shafted clubs are manufactured.

1939 - R&A introduced it's 14 club rule.

1962 - fiberglass shafts were introduced but were not popular as they often cracked.

1970 - the first graphite shafts were produced, becoming the shaft of the future.

1970 - Jack Nicklaus wins The Open at St Andrews.

1972 - the first modern two piece balls were introduced by Spalding with a solid rubber core covered in plastic giving greater distance.

Many professionals continued to use balatawound rubber core balls claiming they had more accuracy.

1974 - first aluminum woods are produced.

1978 - Jack Nicklaus wins The Open at St Andrews.

1980s - first cavity back irons are produced.

1980s - fist titanium woods are produced.

1984 - Seve Ballesteros wins the Open at St Andrews.

1990 - Nick Faldo wins The Open at St Andrews.

1991 - Callaway's over sized Big Bertha driver was introduced, first of the much larger clubs.

1995 - John Daly won The Open at St Andrews.

2000 - Tiger Woods won The Open Championship at St Andrews playing with Nike solidconstruction balls, leading to most professionals changing from balatawound to solidconstruction balls.

2005 - Tiger Woods won The Open at St Andrews.

The latest trend is woods with titanium heads and graphite shafts which are expensive.

Official website:
britishgolfmuseum.co.uk

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British Golf Museum St Andrews photos