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Canadian Golf Architecture Review: Darrell Huxham

An ongoing series reviewing Canadian golf designers

Darrell Huxham/Warren Huxham

Years in industry: 20

Key course: Lochness Links, Welland, Ont.; Le Maître de Mont, Tremblant, Que.; Glen Arbor (Halifax, NS)

Recent work: The overhaul of Fairmont’s Manoir Richelieu in La Malbaie, Que. A new project for former Prime Minister Paul Martin on his family estate.

Strengths:

  • A well regarded golfer of some ability who played on the golf team at the University of North Carolina.
  • Plenty of experience from working with Cooke.
  • Designed several strong projects in key Ontario markets.
  • High profile client in Paul Martin

Weaknesses:

  • Appears to be still working under the shadow of Cooke.
  • Has launched his own firm at a time when golf industry is slowing.
  • Takes credit for work done under the Cooke banner, though there is some debate about who did what. In some instances, takes credit for courses like Fox Harb’r, generally regarded as over-shaped and one of the biggest misses in Canadian golf.

Overview: A well regarded designer with plenty of experience, Huxham has yet to hit a home run since starting his own firm in 2005. Part of the issue is many confuse several of his key works – like Glen Arbor near Halifax, N.S., and the newly rechristened Lochness Links near Welland, Ont. – as the creation of Graham Cooke, his former partner. He’s not been nearly as prolific since leaving Cooke’s firm, though he has undertaken work for former Prime Minister Paul Martin. Unfortunately that project garnered more attention for some environmental problems than anything else so far.

What’s possible?: With some clear talent, it is not inconceivable that if the industry picks up, Huxham could become one of the most noted architects in Eastern Canada. But so far he’s been pretty quiet since leaving Cooke’s firm.

Grade: B

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Robert Thompson

A bestselling author and award-winning columnist, Robert Thompson has been writing about business and sports, and particularly golf, for almost two decades. His reporting and commentary on golf has appeared in Golf Magazine, the Globe and Mail, T&L Golf and many other media outlets. Currently Robert is a columnist with Global Golf Post, golf analyst for Global News and Shaw Communications, and Senior Writer to ScoreGolf. The Going for the Green blog was launched in 2004.

1 CommentLeave a comment

  • Rob,

    While I reckognize that it is your grading system and it’s your perrogative to grade any way you want to, I can’t agree with giving Darrel Huxham the same grade as Kevin Holmes. Not being critical of Holmes, but Huxham’s contribution to the golf industry through design simply eclipses that of Holmes, both in quality and quantity.

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