The world’s oldest nineteenth hole was a critically endangered monument for all of two seconds

Sharon Wong

Source: Brandon Tucker/TravelGolf

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On the premises of Musselburgh Links, the oldest golf course in the world, sits a quaint little pub that serves as its nineteenth hole. Mrs. Forman’s Pub has been around since 1822, back when it was known as Blucher Hall. While it was founded by a George Forman, it was his wife Marion who was the very same titular Mrs. Forman who kept it running until her death in 1881. For a terrifying instant, it seemed like her longstanding legacy was about to be wiped out in one fell swoop.

There were some obviously ill-thought-out plans to demolish the old pub to make way for dime-a-dozen housing after the site was sold to an Edinburgh based property firm. Not only was this unthinkable act going to do away with the historic monument altogether, it was also going to alter the old golf course itself. This is a course that has seen six Open Championships from 1874 to 1889 and has the special distinction of having its nine-hole track located within a race track. We can’t imagine having the gall and total lack of foresight to mess with that kind of pedigree.

Luckily, Mrs. Forman’s loyal following came to her rescue. Thanks to the outcry the idea of a demolishment elicited from historians, any plans to go ahead with it were withdrawn and a new plan is being drawn-up. Mrs. Forman’s will be a private residence instead of a nineteenth hole, but at the very least, she will survive intact. Not the best case scenario for the tired golfers she has been refreshing for well over a century, but certainly not the worst case scenario either.