Hardelot restoration gathers pace


Hardelot restoration gathers pace
Sean Dudley

The restoration project currently underway at Tom Simpson’s Les Pins course at Hardelot in northern France looks set to accelerate over the next couple of years.

Franco-Dutch architect team Patrice Boissonnas and Frank Pont have completed the first set of works, comprising tree removal and bunker reconstruction on the par five fifth hole, and have now formulated a plan for the comprehensive restoration of the course to match Simpson’s original design.

“In general, the plan is to faithfully restore all eighteen putting greens and all the original greenside bunkers,” Pont told GCA. “Using old aerial pictures we will also restore the fairway bunkers, and at the same time redo the tee complexes, making them less like runways and more separate tees. We have a rigorous plan to open the playing corridors of the course by removing the excess trees that have accumulated over 80 years, and we are thinking hard about a programme to reintroduce fescue grasses throughout, to being back the true links feeling.”