England (East) Region
15 Jun 18
Andrew George is all set to celebrate 25 proud years as head PGA Professional at his home city club of Ely.
George was an aspiring tour golfer playing in Australia when in July 1993 he received correspondence from back home that would change the path of his life.
Ely City Golf Club, where he had taken up the sport aged 15 (and become a four-handicapper within a year) was looking to fill the shoes of Fred Rowden, who had retired as the professional a few months earlier.
George, 29 at the time, was a former assistant professional at the Cambridgeshire club and told that he would at least be in the final three if agreeing to attend an interview.
It was a big decision for him as he and his future wife Paula – a New Zealander – were very happy with their life down under.
But George said: “We came over and decided that if I got the job that we’d give it five years and see then if we wanted to go back to Australia. But 25 years later here we are still.
“And I don’t think there has been a single day when I’ve driven into work not looking forward to it. I’ve always loved coming here – it has been great. It’s a good club, very friendly and they’ve looked after me.
“In this job you’re continually evolving. You have to keep up – in your training, marketing, business acumen – otherwise you just get left behind.”
As well as being a fine professional on his home turf, George has served as a fine ambassador far and wide for the Cambridgeshire club.
He has qualified to play in two Opens, lined up in four PGA Championships at Wentworth and represented Great Britain and Ireland in the PGA Cup.
He said: “As I was a junior member here it made me very proud to be an ambassador of the club. When it’s announced on tee, ‘Andrew George, from Ely City,’ I still love that. This is where my home is.”
George can point to a long list of achievements in what has been very good career. Indeed, playing remains of significant importance for him.
Now 54 he is still extremely competitive. Only earlier this month he won the East region’s qualifier for the English PGA Championship, which will be played at Saunton in Devon on June 27-29.
George’s busy summer will also see him juggle his commitments at Ely City with attempts to qualify for the Senior Open for a fourth successive year.
This season there is added incentive as the tournament will be staged at the home of golf, St Andrews.
He said: “Playing competitive golf is still a massive part of my life. My desire to play and practice has never left me. The other thing is, I’m hitting it further now than I’ve ever done!”
Proof indeed that there’s plenty more to come from George in the years ahead.