Wednesday, 16 May 2012

Olympic torch's arrival sparks local countdown

The Olympic Torch will arrive in the UK on Friday 18th May – sparking the countdown to when it will travel through the Lancaster district.

Five towns and villages in the district are on the official route of the Torch as it makes its 70 day journey around the UK to the Olympic Park in London.

The local leg will mark the half way point – day 35 – and take place on Friday 22nd June.

Plans are in place to give the Torch a warm welcome as it makes its way from Carnforth all the way to Lancaster, with more than 10,000 school children confirmed as taking part.

Specially designated school viewing areas have been set aside so that the children and their teachers provide colour, atmosphere and support for all the Torch Bearers through our district during this once in a lifetime event.

The party atmosphere will be complemented by entertainment at various points along the routes – details of which will be confirmed nearer the time.

Councilor Ron Sands, Cabinet member with responsibility for children and young people, said: “The build up to London 2012 and its legacy has a focus on young people.

“With that in mind, the city council has been working closely with schools to provide safe designated viewing areas along the Torch Relay route to give the Olympic Torch a warm welcome.

“Local people can also plan now where they can watch the Torch – we’re blessed in that it will be travelling nearly all the way from Carnforth through to Scotforth on foot, so there will be plenty of opportunity for everyone to line the streets and cheer on the inspirational torchbearers.”

A map of the route is available at www.lancaster.gov.uk/london2012, along with traffic and travel advice on how to prepare for the day.

Approximate times for the Torch’s journey through the Lancaster district’s five communities are:

- Carnforth – 9.47am to 9.59am
- Bolton-le-Sands – 10.03am to 10.17am
- Hest Bank – 10.20am to 10.33am
- Morecambe – 10.36am to 12.02pm
- Lancaster (Scale Hall to Our Lady’s) – 12.03pm to 12.29pm
- Lancaster (Our Lady’s to Scotforth) – 1.32pm to 2.08pm

Local people are also being invited to sign up to be part of the ‘Local Leader’ programme and celebrate the arrival of the Torch.  More information is available at www.london2012.com/localleaders

The Torch Relay will be followed by the Velocity Festival – a celebration of sport in the Lancaster district.

The festival will feature a cycle race in Lancaster city centre on the Friday evening (June 22) before moving to Morecambe for a weekend of watersports including sailing, kitesurfing, jet skis and kayaking.  There will also be music and a food fair to complement the sporting activities.

• For more information on the Velocity Festival and a schedule of events visit www.lancaster.gov.uk/velocity

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