STAFF at an engineering company looked on with great interest as the Olympic Torch Relay came through Comet country, having helped start its journey last month.

Chasestead Ltd in Letchworth GC has built 10 Olympic cauldrons which will hold flames in all the stadia being used for London 2012, with one lit by David Beckham after arriving in Cornwall from Greece in May.

The cauldrons took two months to make at the company’s premises in Icknield Way, using handmade tools to press the stainless steel and aluminium, before being finished using a combination of traditional craftsman’s skills and state-of-the-art laser cutting machinery.

The business, which employs 49 people and specialises in pressed sheet metal, also built holders for the torch which were used during the relay through Stevenage and Letchworth GC last Sunday.

Managing director Richard Wilson said: “It was going right past us so I went down to have a look. I was pleased to see how many people were out supporting it.”

Chasestead is the second company in Letchworth GC to be involved in the Olympic Games, with TubeTec Concentric crafting tubes which fitted inside the torch.