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History and Heritage

The Dornoch Firth Golf Courses represent all that’s wonderful about Scottish Links Golf design. Brora and Golspie were design by James Braid, Tom Morris was responsible for Tain and Dornoch is the home of Donald Ross

James Braid

Born Earlsferry, Fife; 1870 - 1950

Braid was born in Fife and played golf from an early age, working as a clubmaker before turning professional in 1896.

He won The Open Championship five times.

In 1912, Braid retired from tournament golf and became a club professional at Walton Heath.

He was involved in golf course design, and is sometimes regarded as the "inventor" of the dogleg.

As well as his role in the development of both Brora and Golspie, among his designs are both the "King's" and the "Queen's" at Gleneagles, and the remodelling of Open Championship venue, Carnoustie as well.

Tom Morris

Born St. Andrews, Fife; 1821 - 1875

Old Tom Morris was born in St Andrews in 1821 and played a role in designing courses across the British Isles.

He began by assisting at Carnoustie in 1842 and his subsequent work included Prestwick, Muirfield, the Jubilee Course at St Andrews and Tain on the Dornoch Firth

Morris introduced the concept of top-dressing greens with sand and he was the first to use a push mower to cut greens and standardised the length of a golf course to 18 holes.

He was also influential in the launch of The Open Championship 150 years ago this year in 1860, and struck the very first shot in that event at Prestwick and remained active until his death in his home town aged 86.

Donald Ross

Born Dornoch, Sutherland; 1872 - 1948

By the time he died in 1948, Scotsman Donald Ross left behind a legacy of 413 courses, including Pinehurst No. 2 in North Carolina and the site of the 1996 U.S. Open, Oakland Hills outside Detroit. Ross was born in 1872 in Dornoch.

As a young man he took up "the keeping of the green." After a year of apprenticeship at St. Andrews under the tutelage of 4-time British Open champion "Old" Tom Morris, he returned to his native Dornoch and became adept not only at maintaining the grounds but also as a player and club maker.

Perhaps Ross's most famous designs are Pinehurst No. 2, Aronimink Golf Club, Seminole Golf Club, Oak Hill and Oakland Hills.

Golf watchers would have recently seen Graeme McDowall triumph on Ross's Seminole in the 2010 US Open.


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