Herd was the club professional at Huddersfield Golf Club from 1892 to 1911. In 1902, he won The Open Championship at Hoylake. He had a three shot lead after 54 holes, but nearly let the title slip out of his hands by scoring an 81 in the final round. Harry Vardon and James Braid both had medium length putts at the final hole to force a play-off, but they missed and Herd took the Championship. He was the first Open Champion to use the Haskell rubber cored ball. In 1920 he became the oldest runner-up in The Open before Tom Watson in 2009. Herd's appearances in The Open Championship spanned fifty years, his last appearance being at St Andrews in 1939, when he was 71. He died in London.