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St. Andrews decides to remove new stone patio at Swilcan Bridge after social media uproar

It didn’t take long for St. Andrews Links Trust to reverse course. The stonework that was recently added to the famed Swilcan Bridge at the Old Course will be removed in the coming days. The pivot comes after golf fans took to social media with an avalanche of criticism.

St. Andrews officials said the move to add the stone “patios” at both ends of the bridge was done to mitigate the wear and tear of the turf from tens of thousands of visitors each year.

“The stonework at the approach and exit of the bridge was identified as one possible long-term solution,” the statement read. “However while this installation would have provided some protection, in this instance we believe we are unable to create a look which is in keeping with its iconic setting and have taken the decision to remove it.

“We have also taken on feedback from many partners and stakeholders as well as the golfing public and we would like to thank everyone who has been in touch for their contribution to the issue.”

What a front page by @thecourieruk today…

— Michael McEwan (@MMcEwanGolf) February 6, 2023

The decision comes one day after St. Andrews released a statement explaining the decision to add the stones.

If you’ve travelled halfway around the world for your bucket list round at St Andrews, would you rather leave with a bit of historic dirt on your shoes or a few cement mix scraps?

— Sir Nick Faldo (@NickFaldo006) February 5, 2023

The iconic bridge is believed to be 700 to 800 years old.

Further to recent communications about works in the area around the Swilcan Bridge, we have released an updated statement below.

The full statement can also be found on our website here:

— St Andrews Links (@TheHomeofGolf) February 6, 2023

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