He has created history first in the Olympics and now again as one of the first people to be inducted into Derby’s first augmented reality walk of fame, Made in Derby.
Louis George Martin MBE was born in Kingston, Jamaica where he started weight-lifting – something he excelled in when his family immigrated to England and settled in Derby, the UK’s number one hi-tech city and home to many global brands such as Rolls-Royce, Toyota and Bombardier.
Hailed as Britain’s greatest-ever weightlifter, Martin, who was from the Windrush generation, won four world mid-heavyweight championships, Olympic silver and bronze medals and three Commonwealth titles.
Now he’s achieved another first after he was one of 10 people selected from more than 300 submissions by the residents of Derby to be inducted into the walk of fame as someone Made in Derby and with whom Derbians are proud to be associated.
His son, Dr Richard Martin, Assistant Director of Public Heath for Derby City, says the accolade bestowed on his father, who died in 2015 at the age of 78, has not yet fully sunk in.
“My wife and I were still pinching ourselves last night as we looked at old photos of dad. He was a lion of a man and a giant in so many ways. He had intellectual and sporting prowess among numerous other qualities,” he said at the ceremony on Saturday.
“Everyone in Derby loved dad and he dearly loved Derby but never once did he ever forget his Jamaican roots.
“During his lifting career he was a huge man with a beard and a head full of hair. He looked like a lion on stage and roared like a lion but he was a very gentle man. There will never be another Louis Martin,” he added.
In this city, which has been at the cutting edge of industry and technology for centuries, comes another first – an augmented reality trail.
The trail combines public art installations with computer-generated information to tell the Derby story through the people, like Louis Martin, who has made a significant contribution to the city.
Eight ceramic mosaic stars with cast-iron frames will be installed in the city centre streets.
Each one is made of locally-forged cast iron – one of the many key industries associated with Derby. Artistically, each depicts a leading light of the city. And in terms of augmented reality, each engages with the visitor to show how their story has contributed towards the very essence of Derby.
When scanned with the Made in Derby App, a computer-generated image is superimposed on a user’s view of the real world, providing people with a way of learning more about the individuals and their achievements.
Derby becomes the first city in Europe to use this technology in its walk of fame. The app is available free of cost from Google Play and the App Store.
Made in Derby is a joint project, involving Derby City Council, Derby Telegraph and local business leaders.
Chair of the Selection Panel and Editor of the Derby Telegraph Steve Hall said: “Derby is a city with a fantastic heritage but perhaps we have been guilty of not celebrating the achievements of our most influential sons and daughters as much, or as publicly, as we should. Made in Derby tells the story of some of those who made our city such a fantastic place. We hope it will be a source of pride and inspiration.”