Hartlepool schoolboy becomes ‘one of the country’s youngest pigeon fanciers’

Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now
One Hartlepool schoolboy is making his mark by taking up a “dying sport” and becoming “one of the country’s youngest pigeon fanciers”.

Darren Brown, seven, is believed to be one of the youngest pigeon fanciers in the UK, first getting into the sport at the age of six.

The Rift House Primary School pupil was introduced to pigeon racing by his granddad, Darren Ferguson, in a bid to get him out of the house and meet new people.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Mr Ferguson said: “In January, I asked Darren if he wanted to race pigeons for a hobby and he said ‘yes but do I win trophies?’ I told him it was for fun and to see what happens.

Darren Brown, also known as Little D, at his pigeon loft.Darren Brown, also known as Little D, at his pigeon loft.
Darren Brown, also known as Little D, at his pigeon loft.

"I believed it would be a good idea to get him out of the house and give him a hobby where he would meet the older generation where he would learn morals and respect and gain more confidence in himself.”

Darren, known to his comrades as Little D, has a second-hand pigeon loft that he uses to house and care for his pigeons, and has been learning the ropes alongside his granddad since March.

He got his first two pigeons in March and has since collected around 50 birds, receiving donations from people across the country.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

His granddad said: “He was a very lucky lad, having all his birds gifted by some kind-hearted pigeon fanciers from Hartlepool, Wales, Scotland and Leeds. He can’t thank them enough for their kindness.”

Darren Brown holds his favourite pigeon.Darren Brown holds his favourite pigeon.
Darren Brown holds his favourite pigeon.

Darren’s mum, Kiahjade Brown, said: “Pigeon racing is slowly dying out. Not many youngsters are interested as they were many years ago. He has his own little fan club and has received many pigeon donations.”

His granddad added: “There are not many young people in the sport. It is a dying trade, a dying sport. Most people are of the older generation.”

Mr Ferguson is already looking forward to next year, when the pair will begin breeding their own pigeons.

He said: “There’s a lot that goes into it.”

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Darren has already completed seven races this year and is looking forward to upcoming events in Doncaster and Blackpool.

The North East Homing Union has awarded Darren the Buckton Trophy and the young fancier award medal, which he is receiving on Friday, November 17, in South Shields.