The long-standing association between Nick Faldo and Ballyliffin Golf Club in northwest Ireland has been strengthened with the announcement that the six-times major champion’s design team has been appointed architects to the Old Course.
At a recent EGM, the club’s membership overwhelmingly voted to accept Faldo’s proposals for upgrading the Old Course – a programme of renovation with specific emphasis on bunkering, tee alignment and green sizes. Further plans to relocate some holes along the water are also being considered.
The project, which will commence in early October 2004 and is scheduled for completion during 2006, aims to establish the Old Course, which Faldo describes as “the most natural golf course I have ever played”, as one of the best in Ireland, thus giving the Ballyliffin members two contrasting yet immensely enjoyable links to play.
The Glashedy Links, designed by Pat Ruddy and Tom Craddock, opened in 1995.
Faldo’s association with Ballyliffin began in 1993 when, in preparation for his successful defence of the Irish Open, he flew in to play nine holes, eventually played 18 and then entered into talks to lease the club. Negotiations concluded in 1995 when members voted against the proposed takeover.
Now that the members have finally welcomed Faldo into their midst, local tourism chiefs are hoping for an upsurge as a result of this new relationship.
Ballyliffin Golf Club www.ballyliffingolfclub.com
Nick Faldo www.nickfaldo.com