Linlithgow link to Ryder Cup

Jewel in the Glen
Jewel in the Glen
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Ed Hodge from Linlithgow is uniquely placed to write his first book.

A lifelong golfer with local knowledge from working at Gleneagles, he used all of these connections to produce 85,000 words linked to 160 images narrating the story of the Ryder Cup and Gleneagles where it all started.

Born in Perthshire it was a natural progression from playing golf with his father and grandfather at Auchterarder to caddying as a teenager and working at the Gleneagles golf office.

‘‘Jewel in the Glen’’ relates the connections between the impressive 90 year old building and the competition beginning with the Great Britain v USA match played in 1921.

Hodge conducted over 80 interviews with golfers from both sides of the Atlantic along with Scottish sportsmen like Sir Jackie Stewart and Stephen Hendry who use the course as a way to relax.

It was a few years back, in 2009, that Hodge realised he might use the writing skills gained as a sports journalist to pen a book about the Ryder Cup and Gleneagles

He accomplished the task by writing at nights when his two small children were asleep.

The book is reverential about the golf competition: ‘Individualism is replaced with a team dynamic on the course; polite applause is replaced with an explosion of football-style noise off it. The Ryder Cup holds us all transfixed. It never ceases to amaze, to provide the unexpected.’ Hodge said: ‘‘After the Commonwealth Games there will be a real buzz about the match at Gleneagles.”

Jack Nicklaus designer of the PGA Centenary Course wrote the foreword for Hodge’s book published by Birlinn Books in 2013 and said: ‘‘I have always thought Gleneagles one of the best places to play golf.’’

As for the next book? Ed says his day job at the Scottish Golf Union keeps him busy enough.