The Sentinel was great at highlighting local achievements and achievers who would otherwise not have got the recognition they deserved. There are names that appear across the years and Ernie Plimmer from Westburn was one of these. The Road Runner as he was also known came to fame late in life for his sprinting, made the more remarkable as his running started him winning races in his fifties. The Sentinel covered his remarkable running career and featured an interview with him in 1985 when he was sixty eight. By then he had already won the veteran’s New Year Sprint in 1981. Ernie’s achievements were not only well known because of his age, but also because he was registered blind, having only partial eyesight. This never seemed to hold him back and he was a well known figure locally as he trained round the Wester Hailes paths. You can read the full interview by clicking here on Ernie Plimmer.
Ernie won two gold medals in the British Veteran Athletics Championships in 1984, These were his first championships and he went on to win the 100 metres to become the British Champion in the 65-69 age group. He then won the 200 metres, leaving the opposition floundering. You can read about his achievements by clicking here on Sentinel August 1984. In 1985 he produced a crowd raising performance at the Braemar Highland Games, being narrowly beaten into fourth by competitors decades younger than himself. The crowd of 20,000 then demanded that Ernie take a lap of honour.
Ernie continued to compete and in 1987 at the age of 70, he won another 3 gold medals in Glasgow, winning the 100, 200 and 400 metres races. You can read this report about Ernie by clicking here on Sentinel 1987.