Dervock’s day to shine

CROWDED STREETS. Just some of the many hundreds and hundreds of people who lined the streets in Dervock on Sunday.INBM23-12 076SC.
CROWDED STREETS. Just some of the many hundreds and hundreds of people who lined the streets in Dervock on Sunday.INBM23-12 076SC.

Few villages in Northern Ireland can boast an Olympic heritage such as that prized by Dervock.

On the entrance into the village is a road sign bearing the image of its most famous son - Kennedy Kane McArthur.

McArthur was a Dervock-born marathon runner who took gold in the 1912 Olympic games in Sweden, albeit in the colours of South Africa where he emigrated to prior to the event.

But his loyalties have never been in doubt and the pride felt by the villagers for the heroics of the chain-smoking, chip-eating postman was evident.

While Dervock is bedecked with red, white and blue flags every summer, yesterday fluttering alongside the Union flag were the colours of Sweden and South Africa.

Banners depicting McArthur were painted by local young people and hung throughout the village adding yet more colour.

North Antrim UUP MLA Robin Swann said of Dervock:

“This small community has for many years demonstrated a commitment to maintaining the memory of Kennedy Kane McArthur’s achievement and the short visit by the torch team is a worthy way of acknowledging that work.

“The famous flame coming to Dervock itself as well as other parts of north Antrim will provided a tremendous tourist and economic boost for the constituency.”