Did you know that Northern Ireland has her own Olympic winner?


In the 1972 Summer Olympics in Munich, Mary Elizabeth Peters, competing for Great Britain and Northern Ireland won the gold medal in the women’s pentathlon.

She had finished 4th in 1964 and 9th in 1968.

To win the gold medal, she narrowly beat the local favourite, West Germany’s Heide Rosendahl, by 10 points – setting a world record score.

Mary Peters was born in Halewood Lancashire, but moved to Ballymena at age eleven because her dad needed to move because of his job.

Her father was an important figure in her life. He encouraged her athletic career by building her home practice facilities as birthday gifts. She qualified as a teacher and worked while training.

After finishing her sport career, Mary Peters turned to charity work.

Peters established a charitable Sports Trust in 1975 (now known as the Mary Peters Trust) to support talented young sportsmen and women, both able-bodied and disabled.

The Trust had made a staggering number of awards. It made a difference to the lives of thousands of young athletes from across Northern Ireland.