This sculpture celebrating Larne’s tourism hay days was commissioned in November 2019 with a budget of £80,000. The eventual winning artist, Kevin Killen, crafted the stunning piece of art that pays tribute to famous local figures such as the hotelier and “Father of tourism” in Ireland Henry McNeil.
The sculpture showcases a lone man riding a jaunting car with a steed horse pulling the vehicle along. The man and horse are covered in metallic words of famous local places and tourist sites like the Gobbins, Inver, and Glens of Antrim wrapping the entirety of their bodies.
McNeill and other tourism businesses ran daily jaunting car tours of the Antrim Coast Road to visit the world-renowned Giant’s Causeway, as well as many other sites along the way including Glenarm Village, Waterfoot beach, and Glenariff Forest (The Queen of the Glens). The jaunting cars once lined the streets outside the many hotels that were present in Larne town center at the time.
The sculpture is part of a reinvestment and rejuvenation plan for Larne Town Centre. The hope is that it will inspire the local community, as well as bring in tourists to the area. The sculpture was paid for by the Mid and East Antrim Council and the Department for Communities. The project was initiated by Larne Renovation Generation, a local community group based in the town.
Know Before You Go
The Jaunting Car Sculpture is located just off Larne Town Centre on Pound Street opposite Larne Museum and Art’s Centre. The best way to get there is either by train to Larne or to the bus station, then walk through the town center to Pound Street or you could make your way to the A8 Dual Carriageway and drive to Larne.