The countdown is well and truly on until the Olympic Torch Relay comes to Wigan Borough – and on Monday 19 March, its exact route will be revealed!
Leader of Wigan Council, Lord Smith said: “We are all tremendously proud to welcome the Torch. The borough has a rich sporting heritage and we’ll be making the most of the time when the eyes of the world are on us.”
The Torch Convoy will be nearly a fortnight into its journey across the UK when, on the afternoon 31 May 2012, it arrives in Lowton.
16 year old Cameron Foster from Hindley will be there. The Winstanley College student will be one of the official Torchbearers. “It’s a once in a generation opportunity and my family are over the moon!” says Cameron. On Monday, Cameron will announce specific street level details of a route which we already know will bring the Torch through Abram, Wigan and Hindley.
A dozen vehicles will make their way through Wigan Borough. For most of the route, the Torch will be carried as a relay by a series of runners, although for parts of the route, it will be carried in a vehicle. The Torch is expected to be in the borough for around three hours.
Lord Smith adds: “The route has been selected by the London organisers and already hundreds of people across the whole borough have arranged events, parties and activities to make the very best of the day.”
On Torch Day, there will be volleyball and Thai boxing in Walmseley Park with pupils from Rose Bridge High School in Ince, community events in Abram, home of the Olympian Jenny Meadows. In Hindley there’s both patriotism, in the form of a Veterans’ salute as the Torch passes the town hall and slapstick, with the residents’ association planning their own ‘It’s a Knockout’ sporting party.
Not to be outdone, there’s plenty going on in parts of the borough away from the Torch Relay itself. Leigh Sports Village is planning a triathlon as part of a week of linked events and several Worsley Mesnes schools are planning Olympic themed events. Parties in the parks are planned at Ashton’s Jubilee Park (Sunday 18th May), Mesnes Park (on the morning of the Torch Day 31st May) and later at Pennington Hall Park in Leigh.
Wigan town centre will play host to The Anvil Street Drummers, art workshops, cycling demonstrations, sustainable transport events and promotions from the NHS, Wigan Leisure and Culture Trust and Wigan Youth Zone
“If you are planning an Olympic themed event, we want to hear from you,” says Lord Smith. “Or if you want to line the route and enjoy our moment in the spotlight, we’d love to see your photos from the day.”
Keep up to date on our special Olympics pages, with news of events and practical details such as travel planning on what is expected to be a very busy but highly memorable afternoon.