An estimated 400-plus guests have attended a birthday party in Belfast for Northern Irish Olympic gold medal winner Lady Mary Peters.
The former athlete was marking her 80th birthday.
Attendees gathered at Titanic Belfast for a black-tie dinner tonight – one of a series of events organised to raise cash for ‘Mary’s Race to a Million’ campaign.
Launched two years ago, the initiative is more than two-thirds of the way to reaching its £1 million target which in intended to ensure funding and support for Northern Ireland’s future high-performance sportspeople.
Athletes presented a choregraphed performance alongside local choir Adoro – both created by top musical director and performer Ashley Fulton.
Belfast songwriter and singer Brian Kennedy gave a rendition of ‘Love, Life, Happiness’ and guests who travelled from across the water included decathlon star Daley Thompson and rower Katherine Grainger – both Olympic gold medallists.
Local sporting talent present to wish Lady Mary ‘Happy Birthday’ included rugby legends Willie-John McBride and Mike Gibson along with a representative squad from Ulster’s 1999 European Cup winning rugby team.
To highlight Dame Mary’s commitment to sport an exhibition – described by organisers as a “micro-museum” – of photographs and memorabilia was on show to illustrate Mary’s life.
It included Mary’s winning top and shoes from the 1972 Munich Olympic Games.