The Jameson name can boast global appeal within the world of whiskey but also serves as a long-standing part of the Portadown landscape thanks to a variety of family business and sports interests.
Two cousins from Portadown will hit the road tomorrow (Saturday) morning in the name of charity to bridge that link between the town’s Jameson family and Dublin-based Irish whiskey distillery.
David and Mark have a personal agenda to go alongside aims of raising funds for the Southern Area Hospice Services by tackling the 85-mile route from the family-owned Jameson’s Bar in Portadown to the Dublin distillery.
“We have taken on a few charity cycles in the past and talked for some time about going from our Jameson’s Bar in Thomas Street to Dublin’s Old Jameson Whiskey Distillery,” said David. “Once we agreed on the challenge and charity it was also important for us to tackle the cycle in memory of our grandmother Grace.
“I turned 30 this April and Mark shares my birthday but is 10 years older.
“Our granny was a big part of our lives growing up and with the Jameson name such a big part of the whole idea we felt it would be a nice touch to do the cycle in her memory.”
Both enjoy active lifestyles - with David a regular at the Enzo’s Sports boxing gym and Portadown BBOB Football Club player, plus Mark is a member of the ONE Fitness Gym.
“We have both cycled the Lap Of The Lough in the past and a few other long-distance events so know how to prepare and train,” said David. “Having those previous cycles under our belts will obviously help and there is support at hand if something ends up going wrong along the route.
“The plan is to head off from Jameson’s Bar around 7 o’clock or so on Saturday morning then arrive at Jameson’s distillery that afternoon.
“We expect it to take around six or seven hours, then will get the train back up home for a well-earned refreshment.
“We have looked up the route online and can take recognised cycle paths all the way along Portadown, Newry, Dundalk and Dublin.
“It should be a great laugh for a worthy cause.
“Our initial target was £500 and we have now raised over £600 before even setting off.
“People have enjoyed a laugh at the whole idea of going from Jameson’s Bar to the Jameson’s distillery but also the fact that it is in memory of our granny and, of course, in support of Southern Area Hospice Services.”