Rev. Tom Farrell - OA Stories

Today on OA Stories and as part of our Olympics edit Trevor Llewelyn interviewed the three time Olympian and an inspiration for his own athletics career, Rev Tom Farrell. Tom was the College Chaplain from 1974 through to 1981.

Tom was  a  Harrier  when  he  first represented  Great  Britain  in  Melbourne 1956  as  a 400m hurdler. He then went  to  Rome in 1960 running the 800m and reaching the quarter-finals.  His reasoning  for  the  switch  was  admirably  honest. 

"The  Olympic  400m  hurdles  will  be  won  in  about  49.2  seconds,"  he  said.  

"Which  means  that  to  come  near  that  you  have  to  be  able  to  run  a  quarter  of  a  mile  in  46  seconds.  I cannot do that."

In addition to his appearances at the Olympics, Tom represented England in the 440 yards hurdles at the 1958 British Empire and Commonwealth Games, and in 1960 set a British record of 51.0 seconds at the White City in an international match against Italy.

Tom then went  to  his  third  Olympic Games  in  Munich 1972, this  time  as  one  of  a  team  of  eight  chaplains  to  be  on  hand  to  offer  spiritual  advice  to  competitors.

Tom has recently published a book tracing his extraordinary journey as an amateur athlete and three Olympic Games. 

If you are an OA interested in purchasing a signed copy of Toms book please do contact us and we will put you in touch (£15 +£3pp).


Front Cover of Tom Farrells book the making of an Olympian



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