The Claret Jug, golf’s most iconic trophy, visited local schools in Coleraine and Ballymoney ahead of The 148th Open being played at Royal Portrush as a thank you to pupils who will be employed as litter pickers during the Championship.
Around 250 pupils led by around 30 teachers from Coleraine Grammar School, Loreto College and Dalriada School will ensure that Royal Portrush looks its very best for the tens of thousands of visitors who will pour through its gates when The Open returns to the famous Dunluce Links in July.
The pupils were given the opportunity to get up close to the Claret Jug and have their picture taken with the trophy today, while they will also receive tickets to attend The Open and merchandise from official supplier Hugo Boss.
Richard Beggs, Teacher at Coleraine Grammar School, said, “The pupils and I are really excited about joining the thousands of people involved in helping to stage The Open each year and we look forward to welcoming fans and visitors to the town of Portrush in July.”
Johnnie Cole-Hamilton, Executive Director – Championships at The R&A, said, “It’s fantastic to see that there is great excitement about the prospect of The Open coming to Royal Portrush and we are very thankful to people living in the local communities in and around Portrush for their support. We are looking forward to enjoying a true celebration of golf in July.”
The Mayor of Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council Councillor Brenda Chivers said, “There’s a real sense of excitement among the young people involved in today’s visit and it’s inspiring to see them so engaged and enthusiastic about The Open.
“Tens of thousands of visitors will travel here to enjoy the event in July and I have no doubt that their experience on the course, matched by our warm welcome, first class hospitality and unrivalled scenery will create an occasion to remember for everyone involved.”