Christian Lundin of (re)Golf has completed the first phase of a restoration project at Stockholms Golfklubb in Sweden.
The architect aims to restore the course back to how it was originally designed by Harry Colt and John Morrison in 1932, but to modern maintenance standards.
“The course has been run down for some years, with irrigation and bunkers that were not up to scratch,” says Lundin. “The club did an irrigation and drainage project fifteen years ago, but the members were not happy with the work, as it was not true to the history of the course.”
Renovation work started a few years ago, but the club approached Lundin to help resolve a problem caused by a local authority plan to install a major electric cable across the property. The cable would have disturbed the club’s practice green, requiring a rebuild. Lundin told the club: “If I am going to touch this course, it needs to be a true restoration.”
After extensive discussion and historical research, construction began in early July. The course’s 92 bunkers will be restored to match early photographs. “Our process is to look at the old views and I do hand sketches of what we want to replicate,” said Lundin.
Bunkers are being rebuilt with Capillary Bunkers’ liner product. “When the course was originally built, I’m certain it was built to the best standards they had,” said Lundin. “The same is true nowadays. We’re not trying to restore 1932 maintenance standards. We want to give them a playing experience that matches what they had back then, but with modern standards.”
Head greenkeeper Andreas Wahlberg says that using Capillary Bunkers will free up time for his team to focus on preserving the historical aesthetic of the new bunkers. “Like many older courses, we had lost the shape of the golf course, mostly to make it easier to maintain,” he said. “The new bunkers will be more consistent and easier to maintain. If I’m not worrying about drainage, then I can give more attention to maintaining a complex bunker edge.”
The first phase of the project, which was completed recently, involved 45 bunkers. The course will now reopen for eight weeks, before closing in late September to allow the construction team – including shapers Marcus Terry and Simon Broadley of British contractor 1st Golf Construction – to finish the project.
The restored course is expected to fully open in spring 2022.