Chapter 2 extract: Selkirk – The final hole is named after Haining House, a Palladian mansion to the west of the course. Built and occupied by the Clan Pringle from the 18th Century, the house and estate were bequeathed to the people of Selkirk in 2009 by an altruistic millionaire……Haining, is a magnificent finish; a 151 yard par 3 from an elevated tee, some 45 feet above the green with fine views to the west. Can there be a more compelling, satisfying and rewarding sporting achievement than striking a golf ball from a high tee and watching it ride the air before its descent to the heart of the green. I think not; it is the delay between the action and the result, the sweet moments of expectation as the ball flies, hangs in the air and then begins its descent. Time stands still; the perfect ending to a near perfect course.
Innerleithen – As introductions to golf courses go, this is almost unique. The tee is 15 feet above the clubhouse and some 30 feet higher than the distant par three green. To your right is the Leithen Road, behind the green is Leithen Water and along the entire route to the green there is a burn. It is an inspiring challenge; serious hackers will make use of the road camber. It is no wonder that the club emblem includes the words from Matthew 26:41: Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.
The drawing is an artist’s impression of Selkirk’s final hole. The Antonio Canova inspired statues are from the Haining – they are currently in storage for safe-kepping whilst the house is being renovated.