Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner.

Peter Alliss: My Bond with Sir Sean Connery and his love of Gleneagles

Sir Sean Connery at Gleneagles.
Sir Sean Connery at Gleneagles.

The BBC’s ‘voice of golf’ Peter Alliss has told how his friendship with the late Sir Sean Connery blossomed over the fairways of Gleneagles.

The legendary commentator gave Sir Sean some tips to look the part before a golf scene in Goldfinger in 1964 and little did the two of them know that it was just the start of the James Bond star’s life-long love affair with the game.

Peter Alliss.

Alliss also hosted 140 episodes of the popular BBC series Pro-Celebrity Golf between 1974 and 1988 and Sir Sean was among the celebrities who took part and he partnered some of the top players in the game.

Gleneagles

Alliss said Sir Sean was a “dear friend” and a “good companion” who “thought going to Gleneagles was fantastic”.

Sir Sean pictured with Seve Ballesteros.

“As a young man he used to dream of going to Gleneagles and there he was,” said Alliss.

“When we played at Gleneagles he used to stay on because he loved the place.

“He enjoyed playing well-known courses and many of the people who played golf became his great friends.

“I got to know him on the fairways of Gleneagles and I remember he had just started the Scottish International Education Trust.

“I asked him to tell me about the charity and he suddenly stopped and said: ‘Peter, I’m no good without a script, give me a script and I’ll do it for you’.

“For a long period of time, words did not flow from him easily.

“He was quite self-conscious but he liked his whisky and he liked men’s conversations and he enjoyed the ambience of golf.

“He was very proud to be a member of the R&A and when he was playing golf he was happy.”

Born in Leith to a working class family, Sir Sean was both a body-builder and model before turning his hand to acting.

Silly things

Alliss said he first met him in 1963 when he came down to Parkstone Golf Club near Bournemouth where Alliss was the club pro.

Sir Sean on the golf course in 1970.

“He was just starting out and I gave him a few tips which were silly things really – how to look like you know how to putt; how to pick up a bag of clubs; how to carry your clubs; how to tee a ball up; and how to put a flag back in the hole,” said Alliss.

“He was very inexperienced in these things and the tips I gave him didn’t hurt him when he played golf in Goldfinger.

“We got on very well and we remained friends for almost 60 years.”

In the film, Bond and Goldfinger face off at Stoke Poges Golf Club in Stoke Poges, a village in Buckinghamshire.

After catching Goldfinger cheating, Bond switches balls on his opponent during the match.

Sir Sean plays golf in Goldfinger.

Realising that Bond is attempting to interfere in his affairs, Goldfinger motions to Oddjob, his deadly Korean manservant and caddie, to sever the head of a nearby statue with his steel-rimmed bowler.

Alliss said Sir Sean loved golf but was never as good at the game as he would have liked.

“Strangely enough he had so much rhythm when he walked but he didn’t have a great deal of rhythm when he played golf,” he said.

“When I hosted the pro-celebrity golf events in the 1970s and 1980s I got to know him very well.

“I’ve been very interested to read the reports of his life since he died but I knew a very different Sean Connery from the one which has been portrayed.

Sir Sean at Gleneagles.

“He was handsome, 14 stone of muscle, a good looking man and very sophisticated, but he wasn’t really like that in the early days.

“He grew into it through his own efforts.

“He was conscious of his roots but he wanted to learn.

“He was a very ordinary person who was projected into this world of sophistication and romance and he played it wonderfully.

“He did his job remarkably well and he will be there forever on film.

“He was a very interesting character and I shall miss him.”


Golden Bear tribute to “truly special” friend

Glenn Campbell, Jack Nicklaus, Ben Crenshaw and Sean Connery at the Old Course in 1979.

Eighteen-time major champion Jack Nicklaus played with Sir Sean in Courier Country several times and described the Bond legend as “just the best”.

“The world has lost a wonderful actor, a wonderful man, and someone truly special in our family’s world,” said Nicklaus.

“I have known Sean Connery for close to 50 of his 90 years.

“He loved the game of golf – Sean was a pretty darn good golfer – and we played together several times.

Sean Connery, Jack Nicklaus, Ben Crenshaw and Glen Campbell.

“Sean was an original member of Muirfield Village Golf Club, when we opened in 1974, and I believe he was an original member of the Memorial Tournament’s Captains’ Club.

“In May of 1993, Sean and legendary driver Jackie Stewart helped me open our design of the PGA Centenary Course at Gleneagles in Scotland.

Sir Sean goes clay-pigeon shooting at Gleneagles.

“We even did a TV match, playing with hickory-shafted clubs on the Old Course at St Andrews with Glen Campbell and Ben Crenshaw.

“The game of golf allowed our lives to intersect often, and through that, we became good friends.”


Life and times of a movie legend

Sir Sean Connery as James Bond.

Born Thomas Sean Connery in Edinburgh’s Fountainbridge area on August 25 1930, the actor left school at an early age and took his first job as a milkman.

At 16 he enlisted in the Royal Navy but was discharged three years later on medical grounds after suffering a stomach ulcer.

His first major step into acting came in 1957 when he secured a role in the British gangster film No Road Back.

Dr No

However, it was his casting as Ian Fleming’s fictional British secret agent James Bond in 1962’s Dr No that catapulted him to stardom.

Sir Sean was initially reluctant to commit to a film series but filled the role until 1967’s You Only Live Twice, when he quit after becoming tired by the repetitive plots.

Sir Sean Connery, Clint Eastwood and the Fife golf movie that never was

He was enticed back after his successor George Lazenby failed to impress fans and critics.

In the 1980s, his career was revived with The Untouchables, where his performance as an Irish policeman won him an Academy Award for best supporting actor.

Sir Sean’s five-decade career saw him win an Oscar, two Baftas and three Golden Globes.

Sir Roger Moore and Sir Sean Connery.

His other notable films include Indiana Jones And The Last Crusade, Highlander and The Hunt For Red October.

He was on a number of occasions voted by fans as the best actor to have played 007 in the long-running franchise, beating Craig and Sir Roger Moore.

He was knighted in the 2000 New Year Honours for services to film drama.

In August, he celebrated his 90th birthday.

Already a subscriber? Sign in

[[title]]

[[text]]

More from the Press and Journal Past Times team

More from the Press and Journal