It's a well known story that Lee took up golfing at thirteen years of age, when during the school holidays he became bored with his Dad's favourite pastime....fishing! So with a half set of clubs, he and his Dad took up golf. By 1988, Lee was Under 15 Golf Foundation Champion, the first of many achievements in his amateur career.
When Lee left school he attended a course on the leisure industry but decided it wasn't for him. His Dad said if he got at least 5 GCE O'levels (he actually got ten) he could play as an Amateur for two years. When he was seventeen he decided to apply to a few colleges in the US and was offered a scholarship in Augusta, but decided to turn it down as he felt that his golf would improve quicker by playing with lots of good players.
Lee remembers that at fifteen years old he played off three and by the time he was sixteen was down to two. However, by the time he played for the English Boys Team, he was down to scratch.
In 2009 the Lee Westwood Golf Academy was created.
New for 2013 coming soon ...
Lee later gave thought to given his stature within the game, he had the opportunity to change junior golf, going one step further to allow promising junior golfers to complete their education whilst improving their golf. He realises that you never forget a great teacher. That’s true whether it’s in the classroom or on the sports field. Okay, sometimes you need the benefit of hindsight to fully appreciate the value of such experiences, but if you are lucky enough to really connect with a teacher and what they have to say, it has the power to map out a future path to success and he is sure that if he'd had a similar opportunity to the one his golf school provides he would have taken it.
Essentially, that is the mission at the Lee Westwood Golf School, which currently has two centres located in the north and south of England – at Macdonald Portal Hotel Golf & Spa in Portal and Stoke by Nayland in Essex – providing on-site facilities and coaching in golf and education. For one half of each day an experienced team of full-time golf coaches provide the necessary golf skills and guidance to help youngsters achieve their full potential and perhaps go on to a career in golf. The other half of the day is dedicated to education, providing a back-up plan in the form of a BTEC national diploma in sport to create a springboard to a more fulfilling adult professional life.
“The school is an extension of me giving something back to a game which has given me a lot. Our school hopes to give all those the chance to develop their golf skills along with life skills and, very importantly, their education.” Lee Westwood September, 2010
Did you sign up for the Golfing Academy?A number of Lee's fans, who did so, got in touch with us...
Oliver T said, "Hi Lee, I am registered on your Academy days in Harrogate in the Summer. I cannot wait to learn new things and improve my game. I am 11 years old and been playing since I was 9. I am a full junior member at Willow Valley Golf club and in my first season at 9 years old got the most improved award! My handicap is still 20 but am working hard to reduce this in the club competitions when I play against older junior members. Looking forward to meeting you in the summer. Good Luck in your competitions"
Euan English age 9.Just want to let you know I am really looking forward to going to your Golf Academy in Harrogate in July! We are travelling from Scotland. Hope to follow you round Loch Lomond and The Open in the summer! YOUR NUMBER ONE FAN.
Some of Lee's younger fans have told us of their achievements...
REGINA HENDERSON wrote.... Hi! I'm on the Perry Meridian High School girl's golf team in Indidanapolis, Indiana, U.S. This year we got new coaches and had the best season yet! Our record ended up 10-2, smashing 5-6 record from last year. We ended up 5th out of 13 teams in the County tournament and 2nd in the Conference Indiana tournament. Unfortunately we didn't score very well at Sectionals, but we couldn't be happier with the success that we had this year!
My name is JAMIE McDONALD. I am 14 years old and play off a handicap of 6.5. My junior organiser is Nick Bone.I am a member of Kendal Golf Club. It is a nice course and can pose some dificult shots to be hit with the weather being so unpredictable .
Our junior team have done well this year and we were unbeaten in the league. I have had a good year this year winning the County u14 Championship and qualifing for the Andalucian Junior Open . Also I have won quite a few of the competitions throughout the year, only losing one of my 9 games for my club !!
BOB BROWN of Llandrindod Wells Golf Club says...Last year our team won the Brecon & Radnor matchplay league and came tie 3rd in the all Wales Final. The winners of that went to Portugal. Also last year we played in the Quad league, with four teams of 8 with 6 scores to count, and we came joint first, playing at each clubs home course. We have the lowest overall handicaps in both the leagues, and 4 of our players have been in Welsh Squads. We are coached by Phil Davies, the club professional.
LEE'S AMATEUR DAYS... (World Amateur Golf Ranking is on line - click here)
CLIVE GREAVES of Littlestone, Kent says, " I met Lee in 1992 when he was a leading amateur and I was Secretary at Royal Cinque Ports GC, Deal , Kent. Lee won our tournament that year and on the following day won at Royal St. Georges. I was very impressed by the way he handled himself. He spoke well at the prize ceremonies and unlike some of his fellow competitors obeyed, without any fuss, the requirements of both clubs by putting on jacket and tie when in the club house. He struck me as an example to other young golfers. I have followed his career since that time".