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‘It doesn’t stop here’ – Man promises new political party after 123 mile walk

Martin Critten completed a 123-mile walk to Dublin last week and says that the support he received along the way gives him a platform to form a new political party shortly.

Martin Critten on his journey last week
Martin Critten on his journey last week
Image: Martin Critten

A MAN WHO walked from Limerick to Dublin in the hope of gathering support to form a new political party says that hundreds have been in touch and that he plans to launch the party over the summer.

Englishman Martin Critten, 54, says the 123-mile walk from Limerick to Dublin, which he completed just over a week ago, was “absolutely tremendous” and that the support he received along the way has emboldened him to press on with plans to launch a new party.

“It was absolutely tremendous,” he told TheJournal.ie this week. “We’ve received hundreds of emails, tweets, and calls and people were beeping their horns as I was walking along.

“Most people I met were just relieved to see somebody doing something. Somebody is actually going to do something. It almost felt like they are in a strait jacket and all of a sudden I’ve presented them with an opportunity, not an absolute solution but an opportunity to do something.

Critten told us earlier this month that he was tired of the current political parties “foisting their agenda” on the people of Ireland saying he hoped to garner support from “like minded people who are passionate enough” to help him form a new party .

The part-time consultant said that the walk had increased interest in his website and organisation Sli Nios Fearr “a hundred fold” and that he now expected to have enough names  - between 600 and 900 – to officially form a political party over the summer.

“Most of the people that I’ve spoken to are interested in setting something up locally,” he said saying that he hoped that branches of his new party could be set up in Kildare, Cork, Waterford, Bray and Dublin in the coming months.

Martin Critten

He hopes that once his party is registered he can start distributing more leaflets to people as well as engage more interest from the press.

The party, as it stands, has no manifesto but the idea is to build one from ideas that people submit through the organisation’s website.

Critten, originally from the north of England, continued: “I’m, trying to get democracy going again where people can say something. It’s floored me the response.

“People have done nothing but stop me in the street, you can see relief in their faces and that’s what I’ve captured really.”

Of the walk, Critten said that he averaged around 20-22 miles a day along the 123 mile route through towns and villages across the country, leaving his “ankle a bit sore” but his confidence high after the journey.

He also claimed that he did not meet anyone who was in favour of the Fiscal Compact treaty.

“There was nobody that ever came up to me and siad they were voting Yes. Everybody I spoke to all said No for one reason or another,” he said.

Critten added that he hoped to have further announcements about the formation of his political party over the summer, adding:  ”We really do need to create this alternative.

“We need a new start, fresh faces… It’s early days but it’s going to happen.”

Read: Man to walk from Limerick to Dublin hoping to form new political party

About the author:

Hugh O'Connell

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