Northern Ireland was a very dark place in the 1980s. A hunger strike was looming, street violence and tit for tat murders were an everyday occurrence, but in a small corner of West Belfast something extraordinary was happening. In a factory in Dunmurry a unique new sports car was being built, a DMC 12, a style icon for the late 20th century. For 2 years John DeLorean brought hope to communities flattened by the Troubles in Northern Ireland.
This is the story of that two year dream as seen through the eyes of key employees - including a union representative, an assembly line worker and a supervisor. Over 9,000 DMCs were produced during this period, cars which today still retain their cult status. The workforce put their heart and souls into this car plant believing that this was going to be the start of a better future, and that they too could 'live the dream.
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The one that got away.
Haven't read the print version but, I enjoyed this audiobook very much.
Absolutely. For anyone brought up in Belfast at the time of the Delorean car factory, this book is in part a nostalgic trip down memory lane, but also a reminder of what could have been. The apparent togetherness in a workforce who never previously had thought it was acceptable, never mind possible.
Hearing the Alternative Ulster, Stiff Little Fingers, musical intro blasting out of my car stereo brought a smile to my face while I was listening. Same at the end with Here Comes The Summer, by the Undertones. I enjoyed hearing about the secret messages scribed into each of the cars before they left the assembly lines. Even if I don't agree with the political symbolism, I love the idea of the subversive signature on every car, while they wind their way down highway 101 in California or somewhere exotic.
I still remember the car transporters passing my school on the Lisburn Road as they made their way to the Belfast docks and the tremendous sense of excitement. I'm not sure if John Delorean was ever, or could ever be, considered an honourably Ulsterman, but 36 years later his car still evokes great pride. God knows, we needed something good to promote Northern Ireland in the early eighties.
- chris parnham