THE Mary Peters Trust, is establishing a “Friends of” Association. The Trust gives grants to young athletes to help them achieve their goals.
Recent athletes from Cookstown to receive awards are, Matthew Rollins and Ian Sloan for Hockey.
Mary has many friends from all walks of life but she would like more so she is calling on anyone who received an Award or Grant from the Mary Peters Trust (also formally known as the Ulster Sports and Recreation Trust), from 1975 onwards, to get in touch - and anyone else who just wants to be a Friend Of.
It was the idea of Paul Lawther who was one of the first ever awardees, who recently approached Mary and said: “I really appreciated the award at the time, it meant a lot to me, what can I do now?”
Mary said: “When Paul Lawther spoke to me about what the award meant to him all those years ago and how it inspired him to keep competing and improve, I just wondered who else had a story to tell.
“I would love to hear from our ‘Friends Of Association’ past awardee or not, anyone who wants to be kept in touch with the young athletes of today. We will all be closely following as they compete at the Olympics this year please sign up and become a ‘Friend Of’ the Mary Peters Trust.”
Paul said the award gave him a head start early in his career.
“My sport was Athletics and in my early days the award I was given helped me in my sporting career, I was a GB International Athlete and sub four minute miler, AAA Junior Champion and record holder at 1500m and European Junior holder at 2000m. At one point I held all Northern Ireland records from 800m through to 3000m steeplechase. I would never have achieved this without the support I received from the Mary Peters Trust.
“As one of the first award winners, it made a considerable difference at the time and has helped me in many ways since then. I now have a small group of other ‘Friends Of’ including Ian Corry, the first ever awardee for swimming, Jenny Redpath, another early recipient and whose son Steven has been funded by the Trust, Andy McMorran who is well known in footballing coaching circles and Terry Crothers who is a long standing Trustee and works with Commonwealth Games and the Irish Ladies Golfing Union.”
To become a ‘Friend Of’ get in touch write to, Mary Peters Trust, House of Sport, Upper Malone Road, Belfast, BT9 5LA, email firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone 90383830.