A new book charting the 100 year history of the Parish Walk will be launched at Waterstones in Douglas on December 7. The walk – which is now sponsored by Manx Telecom – marked its centenary this year. The 216-page, full colour, tome – titled ‘The Ultimate Challenge: The Centenary of the Isle of Man Parish Walk’ and written by Manx author and walking enthusiast Dermot O’Toole – will be launched at the book store in Strand Street from 10am to 1pm. The author will be there to sign copies purchased on the day and the Manx Telecom Parish Walk winner’s trophy will be on display.
Dermot wrote a history of the event published in 2005 and has spent thousands of hours researching and writing this latest book to produce the definitive account of the Island’s biggest mass participation sports event. All the legendary tales and anecdotes which the race has produced since it began in 1913 are within the pages, alongside results and maps to complement the text. Mr O’Toole commented:
“It has certainly been a labour of love from start to finish. It took 12 months and several thousand hours of research to put together, and this version is an improvement on a Walk In Time which was published in 2005. Nevertheless, some of that content from that book has been included in The Ultimate Challenge in order to maintain a definitive history of the event over the past 100 years. Finally, with nearly 22,000 starters and 2,100 finishers since the event’s inception in 1913, it has been impossible to include every name and I apologise to those who missed out.”
The book is published by Manx-based Lily Publications Limited who – in association with the Parish Walk Committee and Manx Telecom – offered copies at a special discounted rate to all competitors from the 2013 event. ‘The Ultimate Challenge: The Centenary of the Isle of Man Parish Walk’ is available from all good bookshops and from www.lilypublications.co.uk priced £18.95.
David Smith, Manx Telecom Marketing Director, said:
“Dermot has done a fantastic job producing this history. As title sponsor of the event we fully endorse ‘The Ultimate Challenge’ as a fitting tribute to all of the walkers whose determination, dedication and enthusiasm over the past century have made the Manx Telecom Parish Walk the popular event it is today.”
Manx Telecom’s association with the Parish Walk goes back to 2007 when they began providing timing and results services. The Island’s leading telecommunications company began a three year deal as title sponsor in 2012, and recently announced that their support for the event has been extended until 2017. Entries for the 2014 race opened on December 1. Go to www.parishwalk.com to enter and for full details about the event.