May 20 2013 Latest news:
By Laura Burge
Sunday, July 8, 2012
The Olympic flame has passed through Stevenage, with thousands turning out to watch the historic occasion.
More than 8,000 lined the High Street alone for the occasion, despite the rain.
Twelve-year-old Luca Wells, from Stevenage, carried the flame to cheers from the crowds during this part of the leg, past his school, Thomas Alleyne.
Other torchbearers included wheelchair badminton player Gobi Ranganathan and athlete John Mayor.
John Lloyd, Stevenage mayor, said: “One of the biggest things in the history of the Olympics is actually here in Stevenage.
“I never worry about the weather when it’s such a happy occasion.
“I think this raises the profile of Stevenage. Stevenage is a very sports mad town.
“I’m very pleased and excited that we have been chosen. We are very happy to play our part.”
Cllr Sharon Taylor, leader of Stevenage Borough Council, said: “What a fantastic atmosphere and experience it was, a once in a life time opportunity for Stevenage to get involved in the Olympics.
“People in their tens and thousands got involved, helping send the torch on its way.
“This is part of Stevenage’s history.”
Crowds started arriving around 9.30am this morning.
Sian Gardiner, who lives in Bedfordshire but is from Stevenage originally, arrived with her 18-month-old and four-year-old daughters just after 10am.
“They’ve got their Olympic t-shirts on, although it’s not the weather for it,” she said.
“The oldest is very excited - she’s been learning about the Olympics at school, and been having Olympic fun days.
“This is a once in a lifetime opportunity.”
Katrina Wright and Jon Barnes, both from Stevenage, have been waiting since 10am.
“We’re really excited, it’s a good day,” said Katrina.
“We don’t care about the weather, we’d have come anyway.”
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