Why is St Andrews the ‘home of golf’? Where is the Old Course and does The Open take place there every year

It could be the final time Tiger Woods plays on the Old Course

The 150th Open Championship began this morning (14th July) at St Andrews’s Old Course.

The British Open marks the last of the four major tournaments to be played in 2022 and will feature some of the biggest names in the sport.

The likes of Rory Mcllroy and Cameron Smith are the bookmakers’ favourites to win the competition and it could also be the final time Tiger Woods plays at St Andrews. It is a venue he has previously described as his all time favourite.

St Andrews is a venue that will resonate with golf fans throughout the world, and it has played host to some of the most memorable moments in the history of the sport.

Here is everything you need to know about the iconic venue.

Tiger Woods has revealed that this may be his final time playing at St Andrews. (Getty Images)Tiger Woods has revealed that this may be his final time playing at St Andrews. (Getty Images)
Tiger Woods has revealed that this may be his final time playing at St Andrews. (Getty Images)

Where is St Andrews golf course?

St Andrews golf course is located in a town called St Andrews which is situated on the east coast of Fife in Scotland.

It is a seaside resort on the north-east of Edinburgh and is home to St Andrews University, the most prestigious university in Scotland.

When was St Andrews golf course built?

The Old Course at St Andrews is the oldest golf course in the world.

According to the Guiness Book of Records, Archbishop Hamilton’s Charter in 1552 is the earliest documentary evidence that allowed the people of St Andrews to play golf.

Why is St Andrews the ‘home of golf’?

The Old Course at St Andrews is considered by many to be the ‘home of golf’ because the sport was first played on the links at St Andrews in the early 15th century.

Golf was becoming an increasingly popular sport until in 1457, when James II of Scotland banned the sport as he felt it was distracting men from practising their archery. The ban was followed up until 1502 when King James IV became a golfer himself and removed the ban.

With each century that followed the popularity of the sport grew considerably.

Was golf invented at St Andrews?

The first ever 18- hole course was constructed at St Andrews in 1764, establishing the now recognised standard for the game.

Cameron Young of the United States plays his second shot on the seventeenth hole. (Getty Images)Cameron Young of the United States plays his second shot on the seventeenth hole. (Getty Images)
Cameron Young of the United States plays his second shot on the seventeenth hole. (Getty Images)

Most memorable moments at St Andrews

The old course at St Andrews has witnessed some of the most memorable moments in the history of golf.

One of the most memorable came when Tiger Woods won his first British Open in 2000. Earlier that year he had smashed one major record with a 15 shot win at the US Open, but at St Andrews he set a record with another 19 under par total. Els and Thomas Bjorn were the nearest contenders on under 11 and Woods’ margin of victory was the highest since 1870.

Does The Open take place at St Andrews every year?

The British Open is the oldest championship in golf. Fourteen courses have hosted the British Open since it first began in 1860 and there are nine courses which are rotated each year.

Here is a full list of the other venues that are currently used:

  • Muirfield - Gullane, Scotland
  • Royal St George’s Golf Club - Sandwich, England
  • Royal Liverpool Golf Club- Hoylake, England
  • Royal Troon Golf Club - Glasgow, Scotland
  • Royal Lytham & St Annes Golf Club - Lytham St Annes, England
  • Carnoustie Golf Links - Carnoustie, Scotland
  • Royal Portrush Golf Club - County Antrim, Northern Ireland
  • Royal Birkdale Golf Club - Southport, England