Pat Ruddy

Full Name
Patrick John Ruddy
Year of Birth
Place Born
Ballina, County Mayo, Ireland

“When a person comes to Ireland, they become a member of the family. Friendships are formed that last for decades. We notice a visitor and we embrace them. They are not just fodder to a business, they are very welcome. I play golf every day. I love to go down to the 12th hole at the European Club. It is beside the Irish Sea and is surrounded by high hills. It is lovely and quiet in the evening. I am like a baby with a bucket and spade in the sand. I could stay there forever.” Pat Ruddy

Pat Ruddy was born in the small town of Ballina in County Mayo, but raised in the even smaller town of Ballymote, in County Sligo, where his father Martin (who was known as ‘Sid’) ran the local post office.

The third of five children born to Martin and Nota Ruddy, he discovered golf literature at a very young age through his father, who took the Sunday Times religiously every week, primarily to read the golf articles of Henry Longhurst.

In a 2006 interview with The Irish Times Pat said: “Some people read the bible but we read Longhurst. At the time there wasn’t television so reading about this man going to the most marvellously exotic-sounding places around the world was an inspiration.”

Those articles from the doyen of British golf writers, and a library book entitled Henry Cotton’s Golfing Album, were big factors in Pat becoming a golf journalist: “I had a huge fascination for the golf writer. They were the gods bringing the world to me. So I set out to be one, saving up to buy a typewriter.”

Pat started out as a freelance writer, working for golf magazines around the world, including South African Golf, where the Scots-born editor would pay him 50 Rand for writing 100 pages. As he says: “if you went to the bank today, they’d keep it all as charges but I didn’t care as I was famous in South Africa, you see, in the early ‘60s.”

He became a staff member at the Evening Herald in 1968 but left after five years to establish the Golfer’s Companion magazine. He was one of the first correspondents from this side of the Atlantic to attend the Masters Tournament, paying his own way for the privilege.

“One of my early objectives was ...

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Featured courses designed, remodelled and added to by Pat Ruddy

Ballinlough Castle

5th Westmeath - Best in Area

Ballinlough Castle Golf Club was founded in 1998 and was routed across verdant parkland by architect Pat Ruddy who stated: "Ballinlough has massive potential, to become one of the finest courses in the country in time to come."

Ballyliffin (Glashedy)

2nd Donegal - Best in Area 10th Ireland Ranking 54th Britain & Ireland Ranking

Ballyliffin Golf Club is often described as “the Ballybunion of the North” or “the Dornoch of Ireland” and the reason is simple; all the aforementioned are set amidst towering natural sand dunes.


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Ballyliffin (Old)

3rd Donegal - Best in Area 17th Ireland Ranking 100th Britain & Ireland Ranking

The Old course at Ballyliffin Golf Club is a classic links, with fairways that pitch and roll through wild dunes. This is links golf at its most traditional, where the perfect drive will often find an awkward lie.


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4th Kilkenny - Best in Area

Castlecomer Golf Club is fortunate to have acquired such a site as the old lawns of the Wandesforde Estate said Pat Ruddy the course designer.


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Connemara Isles

9th Galway - Best in Area

This, quite simply, is Irish golf at its very best. Connemara Isles Golf Club encapsulates all that is good about old fashioned golf played in stunning surroundings...


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4th Donegal - Best in Area 18th Ireland Ranking

The Murvagh peninsula jutting out into Donegal Bay is the home of Donegal Golf Club. It’s an enchanting and isolated setting for a big links course.


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Druids Glen

2nd Wicklow - Best in Area 27th Ireland Ranking

Druids Glen is the kaleidoscope of golf courses, for there is more colour here than at any other course in Ireland.


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Druids Heath

9th Wicklow - Best in Area 76th Ireland Ranking

The Druids Heath golf course at Druids Glen is a mix of heathland and parkland with some links-like elements thrown in for good measure.


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4th Wexford - Best in Area

The centurion Enniscorthy Golf Club has grown and developed over more than a hundred years into one of County Wexford’s premier parkland courses and much of the architectural credit for today’s layout belongs to Eddie Hackett and Pat Ruddy.

Pat Ruddy Leaderboard

Rank Name Courses Played
1 Andrew Forde Courses Played 12
2 Helmut Baeck Courses Played 11
3 Mark Barry Courses Played 10
= Shane Derby Courses Played 10
= Brian Foran Courses Played 10
= erik k Courses Played 10
= Ryan Courses Played 10
8 Fergal O'Leary Courses Played 9
= Ryan Gribben Courses Played 9
= Richard Quinn Courses Played 9