Tony Rafferty celebrity print 1973
Tony Rafferty celebrity print
Dimensions (H x W x D)
64 x 22.5 x 6 cm
TONY RAFFERTY / FIRST MAN TO RUN BETWEEN SYDNEY AND MELBOURNE / 2ND JANUARY TO 18TH JANUARY 1973 / DISTANCE 658 MILES ALONG THE PRINCESS HIGHWAY / MADE HIS MARK HERE / APRIL 2ND 1973
City of Melbourne Art and Heritage Collection
This concrete footprint was formerly located as a part of the iconic McEwans celebrity pavement. Between 1972 and 1994, scores of celebrities had their handprints and footprints immortalised in cement at the entrance to the McEwans hardware store on Bourke Street. The City of Melbourne Art and Heritage Collection acquired a number of these impressed concrete slabs from the original celebrity pavement in 2005.
"Tony Rafferty (born Belfast, 1939) achieved fame in January 1973 as the first person to run from Melbourne to Sydney (1,058 km), pioneering ultra-distance running in Australia. While the inscription on the McEwans celebrity pavement – ‘the first man to run’ – is strictly correct, Rafferty was not the first person to complete the distance between the two capital cities on foot. In 1931, race-walker Alf Robinson had covered the route in the opposite direction, from Sydney to Melbourne." - Robyn Annear, 2023