‘The weans from Coleraine’

Presseye Northern Ireland - 02nd August 2012 Mandatory Credit - Photo-William Cherry/Presseye''London 2012 Olympic Games - Rowing''The Chambers family (from left) Joshua and Abi,(Peters wife and child) mum Gillian, dad Eric and sister Rebekah celebrate the silver medal Richard and Peter won in the final of the Lightweight Four in the London 2012 Olympics at Eton Dorney.
Presseye Northern Ireland - 02nd August 2012 Mandatory Credit - Photo-William Cherry/Presseye''London 2012 Olympic Games - Rowing''The Chambers family (from left) Joshua and Abi,(Peters wife and child) mum Gillian, dad Eric and sister Rebekah celebrate the silver medal Richard and Peter won in the final of the Lightweight Four in the London 2012 Olympics at Eton Dorney.
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The mother of Team GB’s silver medal-winning brothers said she will not be pleased with them if they are disappointed with their “amazing achievement”.

Their mother, Gillian, who said they would still just be her ‘weans from Coleraine’, said silver was a fantastic result.

“I am completely delighted,” she said. “That was a ridiculously tough race. It was amazing, I am so proud. I hope they are not disappointed. At that level that achievement is just too fantastic to consider it a disappointment.

“It was an unbelievably tough race. If they are disappointed, I will be disappointed with them. I think they will be very proud of what they have done.

“I’m enormously proud of them. They’re good boys, they’ve worked hard. As parents you can ask no more of your children than to work hard, give their best and reach their full potential. We’re thrilled to bits.

“Seeing them on the line, I did feel quite emotional. There were a few tears. It is momentous. Yes, we’re terribly proud of our boys but we’d be proud of them had they never got into their boat. They are just our weans!”

Older brother Richard, 27, was called the wrong name during the medal ceremony, when the stadium announcer introduced him as “Richard Williams”.

His mother laughed off the gaffe. “We know who he is, that’s all the matters to us,” she said.

Raucous GB fans gave the four rowers a deafening reception as they glided past the stands on a lap of honour following the ceremony. The volume levels cranked up even further when they got to their feet and raised their hands in the air as the boat rocked below them.

“I think they just wanted to say thank you,” said Gillian. “The crowd were just so unbelievable and I know they really appreciated that.”

Dad Eric said he is very proud of his sons no matter what they’ve achieved.

“I’m just so proud of the boys, even if they weren’t rowing,” he said.

“They have taken us to countries that we would never have been to all over the world and this is the pinnacle of their career so far.

“To get an Olympic silver medal is just fantastic.

“They have worked so hard for this.

“They live such disciplined lives. They are in bed at 9.30pm every night and up early every morning.

“They don’t party and look at what they eat very carefully, it’s a lifestyle for them.

“They have great support around them though.

“The noise was so incredible when the boats just arrived at the stands and the support they have received has just been wonderful.

“We have had loads of conratulatory messages via text and Facebook from so many people.

“I know there was so much interest from everyone in Coleraine.

“Things will probably get back to normal in a couple of weeks time.

“The boys will come home and spend a bit time here.

“They’ll go to church as they are very involved in church life.

“There will probably be some sort of reception for them when they come home.

“It’s all very hard to grasp at the moment as we have watched them since they were 13 years old at the side of the river.”

Both parents and sister Rebekah, who is a solicitor in Newcastle Upon Tyne, have watched the boys’ careers blossom with great pride.

“It’s amazing, sometimes it feels unbelievable to be honest,” said their mother.

“Sometimes Eric and I see a picture of them on television and just laugh because we just can’t believe it.”

Who knows there might even be another Chambers rower in a few years time. Richard’s wife Abi was there holding 9 month old Joshua, but dad says he’ll let him make up his own mind.

“He’s had plenty of pictures taken and he’s been on television so it will be great to play it back to him someday but I’m not going to bombard him with rowing stuff, I want him to grow up and be his own man,” said his dad.