New statue to honour Scots golfing legend 

Born in St Andrews in 1821, Old Tom is generally regarded as the world’s first professional golfer and a four-times Open champion. 

New statue to honour St Andrews’ golfing legend Old Tom Morris LDRS

Fife Council has approved plans to place a large bronze statue of local golfing legend Old Tom Morris near the Old Course in St Andrews. 

Old Tom is a golfing legend – sometimes known as the father of the game.

Now, he will be honoured with a statue in Golf Place. 

Born in St Andrews in 1821, Old Tom is generally regarded as the world’s first professional golfer and a four-time Open champion. 

He finished second in the first Open Championship in 1860, and won the Claret Jug in 1861, in 1862, 1864 and 1867. He is buried in the churchyard of St Andrew’s Cathedral.

The bronze statue will stand on the Bow Butts, looking over the Old Course at Old Tom’s house, the shop, the 18th century green, and the Royal and Ancient clubhouse. 

“The statue would enable the ‘Home of Golf’ to recognise not only the golfing achievements of Old Tom Morris, but also the influence he has had on golf and course design throughout the world, including the creation of over 100 golf courses,” a planning statement explained. 

“It is strange that this great man has been honoured at many other golfing venues in the UK and in other countries, but has not been formally recognised in his home town, beside the Old Course, which he helped to shape into the most famous golf course in the world.”

The plans went on to describe the statue as a “wonderful end point” for the Old Tom Morris Trail, and planners expect that the statue will become a “must see” monument that will have a positive impact on the economy in St Andrews. 

The statue will be built by local sculptor David Annand. 

He has designed many statues in the UK and Ireland – including those of John Rattray on Leith Links and Bishop Wardlaw, the founder of St Andrews University. 

The proposals are supported by the Links Trust, the R&A, the St Andrews golf clubs, St Andrews Preservation Trust, Royal Burgh of St Andrews Community Council, St Andrews Pilgrim Foundation, St Andrews Tourism Association, Hotels and Guest Houses Association and by Mrs Sheila Walker and Mr Melvyn Morrow, great great grandchildren of Old Tom Morris.

Fife Council approved the plans this week, allowing Mr Strachan’s plans to honour Old Tom to move forward.

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