Whisky welcomed tourists on Larne’s first guided tour

The cost of a holiday in Larne, including travel was £1 in 1890, according to a report in the Larne Times in 1959.

The report suggested that 1890 was the first year in which an organised tour came to Larne.

Visitors ventured no further than Glenariffe Glen. This was the highlight of an itinerary pioneered by Hentry McNeill.

Two parties would leave Larne, one by train to Ballymena and onwards by the narrow gauge line to Parkmore, the other by horse brakes and jaunt cars before swapping at Parkmore for the return journey.

Tourism in the town expanded with the development of the Laharna Hotel, firstly, by the Holden family and then by the railway authority.

However, Henry McNeill was credited as the first man to recognise the potential of tourism in the town.

He greeted his guests on their return from a jaunt in an open horsedrawn carriage with a glass of whisky.

There was a revival after World War I, then boosted in 1924, with the advent of the motor car.

At a speed of 12 mph, visitors were able to tour the Glens of Antrim and Giant’s Causeway in the same day.