Nine-year-old Sean Davidson from Brocagh will tomorrow attempt to walk to school from his house, approximately 150 yards, in a bold move which has gathered criticism and admiration in equal measures within the community. The last known child to walk to school in Tyrone – Peter Campbell from Glenelly – will be there to offer support and guidance as well pose for photos before and after the event with the brave Davidson. His mother, Mary, said that although she was apprehensive, she supported her son in what she described as ‘the journey of a lifetime’.
‘We were watching Frank Mitchell’s Weather Watchers and he’s predicting patchy rain and a stiff breeze for tomorrow. I hope it’s not abandoned. We are a four car family and decided we had to make a difference for the environment’s sake, and Sean came up with the walk to school idea. Other parents claimed we’re clean mad as a child shouldn’t be walking these days what with their wee chubby legs and possibility of swallowing midges. I hope our wee soldier will do us proud and make history.”
Sean will have the back up of his father following behind in his 2012 Land Rover Evoque in case of emergencies and he will be equipped with an iPad, Sat Nav, a self-erecting tent and a rucksack packed with crisps, minerals and Mars Bars. The principal of Brocagh PS confirmed they’ll be lining the last 20 yards of the route to offer moral support but was also aware of the pitfalls young Davidson may encounter:
‘Donnelly’s collie up the road barks like mad and sticks his nose through the fence as you pass and there’s quite a nasty incline for a couple of metres just before he arrives at the crossing with the lollipop lady. I only hope his new trainers hold out. You never know, this could be the beginnings of an Olympic medal winner for Brocagh’
The Brocagh Obesity Awareness Clinic claim this is only the start of a new mindset in the area and hope it will increase interest in their 100 metre sponsored walk next month.