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Sino-Scottish collaboration to help safeguard priceless photography collections

May 17, 2013

A priceless archive of golf photography held by the University of St Andrews is to benefit from the support of Mission Hills Golf Group in China, the world's largest golf facility.

Missions Hills is strengthening its ties with Scotland by supporting the 600th Anniversary celebrations of St Andrews, founded in 1413.

Mission Hills Group has already committed a six-figure sum to fund the development of St Andrews' Special Collections, which include extensive golf photography archives covering the development of golf from the 19th century onwards. They include the Lawrence Levy collection of more than 250,000 images and the collections of Scottish photographer George Cowie.

Scotland's first university is currently fundraising to make these and other treasures in its Special Collections more accessible with the creation of museum-quality display space, secure storage facilities, and dedicated teaching rooms in St Andrews.

Meanwhile in China plans are being developed for a Golf Museum to commemorate the legacy of David Chu, considered by many "the father of golf in China" and the founder of Mission Hills Golf Club. The University of St Andrews and Mission Hills Group will collaborate on displays for the new museum.

St Andrews and Mission Hills Group will also work to strengthen Scottish-Sino links during the University's 600th Anniversary Golf Tournament being held this summer, and will promote academic ties through scholarships for Chinese and Scottish exchange students. Mission Hills is the first golf club around the world to partner with the University of St Andrews during its 600th Anniversary.

St Andrews Principal and Vice-Chancellor Professor Louise Richardson said:

"Scotland and China - notwithstanding the extraordinary difference in scale - share a centuries-old passion for golf and an enduring commitment to the value of education. We are delighted to have the opportunity to work with Mission Hills Group to preserve the heritage of the game here in St Andrews and in China.

"We hope that our joint enterprise will not only strengthen cultural connections, but allow scholars, golfers, and the public in both our countries to explore the history and heritage of golf."  

Mission Hills Golf Club will also play a key part in the University's 600th Anniversary Golf Tournament - the St Andrews 600. The friendly competition will incorporate rounds of golf on The Duke's, Kingsbarns Golf Links and the Old Course from June 21 - 23, 2013. Competitors will include St Andrews alumni, donors, friends and corporate supporters and the event is designed to raise funds for university teaching and research in St Andrews.

Tenniel Chu, Vice-Chairman of Mission Hills Group which has played host to more than 100 international tournaments, will bring his golf management expertise to Scotland as Honorary Vice-Chairman of the 600th Anniversary Golf Tournament.

He said:  "It's a great honour for Mission Hills to be the only golf club in China to be partnering with the University of St Andrews. We are dedicated to promoting golf development around the world and with golf's return to the Olympics and China's potential to be the world's largest golfing market, our association with St Andrews University and their extensive golf archive within their Special Collections is a very special partnership for us with great potential."

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