Colt, Harry Shapland (H.S.)

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Biography

Harry Colt was a Cambridge educated Lawyer from the West Midlands in England. A proficient player, Harry captained the Cambridge golf team. After graduation, he lived and worked in Hastings, a short journey from Rye. As a member and capable player, he was given the opportunity to redesign the links with the help of Douglas Rolland. The same year he was appointed to serve as the club's honorary secretary.

From Rye to Sunningdale

In 1901, Harry applied to be the secretary of the Willie Park Jr layout, Sunningdale. From his arrival until his departure in 1913, Harry made continuous improvements to the layout. His design work was not limited to just Sunningdale. During this period, numerous courses were developed in the Surrey heathland and also in Scotland at St. Andrews. His work at the home of golf cemented his reputation as the worlds leading architect at that time.

Colt's Associates 

During his time at Sunningdale, the demand for his services steadily grew. Harry had so much work he took on an associate, Hugh Alison, in 1906. In 1907, Colt was asked to provide a second opinion at Alwoodley. The secretary and architect of the course? Dr Alister Mackenzie. The relationship forged during the subsequent years would result in the formation of Colt, MacKenzie & Alison in 1919. By 1923, MacKenzie had left the firm. He was replaced in 1928 by another Cambridge golf captain, John Morrison, creating Colt, Alison and Morrison Limited.

A Closer Look

We wish to thank friend of Evalu18 and collaborator, Keith Cutten, for the material for this short biography. For a more detailed account, you can find his book by clicking here. Harry S Colt is perhaps best known for his book, Some Essays on Golf-Course Architecture.

 


Architectural Hallmarks

Bunkering on Par 3's usually odd numbered.

He felt courses should reside in the land as opposed to upon it.

Courses should be a part of the natural landscape.

Most greens are square or rectangular.


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