Author Danny’s charity fundraising mission

Danny McFaul pictured with his new book, Residents of Larne 1901.  INLT 08-604-CON
Danny McFaul pictured with his new book, Residents of Larne 1901. INLT 08-604-CON

A KIND-HEARTED pensioner and author has pledged to donate all proceeds from the sales of his latest book to a local charity.

Former Larne man Danny McFaul has penned a number of books relating to his family’s history, delving deep into his own past to shed light on previous generations of McFaul’s who called Larne their home.

For his latest work, the 78-year-old painstakingly sifted through census records from turn of the century Larne to compile a list of the town’s residents on a street-by-street basis.

The 293-page book, entitled Residents of Larne 1901, contains the name, age, address, religion and occupation of over 33,000 people who lived in the town at that time.

Danny has printed 50 copies of the book at his own expense, and plans to sell them at the Age NI shop on Dunluce Street in Larne. The books will retail at £6 and all takings will go towards the charity.

Danny was born at 19 Ronald Street in 1934, but he and his five siblings were sent to live with his aunt at 22 Mill Street after his father was killed in North Africa during the war in 1943.

“My mother had died less than a year before that, and my aunt Sarah’s husband was also killed during the war. She had four children of her own, so there were 11 of us crammed into this small house,” he added.

Despite his tragic childhood, Danny still has fond memories of growing up in Mill Street, which is now the Riverdale complex. He was educated at McKenna Memorial public elementary school at Chapel Lane in Larne, and later at the Christian Brothers College at Harding Street in Belfast.

He married Margaret Thompson in 1954 and joined the Army four years later, leaving Larne behind.

Danny went on to father three children and now lives in Northampton, but he has never forgotten his Larne heritage.

When his wife passed away in 1996, Danny found solace in his love of family history.

“It all started when I discovered that my mother was born in the workhouse at Larne in 1901. Genealogy had been a hobby of mine for some time, but it soon developed into an obsession.

“Even when I was in the Army, I was still gathering whatever information I could find about my family history,” he told the Times.

“I spent about five months researching this new book, but I am passionate about the subject and am not doing this for financial gain.

“The reason I decided to donate the proceeds to Age NI is because my late wife used to be manageress of a branch in Northampton (back when it was called Help the Aged) and I used to volunteer there.

“I have a lot of respect for the work they do and am just pleased that I can help them out in some small way,” Danny concluded.