To commemorate our 20th anniversary, we have created a ‘memory box’ to capture special moments from the past two decades here at Kingsbarns Golf Links.
Featured below are some of our favourite stories, photographs and memories, sent in by our visitors, celebrating their Kingsbarns experience over the years.
On my second season as a caddy this was me working for one of the 2019 Curtis cup Stars Bronte Law when as an amateur she played Kingsbarns in the RICOH Final Qualifying in 2013 – always knew she would have a great career !
All The best for a great 20th Anniversary.
Brian Main (Former Caddy – sadly retired!)
It’s pretty simple, if you’re going to St Andrews you have to include Kingsbarns Golf Links as part of your tour. One of the most enjoyable courses you’ll every play and Audrey/Alan and the rest of the team are always extremely welcoming with excellent service! “One of the best par 3s on the planet”
Fantastic news that Kingsbarns is 20 years old. Congratulations and how time flies! I played there with my friend Mark a few times, Kingsbarns is always a great challenge. Mark is pictured above. Kingsbarns will be the first course we play when we get off the plane!
I played golf mostly with my father. He took the game up in his late 40s as i showed an interest and his excuse was he was babysitting by taking me to golf. Over the years we taught ourselves and got better and better to such an extent we travelled up from the west coast to play Kingsbarns each year. It was the highlight of our year.
Unfortunately my father’s health deteriorated as he got into his 70s, pneumonia, shingles etc all took their toll. He then had a nasty fall and broke his hip which required emergency surgery. He battled his way back and was able to resume golf but he is no longer able to play longer courses and mostly plays 9.
In 2015 we decided to have one last ‘fancy’ game together and i asked my dad where he wanted to sign-off – no hesitation, Kingsbarns. We played late one afternoon in July and had the course to ourselves. Just my dad and I knowing this was probably the end to our 30 years of playing 18 holes together.
Special doesn’t cover it. I still visit Fife regularly and now have 2 sons who are keen golfers aged 8 and 10. They came up to Kingsbarns for the ladies open a few years ago and loved it. Each year when i visit Fife i always pop into the shop and buy a hat, shirt or something from Kingsbarns. But mostly I return to just see that 18th green, the first tee, the air, the welcome on the first tee all of which reminds me of special times golfing with my dad.
I saw your call for favorite memories. I’m the gent on the right. Here’s our group photo on #15 tee moments before I hit it to about 4′ for a birdie in August 2018. What a great Par 3 and love your course overall! I’ll also mention that your caddies were the best we experienced in Scotland so congratulations to that team!!
#tbt to Dunhill 2018 celebrating @kingsbarnsgolflinks 20th Anniversary! #20YearsOfKingsbarns
We first played your fabulous course on my 50th birthday in August 2017. It was top of both our bucket lists so was quite an occasion. Unfortunately, during the weekend (we were staying at the Fairmont) I wasn’t too well. Nothing serious just tarnished the occasion a little bit. So, we vowed to return.
Which we did for the Golf in Scotland event in April 2018. We didn’t play quite as well as we did on our first visit but the whole day was made extra special by my (now) husband who proposed to me outside the clubhouse! Attached pictures taken by our playing partners!
Kingsbarns is still, and will always be, our favourite course.
Margaret & Graham Shepherd
It was the Summer of 2015. My second time to play Kingsbarns (my favorite course in the world) and I was playing with one of my best friends and both of our Dads…doesn’t get much better than that! On the drivable 6th hole, I hit my drive onto the fringe…all I could think about was EAGLE. I proceeded to leave the eagle putt 20 feet short. Blew the Birdie putt 8 feet past. Almost missed the ball on my Par attempt, leaving it a solid 3-3.5 feet short.
Everyone in the group is silent. That 4th putt for bogey is NOT a gimmie…No one in the group says a word…I collect my thoughts…I take a deep breath and panic – and then, our Kingsbarns caddie (an angel sent from above) steps in, picks up my ball and tosses it to me. ‘No one wants to see you 5-putt’ – and he walked towards the 7th tee.
Love the course and can’t wait to come back!
As you can see the tide was out when we go there so not as intimidating, but with a back right pin and the grounds crew looking on I smoked a 2 hybrid through the wind to 10 feet. Alas I missed the putt but what a great hole inland the memory to last a lifetime. Can’t wait to come back with my sons.
Visited in September 2014 and played the course twice. Eight guys and we had a week in St. Andrews with no rain. A trip of a lifetime and Kingsbarns is my favorite course in the world. Hope to get back again.
My special moment on Kingsbarns is a match with Mr Ian Woosnam in May 2018 – using his putter from his victory in US Masters 1991, on the 8th hole par 3.
Morten Albin Olsen
In the spring of 2014 when I was turning 40, I took the trip of a lifetime (hoping to do it again in the next couple of years with my son). Me and my buddy played: St. Andrew’s Old and New, Carnoustie, Glen Eagles, Montrose, Monifieth, Panmure and we finished our last day with a fairly new course: Kingsbarns.
To this day this is my favorite place I’ve played. And living on Long Island, I’ve been fortunate to have played many of the top courses in the world. Including Bethpage Black that I play a few times a year.
That was a precursor to the story.
A few years back when the British Open was being held at St. Andrew’s, on Facebook, Kingsbarns posted a picture of Bubba Watson (I think) practicing. I commented that Kingsbarns was my favorite place and whomever posted the photo commented back. I then instant messaged the person letter asking if they sold the divot repair tools, as I had recently lost mine and it was last memento of Kingsbarns, she asked for my post (figured she meant address) and about a week later I received all sorts of goodies, including a new divot repair tool.
I can’t wait to return and hope my son has the same experience I did.
My memory occurred 10 years ago this April. We were planning on celebrating our 10-year anniversary with a reunion trip to St Andrews but unfortunately we were stopped by a virus…
This unfortunate incident reminds me of the adventure we encountered ten years ago, which turned into one crazy but fantastic golf weekend trip with two of my mates.
It all started on Thursday morning. My trip was booked for Friday leaving from Copenhagen – destination Kingsbarns, Castle Course and the old course! I had been looking forward to this trip since I can remember. So, you can imagine my reaction when my boss told me that Thursday morning to check the news…so I did…a volcano in Iceland had grounded all planes in Europe. After speaking to the airline, it was clear there was no way any plane was leaving Copenhagen that Friday.
What should we do, what would you do? We decided if we couldn’t get there by plane, it will have to be by car. Nothing was going to stop this trip, after all we had been planning this trip for months.
We left Halmstad, Sweden, on Thursday evening and we drove non-stop to St Andrews, only stopping for a break when we were on the ferry between Denmark and Germany and then again from France to England. You could imagine, when we arrived in St Andrews, we passed out…but we woke up in time to drive down to Kingsbarns. Unfortunately, the weather was not on our side ether, but your warm welcome made up for it!
We played in the rain, even though it was hitting us in every direction…the rain was coming at us side-ways…and it was so cold that I couldn’t feel my fingers.
After that, I never looked forward so much to get back inside to the warm clubhouse and have some lunch!
You felt so sorry for us and told us that the weather was likely to clear up soon so just relax and have lunch and by the time you finish just go back out and play another round! And you were right! We were so glad we took you up on that advice…we played the next round in the sunshine, and it was one of the best rounds of golf I have ever played! When we came back inside, the day was topped off – we found three bottles of Kingsbarns whisky waiting for us in recognition of the crazy trip that brought us to this town just to play golf for three days. Let me tell you that it was the best decision we made. We had a blast – no regrets!
Imagine what the ride back home was like…long!
Thank you again for making our day so special!
All grown up and both working and playing at the course.
Picture taken during the grow in while checking the course with his dad.
September 2017, what a great golf course
My wife and I spent part of our honeymoon at KB. My now favourite course in the world.
Pictured above Ed, Nancy, Sheena, Tuny and David
My cousin John Smith from Canada stroking it at the 10th – July 2007
The 12th hole at KB. What an amazing hole, double bogey for me though in 2017. Played 4 times and hoping to get up there again soon.
My 1st visit from Australia to KB in 2019, certainly won’t be my last.
Many happy returns, albeit we unfortunately do not have a lot to celebrate at this moment in time.
However, memories and the prospect of returning to your, and my personal favorite course, once again in the near future, provides me with something to look forward too.
I attach a couple of memoirs for your consideration with regards your 20th Birthday Celebration Request.
The first, with accompanying photograph was taken during one of the many Belhaven Spring Cups we played at your course.
On this occasion, unknown to the rest of his teammates, Mr Grant Smith provided us each with a pair of Royal & Awesome printed trousers in the locker room.
As you can see, only word to describe them was ghastly …..
Having gotten over the early ridicule, the surprise and comments within the clubhouse, we made our way to the first tee.
Your starter, took one look at us, at promptly declared “Well guys, you must all be some players to carry off wearing clobber like that” , to which each and every one of us promptly looked at each other, as our knees began to shake …….
Low and behold, one by one, we each promptly drove off straight down the middle … and thanked the starter as we made our way down the first with chests puffed out.
I do recall however, that it was the only hole on the round were this actually happened!
NB/ You might recognise one of your 2019 staff member in the photo, Mr Clark Wilson, accompanied by me Mr Andy Martin, Mr Grant Smith & Mr Robbie Crawford.
The second memoir is actually a verbal recollection, that I am still merrily reminded of to this day …. and was on a different occasion with the same group.
Having played a great round, with all still to play for going down the 18th, I have hit a good drive against the wind which has given me the option to either lay up or go for the green in two.
A confident 10 handicapper, I hummed and hawed for several minutes, watched our playing partners knock it short, then I decided to go for it …. against my partners will.
Having taken out my rescue, performed several ‘great’ practice swings, I stood over the ball completely confident …….. only to top the ball some 75 yards low along and down the fairway, and to be met with a chorus of laughter.
The comments immediately followed ‘ I thought you weren’t laying up’, ‘great shot laying up with a rescue’ etc , to which almost every round since, I have been reminded off.
Lots of great memories, and hopefully a lot more to look forward too.
Keep up the good work on a great course.
Greetings from Atlanta GA. I wanted to submit two photos for your 20th anniversary memory project. I have made 6 visits to your course over the past 10 years and Kingsbarns is among my favorite courses in all the world.
A round on Saturday, 3 June 2017, a 16:00 tee time, was unquestionably the most extraordinary round of golf I have experienced. When I arrived the links were shrouded in a dense, thick, blanket of fog and mist billowing in from the North Sea, such that I thought it may have been a mistake to turn up for the round. From the clubhouse and 1st tee, it was not possible to see beyond 100 yards or so, thus the majestic surrounds of the sea, coastline, and rumpled terrain of the course was all obscured and hidden from view. The fog was so intense that it was only possible to know where to hit a tee shot from the red flashing signal poles that were placed in the landing zones. Adding to the weathery drama, my wife agreed to accompany me for the walk – which turned out to be a real blessing since she brought her camera – although I was concerned that we could get trapped in disagreeable weather conditions and also disheartened that she may not see and enjoy the beauty of the course that I had described to her.
The initial trepidation of venturing out, however, was rewarded. We played in the mist for the first 4 or 5 holes, then in some sideways cold rain, followed by winds accompanied with clouds of darkness – which by the turn to the 10th all began to give way into brilliant early evening Scottish summer sunshine. It was the most extraordinary range and variety of weather to be experienced and encountered within a single round, and to share these wonders on the Fife coast alongside my wife has given to me a lasting memory to treasure.
After our return home, my wife presented to me as a birthday gift which adorns the wall of my study – the first attached photo of my second shot on Hole 3 in the sea mist, where you can note the flashing red signal light in the fairway. And the second photo is in the sunshine a couple hours later on Hole 12 with my playing companions walking ahead.
Happy 20th Anniversary indeed! My warmest best wishes to the staff and the full Kingsbarns team. I hope and trust that all will remain safe and in good health. I can’t wait to get back to Kingsbarns again.
George M. Hiller Jr.