Classic golf images go online in St Andrews

Tony Jacklin and Seve Ballesteros celebrate Europe's victory in 1987 (Photo courtesy of Joseph Levy Charitable Foundation)
Tony Jacklin and Seve Ballesteros celebrate Europe's victory in 1987 (Photo courtesy of Joseph Levy Charitable Foundation)
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The Ryder Cup is in full swing at Gleneagles, with the cream of European golfers battling it out for glory against Team USA.

To mark the biennial competition being back in Scotland again, the University of St Andrews has launched an online collection of more than 1500 photographs by celebrated golf photographer Lawrence Levy.

Sam Torrance wins the 1985 Ryder Cup for Europe_credit Joseph Levy Charitable Foundation

Sam Torrance wins the 1985 Ryder Cup for Europe_credit Joseph Levy Charitable Foundation

The collection has previously unseen photographs of classic Ryder Cup moments, including of Sam Torrance’s winning putt on the last hole of The Belfry in 1985 and returning captain Tom Watson’s victory in 1993.

Lawrence Levy was official photographer for the European Ryder Cup team between 1979 and 1993 so had access both on and off the courses.

Collection cataloguer Trevor Ledger said: “The Lawrence Levy Collection is one of the most complete photographic records of professional golf through the 1980s and 1990s.”

Lawrence Levy devoted the last 20 years of his life to photography, before succumbing to cancer at the age of 47.

His love of golf is evident in his work and he became close friends with the likes of Arnold Palmer, Tom Watson, Greg Norman and Seve Ballesteros, allowing him to capture them in natural, relaxed environments.

As well as capturing the golfers of the era, Levy focused on the other people of the game, including fans, families and media personnel.

He was also a committed humanitarian, establishing and contributing to a number of charitable funds and events including the Lawrence Levy British Blind Golfers Masters tournament.

The University’s Levy collection, donated by the Joseph Levy Foundation, has more 250,000 photographs, 1500 of which were taken at Ryder Cup tournaments.

Of the 250,000 photographs in the collection, more than 10,000 are now available online, and the University’s Special Collections team continues to digitise the original photographs.

Mr Ledger said the Special Collections division was delighted to present the selection of iconic images, along with a fully searchable database of its other historic photographs.

“With the process of digital cataloguing continuing, yet more images from across the collection will be added on a weekly basis,” he said.

The collection can be accessed at www.st-andrews.ac.uk.