William (Willie) Fernie

1857 - 1924

Golfer. Born in St. Andrews, the son of a caddy and one of five golfing brothers. Fernie won his first professional match at the age of fifteen and went on to win the Open Championship at Musselburgh in 1883. He had been runner-up the previous year, and reached the same position in 1884, 1890 and 1891. Fernie began as a greenkeeper at Dumfries in 1880 and then became Club Professional at Felixstowe Ferry in Suffolk in 1884. He moved to become Professional at Royal Troon in 1887, serving in there for 37 years. Fernie was also a noted golf course designer, creating the Ailsa (Old) and Arran (New) courses at Turnberry in 1901 and 1906 respectively and making alterations at Felixstowe Ferry, Royal Troon and to the Old Course at St. Andrews, together with the courses at Abington, Anstruther, Bathgate, Callander, Cardross, Gairloch, Lamlash, Douglas Park (Bearsden), Maybole, Pitlochry, Shiskine (Blackwaterfoot), Strathaven and Wemyss Bay. He also created designs for several courses in England, Ireland and Continental Europe.

Fernie died in Glasgow.

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