BY MARTIN WALSH
SINCE its establishment in 2017, the Great Wild Atlantic Marathon Walk, a fundraiser in aid of the Courtmacsherry RNLI Lifeboat, has raised over €31,000.
Unlike other fundraising events, this particular initiative also has a very positive effect for the participants by improving their own physical and mental well-being.
The walk and indeed the Courtmacsherry RNLI has the support of Taoiseach, Micheál Martin, who completed the entire 26.2 mile walk recently during a break in Courtmacsherry and wearing an ‘electric yellow’ EBS sponsored t-shirt.
The walk passes by Mary O’Neill’s public house in Butlerstown village. However, it wasn’t open during the Taoiseach’s walk, where he was accompanied by Ray Doherty and Ben Nunan.
He told The Southern Star: ‘We managed to get some water from the tap in Mary O’Neill’s. She wasn’t there but we went in the back and replenished our water supplies.’
He added: ‘The marathon walk reveals the incredible landscape and scenery of the Seven Heads peninsula. It was a beautiful day and there is extraordinary scenery to behold. It’s been a good summer weather wise and the RNLI have been fantastic. Courtmacsherry RNLI has been particularly active and they do so much to promote safety in the water. It’s important that we continue to support the RNLI and the lifeboats. The walk also underlines the importance of exercise and good health.’
In early 2017, former Irish international and collegiate athlete and Barry’s Point native Richard O’Flynn came up with the idea of forging links between the Courtmacsherry RNLI Lifeboat and Barryroe GAA.
His vision was that it would raise awareness of the Respect the Water campaign, in the drive to prevent drownings at sea and inland waters.
He was ideally placed to integrate both groups due to his involvement with Barryroe underage GAA club while his family are steeped in maritime activities in the Courtmacsherry area.
Last year and currently, Covid-19 has forced the organisers to change the format and the walk is now over all of August and the early weeks of September. It’s a case of anytime, anywhere and any distance, people can contribute on line at idonate.ie/CourtmacRNLIsupport2021.