A very dear friend and former employee of the Club Gordon Moir has recently launched a book telling of his time with the St Andrews Links in which he retired as the Director of Greenkeeping at the Home of Golf
.”A’ve deen nae bad for a loon fae the Broch” as he describes in the book.
Book is available now on Amazon at the link below and Gordon is planning to attend and indeed play in the Seniors Open in August and will take copies with him should anyone wish to purchase on the day, if this is peoples preference please can you let the club know so Gordon knows how many copies to bring with him.
I’m Sure Gordon needs no introduction to most Fraserburgh Golf Club Members but he has recently put pen to paper and the book is available on Amazon now, Here are a couple of excerpts from it.
About the Author –
Gordon Moir Born in Fraserburgh, North-East Scotland, I left school in 1975 to work on the family farm. A keen golfer, I accepted an apprenticeship at Fraserburgh Golf Club and began there in February 1976. I attended Elmwood College, in Cupar, gaining my City and Guilds in Greenkeeping in 1980, being awarded the St Andrews Links Trust Award for the best student in year three. Promoted to Head Greenkeeper at Fraserburgh GC in 1980, I remained there for a further eleven years. In September 1991, I began a twenty-seven-year career with St Andrews Links Trust when I accepted the position as Head Greenkeeper of the Eden Course. In October 2000, I was promoted to the role of Links Manager, responsible for all turf related matters on the six golf courses managed by St Andrews Links Trust. This title subsequently changed to Links Superintendent, then again to Director of Greenkeeping. Alongside overseeing the construction of the new Castle course in 2005, I led the greenkeeping department at three Open Championships, two Women’s British Opens, a Seniors’ British Open and a Curtis Cup along with numerous European Tour events and other championships. From an early stage in my career, I was consistent supporter of the British and International Golf Greenkeepers Association, becoming President of BIGGA in 2022.
We were standing in the locker room of the Royal and Ancient Golf Club, assembling into position prior to leaving for the presentation ceremony at the close of the 2015 Open Championship, when Peter Dawson, CEO of the R&A, reminded us to, “Check your mobile phones are switched off and your zips are pulled up.” Good advice. We climbed the stairs and passed through the Clubhouse, where five-times Open Champion Peter Thomson joined the line-up, before exiting the building and walking down the steps onto the Old Course. As soon as we arrived in our positions, I realised I was going to be standing immediately behind where the Champion Golfer of the Year would be presented with the Claret Jug and from where he would be making his thank-you speech.
While I was standing waiting for the presentation to begin, I thought to myself, “A’ve deen nae bad for a loon fae ‘i Broch.” Translate – “I’ve done well for a young boy from Fraserburgh.” This is from the Doric dialect, the language spoken in the north-east of Scotland. As soon as Zach Johnson began talking, I could feel my mobile phone vibrating in my pocket. ‘Friends’ from around the world, who were either watching the ceremony on television or were in the actual crowd, were sending me text messages and pictures of Zach standing there with the trophy. Gordon McKie, Course Manager of the Old Course, and I were standing either side and slightly behind him in our blazers and ties, looking every inch like we were his bodyguards! This book is a selection of stories, factual and sometimes irreverent or downright bizarre, of 27 years working at St Andrews Links. It charts my career at The Home of Golf, from arriving there in 1991, where I discovered to my surprise, the most famous golfing complex in the world wasn’t exactly how people would expect it to be, through to my retirement in December 2018.It includes my reflections on five Open Championships, three of which I led the greenkeeping team through. I go ‘behind the scenes’ revealing some of the more unusual events which took place during those championships, and the numerous other tournaments staged during my time as Director of Greenkeeping.
It’s certainly not a technical book on greenkeeping and was never intended to be although it does contain aspects of the work we undertook, explained in laymen’s terms. It explains the complexity of the Links Trust, its management and governance. It also charts the changes, at times controversial, to the Old Course and some of the more significant changes to the other courses managed by the Links Trust, along with my experience as part of the team constructing the Castle Course. In my position, I was fortunate to have the opportunity to visit, and play, many of the greatest courses in the world and meet some extraordinary people. Throughout the book are stories of the educational, interesting, unusual, humorous incidents and friendships I made over the years. Things the reader will never have heard of elsewhere or would have imagined could happen. These range from being part of the cast in a Hollywood movie to causing the local police concerns prior to an Open Championship, and from being heckled by the spectators at a US Open, to being chased through the grounds of Augusta National at the Masters