Bertie takes to the roads

INSTITUTE secretary-manager Bertie Dowey took to the roads to raise money for the club in December 1986.

He completed a 25 mile run on a circuit of Lurgan, Gilford, Banbridge, Waringstown and Donacloney in five hours 23 minutes 15 seconds.

“I’m very surprised how well I feel and would be quite happy to do it all again,” he said.

Bertie, a former soccer referee and Irish League linesman, boosted the Institute’s finances through sponsorship, by asking people to predict the time it would take him to complete the 25 miles.

“I honestly thought it would have taken a lot longer, particularly as I was struggling over the first seven miles and was considering giving up,” he explained.

A problem for him was the extreme cold as he set out at 7am in freezing conditions with snow falling.

“It was slippery and dangerous, particularly around Gilford. I thought of postponing the attempt until the weather changed,” he revealed. But fortified by a flask of soup and later tea and sandwiches he completed his task.

Bertie relaxed in a hot bath on his return but was still full of energy when he called at the ‘Mail’ office.

“The backs of my legs are sore but I have no other reaction,” said Bertie.