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Wednesday, 14th July 2021

Australian Olympic swimmer proud of her Drogheda roots

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Maddy Gough pictured just after she broke the Australian 1500m freestyle record at the Australian Olympic trials.

Sports fans throughout the world, including of course Drogheda, are eagerly awaiting the start of the delayed 2020 Olympics which kick off in Tokyo on Friday, July 23 followed by three weeks of competition for the world’s elite athletes. 

One local family has a particular interest in these games though, they’ll be cheering for a young swimming prodigy called Madeleine (Maddy) Gough who has strong family connections to Drogheda and will be representing Australia in the Olympic pool. 

Maddy’s grandfather, Arthur Gough, was born in Drogheda but lived for many years in Suffolk in the UK before his death in 2018. 

Last month the 21-year-old from Australia’s Gold Coast booked her ticket to Tokyo by demolishing the Australian 1500m freestyle record at the Australian Olympic trials, registering the third fastest time in the world this year in the process.

The Gough family hail originally from Donore where Christopher Gough (1884-1943) married his sweetheart Anne nee Carr (1884-1951) in the parish Church in 1907 and together they ran The Thatch pub on the Donore Road and had six children, four boys and two girls. 

Christopher is buried in the old cemetery in Donore while Anne is buried in her family’s plot in Dublin. 

Peter Francis Gough (1908-1989) and his brothers Joseph, Anthony and Frank were born in the Thatch. They later moved to a bigger premises, Gough’s Pub in Trinity Street, which later became known as Foley’s pub. 

Maddy’s Dad Jeremy told Drogheda Life that his daughter was very excited to know that a news outlet from her grandad’s home town had been in contact. 

Maddy still has extended family members living locally, both in Drogheda and Donore, who will no doubt be in front of their TVs cheering her on as she enters the pool in Tokyo.

Maddy told Drogheda Life that she is thrilled to be going to the Olympics, “While I will proudly be representing Australia in Tokyo, I am also very proud of my Irish roots” she said.

“It means so much to me to know that I still have people from my Grandad’s home town who will be supporting me.”

Video:

Madeleine Gough l Australian Record Breaking Moment | 2021 Australian Swimming Trials | Amazon Prime

Jun 15, 2021 

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