- H.N. Wethered
It is one of the most difficult sacred texts to find, but it is worth the effort to do so. First Editions are scarce but can be tracked down. Grant Books published the book in 1995 (IBSN 9780907186557). Perhaps the best way to obtain this book on a budget is to find a book called: Design for Golf published in 1952. The Sportsman's Book Club republished the book and called by a different name. Classics of Golf also has a cost-effective option available.
In the book, there are 37 plates which convey as much thought as the words themselves. It can be heavy reading, but the time taken to absorb Simpson's thoughts will change the way you think about golf and design strategy. Chapters two through seven carry the most weight from an architectural standpoint. The Second is entitled "Attack and Defence". Next is "Fairways" followed by "Putting Greens" and then "The Ideal Golf Course". "General Principles, Construction and Upkeep" is followed by "Hazards" The opening chapters deal with the four ages of golf, and the last few are philosophical storytelling in nature. The Appendix contains information on Simpson's theory of a "Reversible Course".
Simpson's book is a golf course architecture sacred text. It should be in every golfer's library. Chapters Two through Seven would deepen the understanding and heighten the joy of any golfer who reads it.
Read if . . .
You want to understand the design principles of perhaps the most minimal strategist of golf course architecture.