AGW MEMBER TRIBUTES
Joined AGW 1965, Awarded Life Membership 2016 & Appointed President in 2018.
Martin Dempster – AGW Chairman
“He’s gone,” said one of my closest friends, Nick Rodger, as I answered the phone on Saturday night before waiting for a short pause to be followed by “I’m only kidding”.
Sadly, he wasn’t. Jock MacVicar was indeed gone, passing away peacefully in Glasgow Royal Infirmary at the age of 83 after being admitted a couple of days earlier following a fall at his home in the city.
Like so many people, I first came across the great man at the Scottish Boys Championship after starting with the Glasgow-based David Begg Sports Agency in 1989. I’d sort of been in his company two years earlier when, during my fledgling days in journalism with the Berwickshire News & East Lothian Advertiser, I spent some time in the press tent during The Open at Muirfield, but didn’t have the courage back then to speak to many people.
One of my first memories of spending time with the Scottish Daily Express legend was when we headed for a game at North Berwick one morning during that Scottish Boys event at Dunbar. His car boot must have had 20 putters in it and I soon found out why out on the course, though I think after all these years he’d have a chuckle to himself to hear that I think he afflicted me on the greens.
I count myself very lucky indeed when I think about the people I shared press rooms in Scotland with in my early years covering this great game, the list including Renton Laidlaw, Ian MacNiven, Alister Nicol, Ian Wood, Norman Mair, Raymond Jacobs, Jack Robertson, John Campbell, Bob Jenkins, Colin Farquharson and Peter Donald. It was an honour and pleasure simply to be in the company of greats in the golf writing industry and the same certainly applies to the man who was known by so many in the game as “The Doyen”.
My numerous trips with MacVicar to events included four Ryder Cups in the US, where, incidentally, he’d enjoyed one of the busiest but also most enjoyable days of his career when filing an inside spread plus pieces for the front and back pages from the 1995 event at Oak Hill at the time he was the golf correspondent for the English edition of the Daily Express as well as his beloved Scottish title.
Our first trip across the pond together was for the 2014 Ryder Cup at Oakland Hills in Detroit, and I will never forget what happened one morning as we were walking out of the media centre en route to the course one morning. Out of the corner of my eye, I could see a bloke making a beeline for us and, sporting the biggest smile you could ever think of, he shouted out: “Jock MacVicar, how the heck are you?” It was none other than Billy Casper, the 1970 Masters champion and three-time major winner.
Even more impressive, and this, to me, summed up his standing in the game, was the sight of Tom Watson walking into a Senior Open media centre on more than one occasion and heading straight for MacVicar to say “hello” before conducting his interview. Jock loved Watson and was equally fond of Paul Lawrie while, in recent years, he’d taken a real shine to young Bob MacIntyre, the pair hitting it off instantly through both being Argyll & Bute boys.
On our last trip to a Ryder Cup, we ended up in an ambulance together as he fell ill the day after we arrived in Paris for the 2018 event. After requiring stomach surgery, we had to leave him in the hospital in Versailles on the Monday after the match finished before staging a successful rescue mission a couple of weeks later through assistance from the European Tour and Aberdeen Standard Investments.
We did that because we loved Jock and we cared about him. He had no immediate family. His colleagues – myself, the aforementioned Nick Rodger, Steve Scott, Jim Black, Euan McLean, Bernie McGuire, Scott Crockett and Stewart McDougall – were his family, I suppose, and that’s why we are all hurting at the moment.
He was a stubborn old bugger. Despite being urged to think seriously about calling it a day after his scare in France, he was still working for the Scottish Daily Express, having been on a video call with MacIntyre last Monday following his success in securing a Masters debut.
He never married but showed real charm in the company of women, though tears will have been shed by grown men as well over the past couple of days amidst a staggering outpouring of sadness.
Golf has lost a great man and some of us have lost a great friend. Angus John MacVicar, though, will never be forgotten by the vast majority of people he came across in life and that says it all.
Rest in Peace, our Doyen.
Golf was Jock MacVicar’s life. And it was a life well lived. To the end, Jock, who passed away peacefully on Saturday at the age of 83, was still filing regular dispatches to the Scottish Daily Express. He’d been doing that, as he would gently chortle, “since the days of Caxton.”
Jock’s longevity was inspiring. His passion for golf and his work, unwavering. He covered his first Open back in 1962 and became as much a part of the game’s oldest major as the Claret Jug itself.
As a colleague, but most importantly, a friend and a mentor to me for the last 20 years, I used to joke that he would out-work us all. When I was made redundant from my full-time post as golf correspondent with The Herald last year, there was some truth in that prophecy.
Covering the game he loved sustained Jock. Golf was good to him. But he was good for golf. From the grassroots of the domestic amateur circuit to the showpiece occasions on the global professional stage, Jock straddled this Royal & Ancient pursuit with terrific authority and boundless enthusiasm.
The tributes that have poured in from all walks of golfing life since his passing speak volumes for a revered journalist but, most of all, a lovely man who was cherished my many. “Speaking to Jock was like speaking to an old friend,” said Colin Montgomerie. Plenty would agree.
Jock was a warm, all-embracing and sociable character whose career spanned the decades. A veteran player at the Senior Open coming up to him and saying, “Christ, you were covering me when I played in the Scottish Boys’ Championship” underlined this startling durability.
Jock’s Tuesday column in the paper that he served with such loyalty, diligence and attention to duty was always a must read. He was Scotland’s Voice of Golf. To his colleagues, he was known fondly as The Doyen. Jock’s considered, informative and engaging copy always provided readers with insight and illumination. He wrote with a balance and a fairness which players and golfing officialdom respected, even if they didn’t particularly agree with his observations.
Even though his last couple of years were hindered by significant physical challenges, Jock’s mental fortitude and unquenchable drooth for his profession endured. In Masters week, there is a poignancy that he will not get to see Oban’s Robert MacIntyre, Scotland’s leading golfer on the world rankings, make his Augusta debut. As a proud, born-and-bred Argyll man himself, Jock had that extra fondness for the young left-hander from his ain’ county.
His regular skirmishes with technology, meanwhile, always kept Jock on his toes and his fellow scribblers royally entertained. Jock seemed to possess more laptops than a PC World warehouse and, like a football manager rotating his starting XI, each one would get an outing before being sidelined amid much muttering condemnation.
A carefully crafted piece suddenly disappearing from his screen at the touch of a button would see companions rally round his computer in the kind of sizeable salvage operation that was akin to raising the Mary Rose.
To his credit, though, Jock welcomed all the various advancements in technology. Nothing made him more happy at an event than a good, strong WiFi signal – and a nice lunch, of course – while the sudden emergence of Zoom and Microsoft Teams in this pandemic-ravaged year took him into fresh, hi-tech territory. He was a game soul.
Writing ran in Jock’s family. His father, Angus, was a prolific wordsmith and penned countless books. Jock preferred the cut-and-thrust of newspapers, however, and the daily deadlines stirred his senses and invigorated his mind. The jovial, glass-clinking camaraderie at the end of the working day, during which we all drank far too much, was a nourishing reward for those endeavours. “I don’t know about the secret to good golf writing, but it is essential that you have a great love of the game and a pretty good constitution to keep going,” he once said.
Jock was certainly built to last but even he couldn’t go on forever. The memories of a true gentleman will live on, though
I have known Jock for more than half my life, 46 years to be exact.
I first met him in the winter of 1975, not, as you might imagine, at a golf tournament but rather on a midweek evening when your paths first crossed in the dingy surroundings of the old Firhill press box where we were huddled along with the pigeons and various unpleasant detritus while covering a football match.
Mercifully, much has changed for the better at Partick Thistle’s stadium in the intervening years.
But one thing that never changed was my fondness for Jock. Yes, he could be a bugger at times with his infuriating habit of ignoring sound advice from colleagues to ease back a little and also pay greater attention to his health.
His insistence that “I need to get something to eat” when what eventually became the Gang of Seven – our chairman Martin Dempster, another of Jock’s dear friends and “minders”, Nick Rodger, Steve Scott, the AGW secretary Bernie McGuire, Euan McLean and myself – were just about to order another round also drove you nuts at times.
But you could never stay annoyed for very long, not even on the evening in Aviemore when Jock was fortunate to procure the last fish supper at the local chipper while the rest of us went hungry and then complained that it was “pure muck”.
Even when he ignored all the warning signs and ventured to France for the Ryder Cup three years ago while clearly far from well and very much against the wishes of his closest colleagues it was impossible to be angry with him.
We got it. Golf was Jock’s life and with no wife or family to go home it was what kept him going until the age of very nearly 84.
But that stubborn determination very nearly cost him his life. But for Martin’s timely intervention and the European Tour’s wonderful support in having Jock admitted to hospital without further delay the obituaries would have been written back in 2018.
A proud Argyll man who never lost is affection for his home village of Southend, Jock returned to the Mull of Kintyre as often as possible and it is where he will be laid to rest alongside his parents in the local cemetery which has a view as far as Northern Ireland coast on a clear day.
It was only fairly recently that he sold the family home in the heart of “God’s country” just a short walk from Dunaverty Golf Club where he was a popular and well kent figure.
Words like legend and doyen are often misused to describe individuals unworthy of either description. Not in Jock’s case.
Everybody who mattered in golf knew Jock, albeit he would often ask: “Who was that?” after responding to a greeting with a cheery “Aye, how are you?” when he clearly didn’t have a bloody clue who he’d just addressed.
It was a measure of Jock’s status in the game that he was known and recognised across the globe by the great and good and the not so great.
Tom Watson walking into a press conference prior to a Senior Open and saying: “Hi, Jock. What’s happening?” said it all, really.
Jock died in harness, as it were. Just five days before his sudden passing he participated in a video call with Bob MacIntyre and he left us still as the Scottish Daily Express’ golf columnist. I’m glad about that.
The glowing tributes from across the world, the hundreds of thousands of social media hits, the clear evidence of the emotions experienced by his closest friends and colleagues sum up just how much we will miss him.
Not only was he an authoritative and knowledgeable writer on the game, he was a fascinating character who was always in good company, entertaining and very funny at times – though I’m not altogether sure the humour was always intended!
After my dear friend Dougie Lowe passed away in 2011 I recall my first tournament back at St Andrews, where the pair of us had spent so many weeks of our lives covering golf, drinking, eating fish suppers at one in the morning and feeding the seagulls, and it just wasn’t the same.
It hasn’t been since and I fear golf tournaments will never be quite so enjoyable again without Jock’s presence.
But at least we’ll have Nick to bring Jock back to life with his wonderful impressions of the man who had appeared immortal.
The past few days have felt surreal, as if I’ve been walking about in a fog of disbelief. I suspect that feeling will persist for a long time to come.
So, too, will the memories.
Sir Michael Bonallack OBE – AGW Vice President
That is very sad news, Martin. I have always held Jock in the highest regard and loved meeting him. A true gentleman in every sense of the word who had a wonderful career. He will be greatly missed by all who knew him.
I would also like to acknowledge how well his Scottish colleagues looked after Jock in recent years. This type of comraderie is rare these days and thoroughly commendable.
I will certainly raise a glass to “The Doyen” this evening. May he Rest In Peace.
Mark Garrod – Past AGW Secretary
Like so many of us I shared so many happy times with Jock over the course of our much-travelled careers, but how many of us can also say they shared a bed with him?
I feel the need to explain. The year was 1995 (thanks to Wikipedia for that) and it followed the Irish Open at Mount Juliet, where Sam Torrance had just beaten Howard Clark and Stuart Cage in a play-off. Needless to say Jock was in a good mood (when wasn’t he?) after he filed his story of Scottish triumph over English failures. I can’t remember whether we were sharing a hire car or just arrived at the Dublin airport hotel at the same time, but as we signed in and took our separate room keys Clark came through the door in search of a bed for the night, having missed his flight because of the play-off. He was told the hotel was full, but Jock and I took pity on him (don’t know why – he’d still earned what to us was a fortune) and agreed that we could share and he could have the other.
We might have hoped for single beds as we entered, but it was a double and, given that it was late and I still had to write my follow-up for the Monday evening papers, we couldn’t be bothered to go back to reception to see if there was any alternative. And so it came to pass that we slept together, albeit for only a few hours as I was on the first flight out in the morning.
That was one of the shorter trips, of course. Around that time the European Tour had started to spread its wings all over the world and, unlike some papers, the Scottish Daily Express wanted their man to go wherever the action was and their man was the one and only Jock. As another tournament dawned it was a case of “Jock’s away” again.
There are so many memories I could write about. I’ll limit this to one more. We were out in the Far East somewhere and it was during the Six Nations. England were playing Scotland and I was desperate not to know the score before I got back home, so as people arrived in the media room I let it be known that if they discovered the result then please keep it to themselves or at least don’t discuss it while I was within earshot. To my amazement I got through the entire final round of whatever event it was and was packing up to head for the airport. Jock was doing the same, but in signing off with his desk blurted out “so Scotland won – brilliant”. He didn’t do it intentionally, of course, because there was never any malice in Jock. A great colleague, a great reporter, a great loss.
I am proud to share Jock’s Daily Express heritage. In my first Fleet Street post as a sub on the sports desk it was always a pleasure to be handed Jock’s copy. It was without fail clean as a whistle, perfectly pitched, all in the right order and invariably centred on some called Colin Montgomerie. Since Monty had multiple personalities, there was always a new angle and always treated sympathetically by an author across all aspects of his subject. Jock’s copy also had the advantage of not being written by his colleagues on the football beat whose mangled syntax made big football nights a torment.A gentleman to the end Jock will be sadly missed.
The Easter Sunday morning sun was warming Whitbread towers until it was replaced by the blackest of clouds as i read Martin Dempster’s sad email message that our old AGW chum Jock MacVicar had passed away on Saturday having been taken into hospital following a fall at home earlier last week.Jock was a terrific all round character, a great colleague in the Press tent and a wonderful companion outside. I remember so clearly how he, along with Michael McDonnell, Ron Wills and Richard Dodd proved such an invaluable mentor to this raw recruit when I joined the AGW in 1981. Jock was also a great guide as I learned to appreciate Spanish Riojas and gained a whole lot more general knowledge in his company.,A first class golf writer, Jock could also play very well. I remember how he carried me through a foursomes match at The Berkshire until I managed somehow to hole a monster putt at the last to win our game and the entire match for the AGw. Lovely memories and i know the Media Centres will seem a lot greyer without him. Thanks a lot Jock.
Renton Laidlaw – Past AGW President, Chairman & Secretary
Like so many I am saddened by the loss of our President Jock McVicar.
For over 50 years he worked for the “Scottish Daily Express’ turning down an offer to move to London to the “Daily Express” because he felt that Fleet Street was not his scene. His decision had an influence on my life because the “Express” persuaded a reluctant Mark Wilson, the golf correspondent of the “Express’s” sister paper the” London Evening Standard” to take over the job first offered to Jock. My good luck was that I was hired to replace Mark as the “Standard” golf writer.
Jock enjoyed his life in Glasgow from where he could make irregular trips down to his other home at Southend – not the one in Kent but the one on the tip of the Mull of Kintyre close by Machrihanish and to his favourite Dunaverty, a course he always enjoyed playing. Staying in Scotland also gave him the chance to watch Motherwell FC.
Though just why he did not choose to support Rangers, Celtic or Patrick Thistle (whose ground was close to his city centre apartment) remains a mystery.
Jock, son of prolific author and playwright Angus McVicar, was also a wine connoisseur and in his spare time often went off to the Continent on wine -tasting trips. His dedication to golf earned him a ‘Lifetime Achievement’ award from the Scottish PGA and, until recently, he was continuing to travel abroad on assignment and do regular columns for his paper.
I would like to recall an incident that occurred at Versailles in France round the corner from where the French Revolution was plotted in the late 18th century. Jock was enjoying a refreshment in a bar there and had been persuaded by some locals to take part in a soccer match on a specially constructed pin table.
You can imagine the scene of six men – three on each side working the rods in an effort to score goals. Innocent enough you might think until an over enthusiastic Jock, had a chance to score. Instead of hitting the ball, however, he blew out his front denture and sent it down the chute that collects the balls. Maybe that could have counted as a somewhat unusual goal or maybe not but what was certain was that the teeth were firmly stuck.
Play had to be abandoned for an hour while the locals did their best to retrieve his plate by man-handling and ending the heavy football table. Play resumed when the teeth finally fell out but Jock was no longer a welcome guest at the table. He had been given a Carte Rouge by the other players!
So sorry to hear of Jock’s passing. He was always good company whenever our paths crossed but it wasn’t that often in recent years.
I used to catch up with him at the Open each year when I was working and at various major amateur events when I was Press Officer for the English Golf Union.
He was always good company and I used to call him MacIver which I believe followed an occasion when I mis-spelt his name, probably when I was arranging the AGW Dinner at the Open.
I hadn’t seen him for a few years but I can still recall his smooth Scottish tones. RIP old friend. There won’t be another like you.
Jock’s first act connected with me was to forget to book my accommodation for the 1989 Open at Troon. So I spent the week staying with the local vicar and his family, which was the only room available. But I quickly forgave him for that and when I started covering golf full-time five years later, we shared so many dinners, wines, whiskies, laughs, stories and escapades at event across the world I can barely count them all.
I was proud to be one of his “boys” in the Scottish golf writing contingent. There was a special bond with Jock for Martin, Nick, Jim (and occasionally Euan) and I. It was – is – a family.
Jock had no actual family, as you all probably know. But the depth of feeling towards him was never better illustrated when Martin and I (with the incredible help of the AGW, the Tour and Aberdeen Standard Investments) went to Paris to bring him home after his illness at the Ryder Cup in 2018. All the way home our phones were deluged with messages of love, concern and goodwill from all over the golfing world, players, officials, colleagues, rivals, admirers.
When we finally got him back to Scotland, he was being assessed at A&E in the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital in Glasgow, which mercifully had agreed to take him. He was weak and exhausted by the day, but we had a couple of hours while we waited and I read to him all the messages we’d got during the day. His spirits were visibly lifted hearing them all. I genuinely believe that helped him get back on his feet at least for a few more years.
Jock did have a family, and it was larger than any you could imagine.
So sorry to hear of the passing of an old friend and deeply respected colleague. Given that I’m 80, our venerable status often arose in the chats Jock and I had in recent years. We’d eye each other up and remark cheerily: “You’re looking good. Any thoughts of retirement?” We last met at Royal Portrush for the 2019 Open, when, sadly, Jock was beginning to show the years. I thought highly of him as a colleague whom I first got to know more than 40 years ago, during the Men’s Amateur Golf Home Internationals at Royal Dornoch. As we say in Gaelic: Ar dheis De go raibh a anam (may his soul rest on the right hand of God).
Having had the pleasure of working within the golfing world over the last 20 years, there were few kinder, more knowledgeable people to come across than Jock MacVicar.
One of a close-knit Scottish golf ‘pack,’ there was always a cheery welcome, that winning smile and a ‘how you doing Hodgey?’
Our paths had crossed a few times before, but it was during my time doing PR & Comms at Scottish Golf from 2011-17 where I spent the most days in his company – on and off the course.
Looking back, I’m so pleased we honoured Jock and his fellow Dunaverty ‘legend’ Belle Robertson with a Lifetime Achievement Award at the Scottish Golf Awards back in 2017, fittingly in his 80th year. What a pleasure it was pulling video footage together with Craig Martin at WeFilmGolf from Jock’s old pals on a wonderful trip to the remote south-west club. Dunaverty almost had a mythical appeal, given how regularly Jock talked of this far-flung location, and it’s worth the journey for any avid golfer.
As golf lovers, we all savour the chance to attend the big events, but for me I’ll look back on my ‘intimate’ tie together with Jock and the Scottish scribes in a portakabin at a Scottish Boys, Girls or Scottish Amateur down the years. Whether it was chewing the golfing fat with Jock, discussing the merits of various biscuits, assisting with the WIFI code or handing over a much-cherished lunch voucher to him, Jock was among the best company you could keep.
It was at one such event where perhaps my best memory of Jock and the laughs we often generated comes from. Bubba Watson had just memorably won the 2012 Masters and there we were at Murcar Links for the Scottish Boys chatting to a lad named Robert MacIntyre, as he started to make some headlines in the amateur ranks.
Here he comes ‘Bubba Watson!’ we all joked together, as this other left-hander came to our attention. It became a talking point for the week, all playful fun with our own Bubba. Remarkable to think that young lad from Glencruitten is now one of the world’s best players and making his own Augusta bow. How proud Jock was to see Bob’s career develop.
In his passing, the outpouring of affection for Jock across social media would have brought a wee smile, but also a ‘I don’t want any fuss now’ from the great man.
I’ve thought of Martin Dempster, Steve Scott and Nick Rodger most in recent days, given their bond with him and the fact they worked so hard to aid him in his first serious health scare back in 2018. Nick, especially, has kept a close counsel with Jock during these challenging COVID-19 times and I look forward to raising a glass to ‘The Doyen’ with Nick and co. in a Glasgow bar when the time comes. Ar’ the best, Jock.
Terrible news. Nobody loved golf more. Or writing about it. Or knew the game better. Or loved playing it more. A charming gentleman of the old school. And a joy to play golf with.I was lucky to have that privilege only rarely but treasure every moment spent in his company.
Have just had a wee dram to celebrate the life of a fine colleague and a truly lovely man.
David Duran (Ten Golf)
Jock, a few buckets of balls left to ship
Jock MacVicar (Campbeltown, 1937) has a fiery memory at the age of 81: German planes flying over his village, in the peninsular lands of western Scotland, bound for Belfast, a target of terror and death. He was barely four years old, but that traumatic indentation remains vast and indelible …
At 81, Jock MacVicar is the oldest journalist in this 147th edition of the British
Fortunately, not all memory indentations hurt. Some even soften and vivify. For example, that of his first British Open at Royal Troon (1962), with Arnold Palmer as the winner. Because Jock, let’s clarify, is a journalist for the Scottish Express and the oldest in this 147th edition of the British.
Jock: “Over fifty British Open, I think I’ve only missed two or three since that first one at Royal Troon”
MacVicar , a more than acceptable amateur player, trained from a very young age on the Scottish links (it became handicap 5), has covered fifty-odd editions of the British Open. He was about to miss this year’s one, still convalescing from a severe injury to his right shoulder, after slipping on the snow last March (he was one of the thousands of victims of the ‘Beast from the East’ , the brutal climatic disturbance that ravaged Scotland this year). Until the accident a few months ago he still regularly went to the driving range to hit his ration of balls, although unfortunately he senses that he has come this far, just as his shoulder feels. “Over fifty British Open, I think I’ve only missed two or three since that first one at Royal Troon,” he says.
More notches: your favorite edition to choose among so was that of the Duel to the Sun of 1977 in Turnberry between Nicklaus and Watson . Also these two American players, in this order, Jack and Tom, are his favorites among so much experience, chronicle and information. There is one more that would close his particular holy trinity of the Open: Severiano Ballesteros . And as the earth throws its own, he admits that he attended with special emotion the triumphs of his countrymen, Sandy Lyle (1985) and Paul Lawrie (1999).
He refuses to mummify himself in the classic motto of ‘any time past was better’, but he remembers with undisguised nostalgia that picture of the Irishman Christy O’Connor arriving at the 1st tee with a glass of black zaino coffee in hand …
Jock honors us with his presence at the foot of the canyon. Also with his affection, kindness and kindness. At your feet, Mr. MacVicar. Seeing you around here in Carnoustie , shoulder-to-shoulder and whatever it takes, tough, from another tough and honest school (oh, this half-truth journalism, abducted by click and rude and intentional decontextualization), we’re sure that he still has a few cubes of balls to dispatch.
Also Read – https://ten-golf.com/es/blogs/firma-invitada/del-calderillo-a-jock-macvicar/ & https://ten-golf.com/es/grandes-circuitos/european-tour/la-primera-vez-que-vi-a-seve-fue-en-royal-birkdale-en-1976/
Bob Davies – Past AGW Treasurer
I was so sad to hear that our President, Jock MacVicar, has passed away.
Our paths crossed for the first time, long before I was admitted as a member of the AGW, when I was invited to a lunch in London to celebrate Sandy Lyle being nominated as the White Horse whiskey golfer of the year. I sat next to Jock and that was the foundation of a friendship I have treasured for all the years since.Jock was always so amenable and I can’t ever recall him expressing a bad word about anyone.
I’m not aware whether he had any family, but if he did perhaps you would be kind enough to pass on my condolences. Regards, Bob
Isabel Trillo Amores
So so sad news!!He was a very good friend, always help me, always support me, always understood my ‘spanglish’. One of the first ‘guiris’ friends, even before Im be ‘one of the chap’.Great memories in Volvo Masters and Spanish Open in Madrid when Im trying to be a night guide and show him, and my friends, tipycal restaurant and spanish food.
I loved listen his stories about golf, about Seve… He is now part of the Big Golf Life.Im going to miss him a lot, his broken voice and his scottish acent too. Always ready for a party, for a adventure, for a funny joke. Jock was this kind of journalist you always found in a Media Center and you thouhgt he was an Inmortal, like Sean Connery
I Will always remember you, darling Jock. Un sabio dijo que “la Vida de los que se van está en el recuerdo de los que se quedan
Alistair Tait (AlistairTaitGolf)
Thanks for the memories Jock
Jock MacVicar never married. There was no room in his life for a wife. He was wedded to the game of golf.
Angus Jock MacVicar passed away yesterday at Glasgow’s Royal Infirmary hospital. He was 83. I hope I still have his love for this stick and ball game if I ever reach that age.
Many reading this might not have heard of Jock MacVicar. Anyone who plays golf in Scotland knew him and knew him well. Jock, who was president of the Association of Golf Writers, spent decades covering Scottish golf. He was still covering Scottish golfers on the European Tour via zoom calls. As AGW chairman Martin dempster said in announcing Jock’s death, he was planning on writing about this week’s Masters.
“Jock was still working for his beloved Scottish Daily Express and this news has left myself and his other Scottish colleagues deeply saddened, as will be the case with so many others in the game”
You only had to read the tributes on twitter to know the esteem with which Jock was held.
Many of us who have covered the game for a wee while dislike the term “influencer.” Most of us have no qualms about anyone new coming into the game or media centres. I certainly don’t. Golf is big enough to accept anyone who expresses an interest and a love for it. The more the merrier, I say. But the word “influencer” seems to bestow an almost instant importance on said recipient, as if they are somehow more important than others in the press tent.
Well, Jock MacVicar was an influencer long before the term was invented. He joined the AGW in 1965, and for over 50 years passionately chronicled Scottish golf. All of Scottish golf. Not just the professional game. Not just the men’s game. Jock was just as happy writing about amateurs as he was penning columns on professionals, as passionate about telling people about the exploits of Scottish women as men.
Along with European Tour events, I had the privilege of covering numerous Amateur Championships and Lytham Trophies with Jock, back in the day when most newspapers actually cared about amateur golf. Myself, Jock, Dave Birtill and Nick Rodger covered the tournament annually. We spent many happy meals together with former Titleist employee Jonathan Loosemore, talking golf and sharing laughs.
It’s a comfort to know Nick and former Open Championship press officer Stewart McDougall, two of his closest friends, were with Jock when he died.
We called Jock “The Doyen.” There wasn’t much about Scottish golf Jock didn’t know. He was on a first name basis with all of Scotland’s golf stars, from Sam Torrance to Colin Montgomerie to Paul Lawrie to Catriona Matthew and even newbie Bob MacIntyre. Ditto for those who ran the game in the Home of Golf. He will be remembered fondly by everyone.
Jock never displayed an ounce of arrogance, never took himself too seriously. Indeed, he didn’t mind a wee bit of self-deprecation from time to time.
I’ll remember the laughs. His pronunciation of aspaRAYgus in a Spanish restaurant cracked up the entire table. Once during lunch while covering the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship he asked a colleague what he was eating. Chicken pie was the answer, to which Jock replied: “Is it vegetarian?”
Once at an Amateur Championship he looked at his watch and said: “Four o’clock, and not a dish washed.” A wee bit of writer’s block methinks, but Jock still produced a story worth reading for the next day’s newspaper. Jock did that well throughout his life.
Percy Huggins once said this about former Golf Illustrated editor Tom Scott. “He was non-stop in his devotion to the game.” The sentence also applies to Jock McVicar.
Wish there were more words still to flow from his Jock’s laptop. All of Scottish golf does.
Thanks for the memories Jock. R.I.P. The Doyen.
Lewine Mair – Past AGW Chairman
A gentle giant among sportswriters
There are some hard hacks in the sports-writing world but Jock MacVicar was not among them. He was a gentle journalist who kept The Scottish Daily Express informed about the world of golf by treating everyone with respect and knowing his subject inside out. He could be critical where necessary, though I never met anyone who thought he was less than fair.
Jock was engrossed in his job but he also knew how to relax and would never spoil someone else’s dinner – or his own – by fretting over some trivial error he felt he might have made in his report. He would enjoy the odd glass of wine, while he never failed to entertain his dinner-time companions with recollections drawn from a career spanning seven decades.
Like his famous fiction-writing father, Angus, Jock had time for everyone. By way of an example, whenever he turned up at one of the regular stopping points on the European Tour in the days of hand-done scoreboards, he would recognise all the people who had been manning the boards the previous year. As often as not, he would remember them by name. Again, when some old friend arrived in the press tent for a chat at a stage when he had a deadline to meet, he was able to do the difficult thing of dispatching them in a way which did not give offence.
Just as he had the utmost respect for the players, so they had the same for him. Indeed, in the aftermath of the 2018 Ryder Cup where he was taken ill, Scottish players who were summoned for a press conference would often hold back from talking about themselves to ask, “How’s Jock?”
Players, press, administrators and so forth are going to miss this great old soldier. He was endlessly brave in the way he tackled ‘the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune’ which caught up with him in old age, and he was a first-class President of the AGW for the short time he was at the helm. How sad that he was not in that position for longer.
Really said news to wake up to today.
I may not have known Jock as well as many other members but one incident sticks in mind.
It was the R&A media day at Royal Birkdale in 2017 and I’d had a good day at the office as they say.
Jock came up to congratulate me on my win and said: “Enjoy every minute because they don’t come round too often and you never know what the future holds.”
He was a man of few words but when he spoke you listened because they were always worth their weight in gold.
When someone with his experience takes time out to pass on some words of wisdom you are honour bound to heed them.
Jock was everything you’ll read about him in tributes, a doyen, terrific writer and great archivist of golf but to me he was my touring pal. I’ve known him for around 40 years, but we became close friends shortly after he decided to conquer his fear of flying; somewhere in the early ’90s I’d guess. He decided he should be covering the European Tour on a regular basis then and we soon formed an unlikely duo. There was Jock, one of the old school, calm and level-headed; me, volatile and unpredictable, doing everything at 100mph.
He eventually forgot about his dread of flying, rather worrying about what trouble I might get us into at the airport or whether once again he’d forgotten to pick up his laptop from the tray on the security belt, something he did on several occasions. We dropped into a regular routine for the tournament weeks: good hotels, restaurant locations, courtesy car availability… I was always delighted to see his face at the airport when we met up on Wednesday mornings, catching up, often on our football teams, his the ‘Well and mine the Foxes.
We’d have different agendas for the working week. Jock always had to “put a kilt” around any story he was writing (he didn’t take too kindly to me referring to it as “putting a skirt” around it). We combined our resources often, especially over Monty stories. Then when work was finished it was a glass in the bar before getting ready for a night out. And we had some rare old nights out, inevitably sharing tables with Bernie, Otters, Mark Garrod and Gordon Richardson and the tour press officers, on a regular basis.
He loved wine, so part of the enjoyment of the evening was choosing the tipple. Jock knew a lot about wine and when he took his winter’s break he would go off on wine trips with a pal abroad who shared his enthusiasm for the grape. Jock was also an expert on single malts; he gave me all his knowledge. He loved The MacAllan, Springbank and Highland Park especially. A dram was always on the cards last thing. “Shall we take one for the stairs?” was the call.
Like me, Jock loved to shop. Most weeks involved a shopping trip. One week in Italy, he forgot his jacket when there was a big occasion on, and we went in search of one. He was hesitating over a brightish dog-tooth number, a little daring for Jock. When I suggested it looked like one Arthur Daley was selling in an episode of ‘Minder’ we’d both watched, his mind was made up. Whenever there was a gala dinner on at an event, he’d let me know: “Got the Arthur Daley packed”. We regularly shared Tommy Cooper and Billy Connelly jokes too.
We had similar senses of humour. I remember one night on the Algarve, after dinner, listening to the ‘turn’ in the hotel. The singer was going through the card: from Frank Sinatra (Jock’s favourite,”his timing was unsurpassed”) to Engelbert Humperdinck. When I said the lad could be at home in a Glasgow pub at closing time, it tickled him and we both nearly got thrown out for helpless laughter.
Regrettably for Jock, my accident-proneness rubbed off. He somehow locked his car with engine running and, unable to get access, had to trek some distance to knock someone up to phone the AA while his engine overheated big time.
Cars were never good to him, especially during Irish tournaments. He had several escapades with his cars bogged solidly and immovably in mud. One night he came to my room ashen faced, revealing he’d trashed his hire car. He’d parked it in the hotel’s underground car park, then, as he headed for the lift, looked back to see the car on the move. He’d left the hand-brake off. As he wrestled the door open the car picked up speed and hit a pillar, almost wrenching the door off. He had to drive to the hire car company the next day, one hand on the wheel and the other on the buckled door. Luckily, he had taken out insurance.
There are so many stories I could relate about our weeks on tour. We never stopped laughing, even when we missed flights for things like lava dust storms or the eternal rain delays. I can’t believe he’s gone. Goodbye old pal. We’ll be having “one for the stairs” on you.
Have attached some pics Bernie. The first 2 could caption: ‘Jock and I at our last tournament together in Valderrama 2011′. Then: Jock giving the thumb up his nose to Gordon Richardson’s choice of restaurant’. Then ‘Jock in thoughtful pose in an Algarve Marina restaurant, while finishing off a coffee and brandy. We were the last ones in the place as usual.’
I feel both honoured and grateful to have had Jock MacVicar as a friend and colleague, and it is so sad to think he has gone.
I vividly remember our first meeting. It was during my initial few days working for David Begg Sports Promotions and I was covering a British Women’s Amateur Championship at Royal Troon.
The weather was terrible – wet and windy – and the Press contingent were housed in a Portakabin. It was also my first encounter with Alister Nicol (Daily Record), Raymond Jacobs (The Herald) and Jackie Robertson (The Evening Times). Each and every one could not have been kinder. They were generous with advice, friendship and support and I went on to enjoy sharing their company, be it a working or social occasion.
The last time I saw Jock was at the Solheim Cup at Gleneagles. Despite his health problems, he was still dedicated to the cause, producing wondrous prose and brimming with the same enthusiasm as he had all those years earlier at Troon.
During the intervening 35 years, I became to view Jock as one of the really good guys. He was a true gentleman, treated everyone with the same respect and was second to none in his love and knowledge of the wonderful game of golf.
He will be sadly missed at tournaments and golfing events all over the world – a true legendary figure. One nice thought – maybe he can now join Alister, Raymond and Jackie for a very pleasurable four ball?
I came late into the world of sports journalism, and in particular the realm of golf writing, but I was oh so fortunate, that memorable day 25 years ago, when I first met the redoubtable Jock MacVicar.
I was in my early 40’s at the time but very much a ‘rookie’ in this game, so to be told by the legendary ‘Doyen’ at my first Open that anything he could do to help or guide me along the way, I need only ask, gave me a massive boost.
If truth be told I did much of my learning just watching Jock, and to be fair, other respected Scottish golf writers, such as Martin Dempster, Steve Scott, Nick Rodger, Jim Black, Euan Mclean and of course, the late Dougie Lowe, going about their daily business, only asking questions when appropriate.
Jock was never happier than when in the company of his peers and I remember with fondness, not only numerous Opens, but also Scottish Opens at Loch Lomond and Castle Stuart, the occasional Northern Open, particularly at Carnegie Links at Skibo Castle and for me most memorably, a clutch of Challenge Tour events at Spey Valley in Aviemore.
Those evenings in the heart of the Highlands were joyous affairs, especially the traditional Thursday Curry Night, hosted by our friends at Bounce Sports Management, the meal always preceded a bit of a session back at our hotel with Jock, surrounded by his ‘family’, holding court until the wee sma’ hours.
They broke the mould with Jock MacVicar – we really will never see his like again.
RIP my friend!
Spending time in Jock MacVicar’s company was always a privilege and an absolute pleasure. His passion for golf, engaging personality and natural Scottish charm were captivating.
It was a real pleasure to play golf with Jock a couple of times – at Celtic Manor and Dundonald – and to spend social time in his company at the AGW Home Internationals.
Another lovely memory is the few minutes we spent chatting during the AGW Awards Dinner at Royal Portrush Golf Club in July 2019.
Farewell to a true gentleman.
After a series of positive encounters during his Ryder Cup captaincy I dubbed Tom Lehman “the 2nd loveliest man in golf”. The inevitable follow up question was as obvious as its answer. Jock, of course, was No1. We’ve lost a legend, a leader and a dear friend
I first met Jock in the mid ‘80s. I had recently joined Golf Monthly and, at 23, knew the square root of diddley squat.
Despite this I was assigned to cover the PGA Championship at Wentworth and was staying at a hotel in Staines – think it was the Thames Lodge.
Knowing I was a little wet around the ears – a genuine understatement – I was brought into the fold by Jock and the rest of the Scottish golf writing hierarchy – Jock, Alistair, Raymond, Renton and co – and I was soon picking up advice at a similar rate to picking up a glass. Sitting around a dinner table with them was a privilege I never ever took for granted.
I also know that I wasn’t special. Jock and the rest were equally welcoming and generous to every rookie golf writer, before or after, and we were all so grateful to tap into a collective reservoir of knowledge, perhaps unrivalled anywhere.
I drifted away from mainstream tournament golf and with it regular contact with Jock, but whenever I saw him he was, as he always was, and that, for a “bit part player” like myself, was lovely.
It’s some sad news for all the AGW Members, but far more than that among the golfing fans. I’m pretty much hurt by the passing of “Le Doyen” who was always all smile for me as one of the very few French speaking AGW members, exchanging ideas about the Common Market or the Brexit he wasn’t to fond of. A great fellow indeed. RIP dear Jock.
Donald Steel – Past AGW President & Treasurer
My tribute to Jock is simple and to the point. “One of the world’s great guys, one of the AGW’s absolute best. He made only friends”.
Derek Lawrenson – Past AGW Chairman
Good luck with finding someone who had a bad word to say about Jock MacVicar. There’d be more chance of seeing litter strewn across the 18th green at the Masters this week.
When I first started out on the circuit in 1983 he was part of a venerable corps of Scottish golf writers who were not only exceptional at their job but generous with their time.
Why would they take under their wing a shy 23 year old working for the Birmingham Post, making him feel not only welcome but extending an open invitation to join them for dinner whenever I wanted?
Jock was in his element on such social occasions, of course. He loved the job but he loved the company of golf writers even more. ‘One for the stairs’ should be written on his grave.
One of the enduring memories of more than half a lifetime in Jock’s company was at the golf writers Home Internationals played over the grand links of Royal Porthcawl. We took on the home side’s maverick combination of Peter Corrigan and Martin Johnson, who were such entertaining opponents they specialised in laughing you off the course
Those unfamiliar with the match should be warned copious amounts of strong drink precede the golf. This fine morning after, the Welsh pair, happily, were in an even more fragile state than the Scots and we walked onto the tenth tee a whopping five up. If this seemed like an unassailable lead, the emergence of Martin,a decent golfer, from the dwam of a late night, not to mention the persistent supply of shots to Peter,who was less of a maestro, soon saw the tide turn. In fact, we were swept out to sea and never made it to land at the 18th, losing 2&1. As we stumbled into the clubhouse bar, Jock, unflappable as ever, summarised the morning’s desperate events with his usual clarity. “I think we peaked too soon….”
As a golf writer, though, Jock never had that problem. He reached a peak at a tender age and just kept going for the rest of his career. A tenacious reporter with a generous spirit, he was a gentleman journalist during an era when consideration and respect were not as valued attributes as they once were. And he could put a kilt on any story !
Some of us work to live. Jock, on the other hand, lived to work. A lifelong bachelor, he was married to golf and the game loved him back dearly. His was, by any measure, a grand life.
To have known Jock MacVicar and to have spent so much time in his company was a pleasure and a privilege. It wasn’t only Jock’s in-depth knowledge and passion for golf that was so impressive and his respect for all who played the game, he viewed life through an irresistible sense of humour, and as appealing a Scottish accent as I ever encountered. I know of no other more admired or popular golf journalist on the planet than Jock and many are the indelible memories of him I shall treasure. A true Scottish gent.
John Hopkins – Past AGW Chairman
Jock McVicar and I had a habit when we saw each other. I would say “helloooo Hamish” in a cod Scottish way and in return he would put on his most pukka voice and say “hello Hoppy” using his best BBC pronunciation. He might add “how’s Justin Rose?” because there was a time when he thought I wrote about no one other than Rose.
However silly this exchange was, it brought a smile to our faces. Jock was a hero of mine not just for the longevity of his career but for his devotion to his craft of reporting and writing right to the end. In an age when fewer and fewer journalists do this, Jock was outstanding.
Hamish, my old friend, goodbye.
Farewell the doyen of Scottish golf
By John Hopkins, Global Golf Post
By your name shall you be known and by his name he was indeed known. He was simply “Jock”. Many people wouldn’t have known his surname and, if they did, they probably couldn’t spell it.
Whether to Tom Watson or Billy Casper or almost anyone in golf, he was Jock, the doyen, the Voice of Scottish golf and his death at the age of 83 was mourned throughout golf as few are. “We have lost one of the very best,” Peter Dawson, former chief executive of the R &A, said. This is Jock MacVicar, a man who hated Maris Piper potatoes because they were ever present on menus and joked that his close friendship with fellow golf writer Norman Dabell was jeopardised because Dabell had lived in Lincolnshire, a county known for its production of that type of potato. The Jock MacVicar who dislikedbagels because he couldn’t put butter on them. The Jock MacVicar who pronounced the green vegetable “As-pa-RAY-gus.” The Jock MacVicar who, when he received flyers describing Global Golf Post as “a must read”, would turn to his colleagues and say: “Why must I read it? If I want to I will. Why must I?” He loved jazz, red wine, youthful company, Macallan and Springbank malt whiskies and if all were present he was content. “We were in this nightclub during the 2004 Ryder Cup,” Martin Dempster, the golf correspondent of The Scotsman, said. “And he turned to me and said: ‘I hate this music. Can’t they put on some Ella Fitzgerald’”?
Euan McLean, the former Sunday Mail golf writer, said: “On the Saturday night of the 2011 Open we were in a nightclub in Deal. The air was thick with sweat and rap music was blaring when who should come in but Jock who was then surrounded by people who were a quarter of his age. Jock would go anywhere with friends. He never as one to end a party. He’d say “yin [one] for the stairs,” meaning a drink to take upstairs. Trouble is it was usually more than one.”
Jock MacVicar, long time golf and football correspondent for Express Newspapers, was the leader of a very close group of Scots which as well as Dempster and McLean included Steve Scott of the Courier, Jim Black of the Scottish Sun, Nick Rodger, golf correspondent of the Glasgow Herald, and Stewart McDougall, formerly the Open Championship press officer. They were devoted to MacVicar as were so many who loved him, though not only, for his friendliness.
Bob MacIntyre, in his first Masters, wore a black armband in tribute to Jock MacVicar, his fellow Argyll and Bute Scot. “My standard greeting to him for 20 years was, ‘Well, bless my stars, Jock, you’ve lived another year,’” Steve Eubanks, the American golfwriter, said. “To which he always replied, ‘So they say.’ I guess I thought that banter would go on forever.” McLean added: “The first time I walked into a press centre at a golf tournament this benevolent elderly gentleman came over to me to introduce himself and offer to help me. He was our figurehead, a mascot.”
Some aspects of modern life confounded MacVicar. He and cars didn’t really get on. He locked his keys inside one, left his wallet at home and had to get a taxi there and back in order to pay the rental fee on another. Another time he forgot to put the handbrake on, and a car door was ripped off as it rolled backwards. He was always losing his way. A colleague joked that MacVicar at the wheel of a car could be “overtaken by a bicycle.” Nor did he get on with aeroplanes. During national service in Cyprus, MacVicar had to jump out of a burning helicopter. That left him with scars on his upper body and started a fear of flying that was compounded in 1974 when he flew to Pescara, Italy, to cover a Scotland B football game. The game was abandoned because of heavy rain and the landing and take-off in Pescara so frightening that MacVicar didn’t fly for 20 years.
Then over dinner in the Royal Golf hotel at Dornoch during the 1993 Scottish Amateur, Peter de Savary, then the owner of the Carnegie Club at nearby Skibo Castle, offered MacVicar some Ativan pills to help calm his fear of flying. They worked. “After that, bloody hell, there was no stopping him” Dempster said. “He went to PGA Cups, Ryder and Solheim Cups in the US, to the Masters, the Johnnie Walker in Thailand. He loved Dubai. He was the Sheikh of Al Barsha.”
Renton Laidlaw, the golf writer and TV commentator, recalls a story about a MacVicar misadventure in Paris. “Jock, enjoying a
refreshment in a bar in Versailles, had been persuaded by some locals to take part in a table soccer match,” Laidlaw said. “Imagine the scene. Six men, three on each side, working the rods in an effort to score goals. Innocent enough, you might think, until an over-enthusiastic Jock had a chance to score. Instead of kicking the ball, however, he blew out his front denture and sent it down the chute that collects the balls. “Play had to be abandoned for an hour while the locals man-handled and upended the heavy football table, doing their best to retrieve Jock’s plate. Play resumed when the teeth finally fell out, but Jock was no longer a welcome guest at the table. He had been given a ‘carte rouge’.”
For a man who had led such a glorious life, the end was inglorious. Late last month neighbours noticed his newspapers were lying outside the door of his flat in Glasgow’s West End. Calls from friends went unanswered. Wobbling uncertainly about his flat on Wednesday 24 March MacVicar had clutched at a radiator, pulled it down as he fell and lay there for 12 hours or more unable to get up. Nick Rodger got to the flat first in the early afternoon of the next day and kicked the door down. He was followed minutes later by McDougall. They found their friend in the foetal position on the floor with the radiator against his back. Knowing they should not move him, they fed him tea by teaspoon and covered him in coats while they waited for an ambulance. “He was conscious and very lucid,” McDougall said. “His head was bloody.”
“I asked him about the football results,” Rodger said. “He knew Scotland had beaten the Faroe Islands 4-0 and that England had scored a late winner and Germany had lost. “To whom?” Rodger asked. “South Macedonia” MacVicar said. “Wrong, Jock. North Macedonia.” He was taken to the accident and emergency ward of a local hospital and was moved to another ward on Saturday morning. That afternoon a doctor rang McDougall to say their old friend “…has had a trauma. He is unresponsive. He is at the end of his life.” Rodger and McDougall rushed to his bedside and sat with him for 45 minutes. “He lay there with his eyes open but unresponsive” McDougall said. “He passed away at 8.40pm. He’d had a very good life.”
I can’t recall where I first met Jock MacVicar but it may have been at one of those interminable European Tour Qualifying Schools in Spain at a time when seats in the media centre were as scarce as hen’s teeth given the great stories that event always generated.
Since the advent of Challenge Tour promotions and other changes, the event lost its make-or-break cachet and so the numbers in attendance have diminished with the passing of the years.
Until recently, Jock was always there, ever ready to waltz among the cork oaks for hour or two around mid-morning before gathering the tales from the Scottish brigade. Once the copy was filed, he was always keen to meet up later with whoever happened to be covering the event for a glass of vino and a bite to eat. He was always convivial company and always well accompanied by the likes of Nick Rodger, Martin Dempster or Steve Scott — three men who looked after him so well in his later years.
There was never a dull moment when Nick and The Doyen, as he was known, were out and about and I still smile at the memory of one Q-School visit to PGA Catalunya in Girona a few years ago.
Having discovered a comfortable bolthole in the old town for dinner and drinks — a Catalan brasserie called Le Bistrot in the warren of medieval streets below the Cathedral was a favourite haunt — we’d head there direct from the course.
Parking one evening, Jock informed Nick and I that he was desperate to find a chemist’s and acquire “throat lozenges” – a phrase he intoned in his inimitable, west of Scotland burr. Darkness had fallen on a cool November evening as we made a beeline for Le Bistrot when Jock spied green neon cross glowing in the murky middle distance and took off at a quick march.
We’d just realised it was a veterinarians and not a pharmacy but Jock had already burst through the doors of the premises which was festooned with squeaky toys for Fido, and huge sacks of animal feed.
“Lozenges!” he said loudly to the bewildered vet, pointing to his throat. “I’m a little hoarse.”
We dined out on that one at Le Bistrot for the rest of the week.
I’ll miss those days and I’ll miss Jock, who was a gentleman and an amiable fellow traveller. Godspeed old friend. Rest in peace.
Peter Higgs – AGW Treasurer
It may seem strange to compare Jock MacVicar to David Rocastle , the legendary Arsenal midfield player, but that ‘s what I’m going to do because of something I read last week.
It was the 20th anniversary of Rocky’s death just a week before we lost Jock and among the many tributes to the popular England international was one from team-mate Lee Dixon, in which he described how Rocastle had welcomed him into the Arsenal dressing after he arrived as a comparative unknown from Stoke City and made his life so much easier.
Jock did the same for me.. I moved to Fleet Street from the provinces (Burnley to be precise) in 1984 to take on the job of golf correspondent of the Mail on Sunday. Golfers, golf writers and the politics of the Media Tent were all new to me and it was understandably a daunting experience. I wouldn’t describe other national newspapermen as hostile towards me but there is no doubt that some were undoubtedly cool. Not Jock. He was the friendly face, the encouraging voice, the man who wanted to see me do well.
I remember on one occasion in those early days being sat with Jock at a dinner where he listened patiently to my career story and offered me nothing but encouragement and support. I’ve never forgotten it because it meant so much.
‘Over the years Jock has always been the same, always had a friendly word , always took an interest in what I was up to ( and the fate of my football team, Reading) , and always wishing me well. No kinder , more genuine character could you wish to meet.
My last dealings with Jock concerned the distribution of his Christmas hamper, which as an octaganarian he was fully entitled to receive under AGW guidelines. He felt guilty about this as he was still working full-time. We, nonetheless, continued to send him one, because there was never a more worthy cause. But that was Jock, always thinking of others.
RIP old friend, you will never be replaced and will be sadly missed.
I once turned up for an Open media day at Muirfield incorrectly dressed for golf, rather than the usual lounge suit, and I bumped into Jock in that strange overspill car park and he just chuckled and said ‘you might have to try a bit harder than that’.Which sent me scurrying back to my car for a quick change.
Sometimes it’s enough just to be in the same room with the people that you’ve grown up reading but Jock would always make a point of saying hello and have a chat when most of us try and keep things as brief as possible. In the early days I genuinely felt like I was chatting to golfing royalty. The ones who were able to spend so much time with such a brilliant man were very lucky indeed.
From my early days as a inexperienced reporter at major amateur golf events north of the border four decades ago, I instinctively felt I had a friend in Jock. He’d been there and done it all with a turn of phrase I could only envy. He was friendly, encouraging and mentoring on a take-it-or-leave-it basis – no side either way. He loved to imitate my Extel colleague Mike Britten’s cockney accent and, even though I originate from Birmingham, he always took me to be a Londoner too. I suppose we all sound the same down here!
Ironically, my favourite Jock memory happened in London, well away from any golf press tent. One Friday lunchtime, circa 1999-2001, I was ensconced with a group of mates in the Princess Louise public house near Holborn station, very much our local, when out of the blue in walked Jock on his own. Straight away, I went to greet him and invited him to join us. He was characteristically diffident at first, but once he realised everyone in our group played golf he was soon in his element. It turned out he’d come to London to discuss his post-retirement working arrangements with the Express and had over an hour to kill prior to the decisive meeting, so he stuck resolutely to his one pint of Sam Smith’s Old Original bitter before bidding farewell.
In the brief interim (no more than 45 minutes) he regaled my friends with many entertaining golf anecdotes and insights, in that tenor lilt that was so much his calling card, that they were still asking me about him years later. I told them they’d never see him again, but whenever I met Jock subsequently – at the Open, Dunhill, Wentworth or a Ryder Cup – he always wanted to reminisce about the Princess Louise.A lovely man, and a true Braveheart.
The press tent at golf tournaments was often a beehive of unsavoury incidents, being peopled by a few somewhat explosive characters, myself undoubtedly included. Yet Jock was never involved in any of that unpleasantness. He stood at one side and let the battles proceed around him, occasionally being drawn in reluctantly to act as referee.
He refused to take part in any of them. He was above them, a peacable man. He didn’t have to say so but you just knew he disapproved of all that silliness going on around him. Despite his unchallengeable excellence at his profession, he would surely have been just as successful had he pursued a career in the diplomatic corps.
The golf press tents, such as they are nowadays, will be a poorer place for his absence. I remember Jock so well and miss him already.
There wasn’t much that Jock didn’t know about golf and golfers and his unflagging enthusiasm was an inspiration. I honestly thought he would go on for ever and I suppose in a way he did, preparing himself for another Masters and looking forward to Robert MacIntyre’s debut at Augusta National.
I think the last time I played golf with Jock was at Gleneagles, on a glorious day. As I recall, there was little need for what Dai, infuriated because he never mastered the art, used to call “the sneaky, snivelling Scottish shots“ that bored low under the wind and ran for miles. Jock was the master of them and obviously Dai, on the receiving end so often, would chunter about the unfairness of trying to compete against a man “who was born playing bent double at Machrihanish”.
I was so glad to hear that Nick Rodger and Stewart McDougall were with Jock at the end, letting him know just how much he was loved as well as admired.
What a lovely gentleman, a person who was so easy to respect from the time you first met himand. Our paths crossed in press tents in many parts of the world – although I suspect Jock wasn’t exactly the keenest of flyers – and and also in one or two bars where he would put away a few glasses of scotch with his customary style.
Then there were the golf writers internationals when Colm Smith and I crossed clubs with Jock and his Scottish colleagues and those from England and Wales -and enjoyed every minute of the golf and what came later. Great times indeed. Farewell and RIP Jock, you will be missed.
The flood of warm tributes from around the golfing world says it all. Jock was a gentleman and a gentle man, kind, generous, honourable and, so preciously, utterly without ego.
This post-Ron Skelton, pre-Steve Scott golf correspondent of the Dundee Courier joined the band of ‘daily’ lads in the late 70s: Norman Mair (The Scotsman), Raymond Jacobs (The Glasgow Herald), Alister Nicol (The Daily Record), John Campbell (The Daily Telegraph), Iain MacNiven (The Evening News), Jackie Robertson (The Evening Times) and that ubiquitous freelance Peter Donald.
Sadly all gone. Only Gordon Simpson (The Press and Journal) and Alan Fraser of that motley crew remain to bore each other about the so-called good old days.Jock was the doyen long before he was ever called The Doyen. Christ, with his silver hair he looked pretty old even then to these eyes. Who knew he would still be writing for his beloved Scottish Daily Express 40 odd years later?
The Nether Abbey Hotel at North Berwick was the place. The Cullen Skink, a Jock favourite, followed by something meaty and then something sticky. The postprandial promenade was compulsory, albeit considered time wasted by the younger of us.And then to the serious business, Jock first to put his hand in his pocket, dear Raymond last. Not good old days. Great days.
Jock and I were born the same year with Jock being a few months older.
I first worked with him in December 1967 when we reported on an International Football game in Pescara, Italy. Scotland B team, as they were known then, played an Italian side. We had many cups of tea and biscuits to pass the time. In those days we had to phone our copy which could be quite daunting depending on which telephonist you were lucky to get. It was on this trip that Jock admitted he did not like flying. Whilst doing his National Service he had to parachute out of an aircraft. However, he overcame his fear and travelled the world covering golf tournaments. I believe he didn’t quite overcome new technology!
Like Jock, I chose golf rather than football. He was always ready to help anyone especially the young writers. It was a privilege to know Jock for over fifty years. He has gone but will never be forgotten.
Farewell Gentleman Jock.
Michael McDowell – Past AGW President & Chairman
Alister Nicol made the bet. He and Jock would play Dai Davies and McDonnell for £20 a side. One problem, Jock doesnt bet and must not know about the wager. Up steps Peter Doberiner to take Jock’s share. The match finished all square and innocent Jock was puzzled by the sense of relief on all sides. I don’t think wee Al told him the real reason. Happy memories of a delightful man. from Michael McDonnell.
Very sad news about an old friend, please pass on my condolences.
Jock MacVicar was always a friend and support in my golf writing career. An always delightful presence, who willingly gave help if you needed it. His great golfing knowledge was a big asset for those of us less well informed in the historical sense.
AGW MEMBER EMAILS OF CONDOLENCE
+ NB – Members who forwarded emails with tributes to Jock should be found above in the main tribute section. The following emails are messages of condolence received soon after news of Jock’s passing. In some cases where members sent both an email of condolence and then a tribute, the tribute only appears.
So sad. RIP Jock
Alejandro Rodriguez/David Duran –
Oh, no! It’s so so so sad!!! Great Jock, big man!! We will always remember him with his huge smile. David and I send to you, Martin, our condolences!! We drink wine in his Jock’s honour! ¡Un abrazo fuerte from Spain!
Bill Elliott – Past AGW Chairman
I am so sorry to hear that news. Jock was a lovely man, a man of words and dignity whose contented, happy demeanour never changed throughout the 43 years I knew him. He was a credit to the AGW and to all of Scotland and I pass on my condolences to the many Scottish colleagues in particular who I know will be particularly sad today. Well done Nick and Stewart for being with him at the end. Yours in sorrow, Bill
Very sad news about Jock. When I told Colin he was quite upset and immediately said he would have to go to his funeral. I had to remind him about lockdowns and that numbers are restricted at funerals. He has still not quite accepted these lockdowns. I’m sure he will want to send a tribute once you have sent out the link. Stay safe. Ethel F
Very sad to hear that Jock has passed on. A real gent and one of the best. RIP Jock.
Shocking and horrible news. Raising a glass of red as we speak in memory of Jock.
John Hopkins – Past AGW Chairman
Chairman, this is sad news indeed. He was a hero of mine for his longevity and devotion to his craft. He was a model to me in an age when fewer and fewer journalists adhere to the traditions he espoused and I tried to follow. A sad day
Graham Chase (ISM)
So sorry to hear this. Jock was a great man with such love and passion for what he did. He couldn’t have asked for a better friend than you too.
A legend of golf writing….astonishing enthusiasm and unbridled passion for his work. An immense loss to the AGW. RIP Jock.
David Cannon (Getty Images)
What awful news. DC
So sad to hear this but so glad that Nick and Stewart were with him at the end. Dai always accused Jock of being the master of what he called the sneaky, snivelling Scottish shot, hit low under the wind, a result of “being born playing bent double at Machrihanish”.
Karen Harding (Past Secretary , Australian Golf Media Association)
This is such sad news. Please pass on my personal condolences to Jock’s family and his many friends and colleagues in AGW. I will pass this on to new AGMA secretary Michael Green for him to alert members of AGMA if he is not already aware of it. So very sorry, Karen
Stuart Adams (Golf Tour Images)
That is so sad Martin. Thanks for letting us know.
EUROPEAN TOUR/GOLFING BODIES – TRIBUTES
Keith Pelley, Chief Executive of the European Tour
“As well as the spiritual home of golf, Scotland is also home to many of the legendary writers and commentators on our sport and today we mourn the passing of one of the greatest in Jock MacVicar.
“An authoritative voice on every aspect of our game, everyone at the European Tour sends our deepest condolences to Jock’s family and his many friends. He enriched the lives of everyone he met and there is no question that the entire golfing world is a sombre place today because of this sad news.”
Guy Kinnings – Deputy CEO, Ryder Cup Director, Chief Commercial Director
Jock was simply one of the kindest and friendliest people that I have been lucky enough to meet in the golfing world. From my earliest days on Tour, he was so welcoming and always cheery even when things were a little bleak (in weather terms or indeed in the media/recorder’s area). He had a great knowledge of – and love for – the game and was an outstanding writer.
He was loved by the players as he was insightful but fair. Even when he knew the answer that was coming, I loved the sidelong smile and twinkle in his eye as he probed on something. To be as popular as he was with his peers and everyone else in the game who came across him speaks volumes for Jock. I shall miss him.
Scott Crockett, Communications Director
“Today is a very sad day for our sport and for the wider media family. Jock was not only loved and respected in his native Scotland but across the world, and his loss is therefore deeply felt.
“Jock knew everything about golf and knew everybody in golf – he was not known as ‘The Doyen’ for nothing. But it was his gentlemanly and kind-hearted demeanour, his at-times wicked sense of humour and his ability to engage everyone as he found them, that most will remember fondly. You could be a Major Champion or a first round competitor in the Scottish Boys Championship; Jock treated them both the same.
“Personally, as a young golf reporter in Scotland in the 1980s, the generosity shown to me by Jock at that time – welcoming me into the journalistic fold and showing me the ropes of our business – was eternally appreciated. I will never forget that kindness. RIP old friend.”
Royal & Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews
We send our sincere condolences to Jock’s family and friends and all at the AGW. Jock was an outstanding golf writer and made a huge contribution to the sport over many years. He will be greatly missed by all of us at The R&A.
Mike Woodcock ( R & A)
It’s very sad news. He was an amazing guy and will be greatly missed by all of us at The R&A. The Media Centre at The Open won’t be the same without him. Please accept our sincere condolences.
Stuart Moffatt (R & A)
So sorry to hear this sad news this evening. Ed Hodge was in touch to let us know he had fallen earlier in the week. It’s a comfort to know Nick and Stewart were with him at the end. Jock was a true gentleman and great writer. His love for golf was clear to see. Was a pleasure to have known him and spent time in his company.
I know he was close to you, Nick and the others and my thoughts are with you all this evening. Will raise a glass to him.
Malcolm Booth (R & A)
Jock was always one of the faces you looked forward to at golf events. The media centres won’t be the same without him. RIP Jock.
The PGA is deeply saddened to hear of the passing of hugely popular golf reporter, Jock MacVicar. Jock was a friend and gentleman of the game of golf and will be sadly missed. Our thoughts are with Jock’s family, friends and colleagues at this difficult time.
Irish Golf Writers Association (Paul Kelly, Chairman)
It’s terribly sad news. The thoughts of all the members of the Irish Golf Writers Association along with myself are with Jock and the many members of the Association of Golf Writers that knew him well. He was a great supporter of the Irish events on the European Tour and will be sadly missed.
Australian Golf Media Association (Michael Green AGMA Secretary/Treasurer)
On behalf of all the members of the Australian Golf Media Associaton we offer our sincere condolences to the members of AGW on the news of Jock MacVicar’s passing.
St. Andrews Links Trust
Everyone at the Home of Golf is incredibly sad to hear the news that Jock MacVicar sadly passed away today. Regular visits from the doyen to St Andrews to cover all levels of golf were eagerly anticipated through the years. A true gent and great ambassador for our game.
All at Scottish Golf mourn the passing of legendary Scottish golf writer, Jock MacVicar. Our thoughts are with Jock’s family, friends and colleagues at this difficult time.
Visit Scotland Golf
Tonight golf in Scotland is mourning the loss of one of its greatest advocates. RIP Jock and thank you for everything you did to promote this great game in Scotland and beyond.
Crail Golfing Society
Very sad news learning the passing of Jock MacVicar. Jock was a long-time friend of everyone at Crail & we had the pleasure of welcoming him back two years ago for the Scottish Amateur Championship
Castle Stuart Golf
Sad to hear of the passing of a wonderful golf journalism legend, Jock MacVicar. May he rest in peace.
We are sad to hear the news of the passing of Jock MacVicar. A well known face at Carnoustie with a career spanning over 50 years. He will be missed by us all.
Scottish Golf Museum
Very sad to learn the passing of Jock MacVicar . To say Jock was a legend is an understatement. Will be very sadly missed by his colleagues and many friends. RIP Jock
Scotlands Coast Golf
In memory of Jock MacVicar, who sadly passed away at the weekend. The clip from the Scottish Boys Championship @DunbarGolfClub in 2015 beautifully highlights his enthusiasm, knowledge and passion for the game. A true gent and a lovely man.
EUROPEAN/PGA TOUR GOLFERS -TRIBUTES
It is with sadness that one of the best golf writers during my six decades in professional golf has passed on to greener fairways, Jock MacVicar. We in the world of golf will miss him and the wonderful manner with which he conducted his journalism.
Colin Montgomerie OBE
Very sad to hear Jock MacVicar has died. I first met Jock when playing in the 1979 Scottish Boys Championship at Dunbar he was always very supportive and knowledgeable. We spoke a few months ago speaking to Jock was like talking to an old friend. He will be very sadly missed
So so sad to hear of this news . Jock was a really nice man, popular with us all and a man of great integrity #RIP
Sam Torrance OBE
So sorry to hear of the passing of the Doyen of Scottish golf reporting, Jock Macvicar, I knew and respected him for over 40 years. A dear friend RIP Jock
Catriona Matthew OBE
Jock MacVicar you will sadly missed the ..a true gentleman who treated everyone equally,,it was a privilege to have called you a friend.
So sad to hear the news that Jock MacVicar the Doyan has passed one of life’s good guys I’m proud to have been his friend RIP
One of our family has passed.. A true gentleman #RIP
Paul Lawrie OBE
Very sad to wake up to this news, Jock was a lovely man and a legend in the golf world. RIP Doyen.
Sad news… Jock for so many years has been the heartbeat of golf writers on the @EuropeanTour No one supported us Scottish golfers more than Jock Macvicar. TY. We will miss you.
Another sad day…Jock was a lovely fella and highly respected member of the golf press. RIP Jock
David & Vicky Drysdale
This is very sad news about “Poor Old Jock” as DD & I called him, Such a lovely man & what a character, He will be sadly missed by all who knew him especially from the golfing world.
Jock was always one of the faces you looked forward to at golf events. The media centres won’t be the same without him. RIP Jock
Sad to hear of the departure of a man who was liked by all. A true gentleman who loved the game and a thoroughbred journalist. RIP Jock.
Really sorry to hear this. Jock was such a lovely guy from covering Scottish Boys to @EuropeanTour always enjoying chatting to him. Will be missed by many RIP The Doyen
Very sad to hear of the passing of Jock MacVicar. When I was a kid I felt I’d made it big when I was in one of his reports. Always positive, constructive and supportive. Massive supporter of all Scottish Golfers. Thoughts are with his family, friends and colleagues.
Ewen Murray – SKY
Saddened to hear of the passing of Jock MacVicar. A lifetime alongside his company and writings. Both were exceptional. His passion for golf, was unsurpassed and those who engaged with Jock on and off the course were truly fortunate. An outstanding gentleman and journalist
When Jock phoned, we’d speak for 10 minutes before we got onto an interview with how is it going and chitter chatter. I know Belle Robertson and they were close. It was sad to hear of his passing.
WEBSITE LINKS TO TRIBUTES
Alistair Tait Golf – https://www.alistairtaitgolf.com/post/thanks-for-the-memories-jock
Ken Brown …. @KenBrownGolf – Sad news… Jock for so many years has been the heartbeat of golf writers on the @EuropeanTour. No one supported us Scottish golfers more than Jock Macvicar. TY. We will miss you.
Dave @1davethesave Such sad news, the death of legendary Scottish golf writer Jock MacVicar will leave a great void in the lives of all who had the honour to call him ‘friend’. RIP ‘Doyen’ – we’ll never see your like again!
Stewart Weir @sweirz – I knew Jock from our paths crossing at football. Once, #Rangers launched a new fast food menu. ‘Where’s the line?’ “Maybe their Walls of Delhi curry & Prince of Orange Juice” I replied. “No, surely not’ said Jock. They didn’t. “You bandit – I read the menu about four times!
GaryEvans @garyevanspro – Another sad day…Jock was a lovely fella and highly respected member of the golf press. RIP Jock
Chris Kelly@chrisjkelly1 – One of the absolute best. A proper gentleman.
Fatiha “Using N-Tesla Methods “ @TOURMISS – Very sad to hear about Jock. He had been a dear friend ever since I began reporting @EuropeanTour There was no-one involved with @ScottishGolf & @EuropeanTour players, officials, caddies and fellow @AGWgolfwriters – that Jock did not know & in turn respected Jock … Bernie
Calum Crowe @CalumCrowe10 – Awful news. Even on Zoom calls just a couple of weeks ago, he was still as sharp as ever. A working journalist till the very end. A source of infinite wisdom, knowledge and humour. The press tent will be a poorer place without you, Jock. A true legend of the game #TheDoyen
Eilidh Barbour – My dad knew him quite well. Hopefully they will share some stories in the land above!! #RIP @AGWgolfwriters
Victoria Drysdale @vicky_drysdale – This is very sad news about “Poor Old Jock” as DD & I called him, Such a lovely man & what a character, He will be sadly missed by all who knew him especially from the golfing world #Sadnews #RIP
Dougie Donnelly @dougiedonnelly – Such sad news. Spent many happy times with Jock, discussing not just golf but football too. An absolute gentleman of the old school, who will be sadly missed by everyone in Scottish golf. RIP old friend.
Greg Allen @gregallenRTE – Very sad passing of a lovely man and a true gentleman colleague. RIP Jock..
Alistair Tait – What sad news , Jock Macvicar was a lovely man with such a spirit for the game and all the Scottish players got such huge support from him . Total integrity and kindness always . I shall miss him . RIP Jock
paul grant @grantypsp – Very sad news, very fond memories of a great man,
St Andrews Links @TheHomeofGolf – Everyone at the Home of Golf is incredibly sad to hear the news that Jock MacVicar sadly passed away today. Regular visits from the doyen to St Andrews to cover all levels of golf were eagerly anticipated through the years. A true gent and great ambassador for our game.
Hugh Stuart @HughStuart15 – Really really sorry to hear this news . Jock was always a perfect gentleman in his long and distinguished career. RIP
Iain Sherry @IainSherry5 – A well loved figure in golf a total gentleman
Adrian Millerick @millerick10 – RIP Jock. An absolute legend.
Scottish Golf @ScottishGolf – All at Scottish Golf mourn the passing of legendary Scottish golf writer, Jock MacVicar. Our thoughts are with Jock’s family, friends and colleagues at this difficult time.
scott borrowman – Really sad news a lovely man respected by all
Paul Third @PJ_PThird – A sad day for Scottish golf.
Tyrone Smith @Tyrone_M_Smith – So sad to read this, a man who knew his craft, but more importantly was a really lovely chap.
Danny Law @dannylaw – Very sad news about Jock MacVicar. The Doyen was a true gentleman and a great champion of Scottish golf. He will be sorely missed.
Phil Casey @pcaseysafc – Really awful news. Was only giving me good-natured grief about Sunderland a few weeks ago. RIP Jock.
Óscar Díaz @oldgarcia – Ha fallecido Jock MacVicar, histórico de las salas de prensa de golf y ejemplo de pasión, capacidad y bonhomía. Se le echará de menos.
stephen.mcgowan @mcgowan_stephen – An absolute gentleman.
Crail Golfing Society @CrailGolf – Very sad news learning the passing of Jock MacVicar @ScotExpress Jock was a long-time friend of everyone @CrailGolf & we had the pleasure of welcoming him back two years ago for @ScottishGolf amateur championship
James Corrigan @jcorrigangolf – A great man. The media centres will not be same. RIP Jock
Stewart Armstrong @FuzzyGolf – An absolute legend amongst golf writers
Stephen Gallacher @stevieggolf – So sad to hear the news that Jock MacVicar the Doyan has passed one of life’s good guys I’m proud to have been his friend RIP
Mark Townsend @MTownsendGolf – Very sad, you genuinely couldn’t meet a better and nicer bloke. Always the same, always said hello and always stopped for a chat. Had some incredible and very entertaining stories, one of the very best
Keith Jackson @KeithDJackson – Devastating news, press tents will never be the same without Jock’s presence. Sincere condolences to all his close friends north of the border. RIP to The Doyen
Stuart Mackenzie @Stu_Mackenzie – Really sad news. Jock was an absolute gentleman, a master of his craft and hugely generous with his time, wit and wisdom.
GOLFNEWS @golfnewsmag – A wonderful man MN
Robert Gordon @bobbyg2443 – Really sad news a lovely man respected by all
David Connor @DavidConnorGolf – Very sad news. Some fantastic memories with the Doyen. I’ll be raising a glass in his memory tonight.
Mike Sharples @SharpMikeS – Very sad news. Jock was a proper Gent
Lynn Wallace @lynniewallace – Very sad news.
Drum @scottGdrummond – RIP Jock….saddened to hear this, always good company
David Begg @dadbegg – Sad to read this. Jock was the last survivor of the guys that got me into the media business 40 years ago, and to whom I owe a great debt. Rightly known as The Doyen he was a positive influence on so many of our top golfers and writers. The world is a poorer place for his passing
Willie Vass – An absolute gentleman.
Bryan Wilson @bryanwilson57 – Very sad. Best Scottish golf writer.
Stephen Kasiewicz @SKasiewicz – Really sad news. Kind, helpful and funny. He always made me feel very welcome when covering golf. A great man and writer.
Iain Macfarlane @i_mac72 – Sad, sad news….was a privilege to have known and worked with such a talented, kind and humble man.
Paul Childs @paulmjchilds – Very sad news
Mike Woodcock @MikeWoodcock2 – Desperately sad news. Jock was a lovely man who always had a kind word for everyone and an astute observation to make about the golf. He had an amazing career and will be greatly missed by all of us who had the privilege to work with him. RIP Jock.
Steve Scott – Really sad news. Kind, helpful and funny. He always made me feel very welcome when covering golf. A great man and writer.
John Armour @JohnArmour6 – So sorry to hear this sad news, lovely man one of Kintyre’s finest.
Nick Nixon – Very sad news. Some fantastic memories with the Doyen. I’ll be raising a glass in his memory tonight.
Alan Campbell @AlanCamSport – An absolute gentleman and friend of many years. An irreplacable loss to golf in Scotland.
The R&A @RandA – We send our sincere condolences to Jock’s family and friends and all at the AGW. Jock was an outstanding golf writer and made a huge contribution to the sport over many years. He will be greatly missed by all of us at The R&A.
John Greechan – Really sad news. Kind, helpful and funny. He always made me feel very welcome when covering golf. A great man and writer.
VisitScotland Golf @VisitScotGolf – Tonight golf in Scotland is mourning the loss of one of its greatest advocates. RIP Jock and thank you for everything you did to promote this great game in Scotland and beyond.
Michael Baillie @BaillieMichael – Really sad news. Got to know Jock when I worked at the Scottish Express, always good to chat with him whenever he phoned in the office. A lovely man.
The PGA @ThePGA – The PGA is deeply saddened to hear of the passing of hugely popular golf reporter, Jock MacVicar. Jock was a friend and gentleman of the game of golf and will be sadly missed. Our thoughts are with Jock’s family, friends and colleagues at this difficult time.
lawrencedonegan – What sad news. Such a lovely man and a big supporter of Scottish Golf. What an outpouring over the death of Jock MacVicar. No wonder. Just a decent, lovely guy. To have such respect and love from the people you worked with is quite the tribute. RIP Jock.
Bounce @bouncespmgt – So sad to hear the news that Jock MacVicar sadly passed away today. A proper legend, the doyen was one of life’s proper true gentleman. A lot of sad hearts in the golfing world tonight. RIP Jock
Iain Burns – Sad day – RIP Dunaverty maestro
Castle Stuart Golf @CastleStuart – Sad to hear of the passing of a wonderful golf journalism legend, Jock MacVicar. May he rest in peace.
Colin Callander – Very sad to hear the great Jock MacVicar, president of @AGWgolfwriters has died aged 83. The Doyen was such an enduring presence, contributing to the Scottish Express until the very end. Golf reporting was his life and media tents around the world will miss him massively.
John Gordon – On behalf of the @GJ_AC executive board & membership sincere condolences to Jock’s family, friends & to all members of the @AGWgolfwriters. #RIPJock
Andy Skinner @andydskinner – So terribly sad. Such a wonderful and dedicated man, Jock’s company and kind nature made covering the golf events so enjoyable. RIP Doyen.
Dean Robertson – Jock was always one of the faces you looked forward to at golf events. The media centres won’t be the same without him. RIP Jock
Stephen Sharples – What a truly great man, we are going to sorely miss the Doyen at the Tour – seeing him at every virtual press conference, his daily Reply All to our whole department thanking us for transcripts and many more unique and brilliant quirks. An absolute gentleman to the very last. RIP
Clare Bodel – RIP Jock. An absolute legend.
Douglas McKerracher – Jock MacVicar was a real gentleman in the true sense of the word. I loved meeting him. He was so well cared for in his latter years by all his Scottish colleagues – particularly after he fell ill at Ryder Cup in Paris in 2018. He was much admired and indeed much loved.
Carnoustie Golf Links @carnoustiegolf – We are sad to hear the news of the passing of Jock MacVicar. A well known face at Carnoustie with a career spanning over 50 years. He will be missed by us all.
Tom Carlisle – Such sad news. The Doyen’s quick wit and passion for Scottish golf made every media centre – physical or virtual – a better place. He’ll be much missed.
Paul Mahoney @MrPaulMahoney – A great and lovely gentle man. There will never be another like the Doyen. Glasses of the hard stuff will be raised.
VisitScotland News – Saddened this morning to hear of the passing of Jock MacVicar. Jock was a proud Scot who loved the game of golf. He always reported in a balanced way and was a true gentleman. You will be missed, RIP @EventScotNews @VisitScotGolf @AGWgolfwriters @ScotExpress
David McCarthy @dmccarthyDR – Jock seemed to know everyone from Tiger to the marshalls and treated them with equal respect. He was liked by everyone on both sides of the ropes because his love of his sport shone so brightly. A brilliant golf writer. It was his life and he lived it to the full. RIP Doyen.
Carol Dempster -What sad news , Jock Macvicar was a lovely man with such a spirit for the game and all the Scottish players got such huge support from him . Total integrity and kindness always . I shall miss him . RIP Jock One of the very best who will be sorely missed.
Michael Vlismas @MichaelVlismas – So sad to hear of the passing of Jock. I’ll never forget the whisky he gave me in a pub in St Andrews the first time we met many years ago. Just a whiff blew the back of my head off. Thinking of all my Scottish golf writing colleagues who knew and loved Jock.
Katy Mathieson @katygolf24 – Such sad news. An absolute gent who will be sorely missed . RIP Jock
Marissa Villaverde-Jurisprudence Health law – Saddened this morning to hear of the passing of Jock MacVicar. Jock was a proud Scot who loved the game of golf. He always reported in a balanced way and was a true gentleman. You will be missed, RIP @EventScotNews @VisitScotGolf @AGWgolfwriters @ScotExpress
Andy Johns – Very sad to hear the great Jock MacVicar, president of @AGWgolfwriters has died aged 83. The Doyen was such an enduring presence, contributing to the Scottish Express until the very end. Golf reporting was his life and media tents around the world will miss him massively.
Andy Skinner @andydskinner -So terribly sad. Such a wonderful and dedicated man, Jock’s company and kind nature made covering the golf events so enjoyable. RIP Doyen.
Nick Rodger @NickRodger1 – A lovely man who meant so much to us all. Mercifully, we got to be with him at the end. He wasn’t alone. And he never was thanks to a game that fulfilled a life lived very much his way. Oor last drink together was a bloomin’ takeaway coffee. We’ll make up for that auld freen’.
roger mcstravick – Very sad to hear about Jock. He had been a dear friend ever since I began reporting @EuropeanTour
Scottish Golf Museum and Gary J Silcock – Very sad to learn the passing of Jock MacVicar @AGWgolfwriters To say Jock was a legend @ScottishGolf @EuropeanTour is an understatement. Will be very sadly missed by his colleagues and many friends. RIP Jock
Tony Johnstone @TonyJohnstone56 – Sad to hear of the departure of a man who was liked by all. A true gentleman who loved the game and a thoroughbred journalist. RIP Jock.
Spencer Henderson @SpencerHGolf – An absolute gentleman and legend. Will be sorely missed.
veritas aequitas – Saddened this morning to hear of the passing of Jock MacVicar. Jock was a proud Scot who loved the game of golf. He always reported in a balanced way and was a true gentleman. You will be missed, RIP @EventScotNews @VisitScotGolf @AGWgolfwriters @ScotExpress
Iain Carter @iaincartergolf – Very sad to hear the great Jock MacVicar, president of @AGWgolfwriters has died aged 83. The Doyen was such an enduring presence, contributing to the Scottish Express until the very end. Golf reporting was his life and media tents around the world will miss him massively.
David Hamilton @DJHamilton13 – A genuine one-off who’ll be sorely missed by so many of the big names of golf. Generous of spirit, people naturally gravitated towards Jock because of his easy, humble ways and friendly demeanour. Ever the gentleman and consummate professional. An honour to work with you, Jock.
Elaine @efb615 Elaine Farquharson-Black – Double Curtis Cup Captain – Such sad news. My father and Jock’s friendship spanned 54 years, built on a shared love of writing about golf. I remember the days of them phoning their copy through. Jock always much calmer in the press tent than Dad! Always a gentleman.
rick broadbent – Very sad to hear the great Jock MacVicar, president of @AGWgolfwriters has died aged 83. The Doyen was such an enduring presence, contributing to the Scottish Express until the very end. Golf reporting was his life and media tents around the world will miss him massively.
michael bonallack @michaelbonalla3 – Jock was a lovely man. Always fair and never writing anything unkind about anyone. RIP
Andrew Coltart @AndrewColtart – Very sad to hear of the passing of Jock MacVicar. When I was a kid I felt I’d made it big when I was in one of his reports. Always positive, constructive and supportive. Massive supporter of all Scottish Golfers. Thoughts are with his family, friends and colleagues.
Lorne Rubenstein @lornerubenstein – Sad to learn about Jock’s passing. He was always welcoming and generous with his time to this Canadian when we met at the majors and other international events. Kind and friendly…a man of deep warmth and knowledge.
Ed Hodge – Jock MacVicar was a real gentleman in the true sense of the word. I loved meeting him. He was so well cared for in his latter years by all his Scottish colleagues – particularly after he fell ill at Ryder Cup in Paris in 2018. He was much admired and indeed much loved.
Lindsay Herron @herron_media – Great colleague during my time with @ScotExpress and a complete workaholic – The Hoover we used to call him. Remember he told me to look out for a bloke called Ernie Els.
Ewan Murray @mrewanmurray – The scale of tributes will say it all about Jock MacVicar. A lovely man, who lived for his sport and his job. He will be laughing in the great clubhouse in the sky about “tweeterers” singing his praises. I was “The Mad Murray” … Jock was a force of nature. We will all miss him.
Gordon Munro @gord1991 – Sad news. Jock was a true gent who had a wonderful career
european tour rat @wayneefc1 – RIP Jock safe travels m8
AGW Tweet in reply to Robert MacIntyre after his T12th in maiden Masters
Minutes after the assurance of an automatic 2022 @TheMasters invitation & @robert1lefty was asked (see below) about the Black Ribbon he wore #AugustaNational Congratulations Robert on a fantastic week & your moving tribute to our dear departed @AGWgolfwriters President, colleague & friend