Olympic Torches of Inspiration at Bamburgh
Bamburgh will be hosting not only the London 2012 Olympic torch but will also offer a unique chance for visitors to view the UK’s biggest private collection of Olympic torches in a day of celebrations.
The 2012 Olympic Torch arrives in the Northumberland village shortly before 6pm on June 14, as part of the UK-wide torch relay taking the flame to its ultimate destination to light the flame starting the London Games. But visitors to the coastal village, known for its imposing castle, will also be able to see the Torches of Inspiration collection of 14 Olympic torches dating back to the first modern torch relay at the 1936 Berlin Games.
This will be the only chance for members of the public to see all the torches collected in one place as the UK marks this Olympic year. The torches will be guarded during the
visit by 19 servicemen and women from RAF Boulmer who have volunteered their services for the day.
North East Olympic hero and Great North Run founder, Brendan Foster, a medallist in the 1976 Montreal Olympics, will be joining in Bamburgh’s celebrations.
He said: “This really is something special for the region. The original Olympic torch relay started in Ancient Greece when messengers were sent out from Olympia to announce the dates of the Games. The tradition was revived for the 1936 Games in Berlin, using a flame lit in Olympia and transported to Germany. The torch used then is among those coming to Bamburgh. The London 2012 Olympic flame was also lit in Olympia in front of the ruined Temple of Hera, with the flames sparked by the sun’s rays reflected on a mirror.”
202 Squadron, based at RAF Boulmer, will be honouring the arrival of the London 2012 torch with a spectacular fly-past the village.
Bamburgh will be buzzing during torch day, with packed programme of events to mark this once in a lifetime spectacle. Organiser Angela Darling said: “There will be something for everyone to see and do during the whole day as the excitement mounts in the build-up to the arrival of the torch just before 6pm that evening.
“We’ve been working hard to create a special day. As well as the Torches of Inspiration and RAF Flypast, we have a ‘celebrities versus locals’ tug or war, led by Francis Watson Armstrong, of Bamburgh Castle against a team headed by rugby icon Fran Cotton and including BBC Newcastle presenter Jonathan Miles and former TV Gladiator, Jet.
“The Village Green will be the centre of the action, which also includes a school sports Olympics, with prizes presented by Brenda Foster.”
Events begin at 11am:
- Torches of Inspiration on display at St Aidan’s Church and Bamburgh Castle
- Inshore Rescue Lifeboat on display at The RNLI Grace Darling Museum 11am – 8.30pm with face painting from 1.30pm to 4.30pm
- Dog Agility at 12 noon and 4pm
- Fire brigade display from 4pm – 6pm
- School Sports from 11am and 1.30pm
- Croquet from 3pm – 6pm
- Celebrities v Locals Tug of War contests 5.00pm
- Street entertainers throughout the village from 3.30pm – 8pm
- Archery displays at The Miller’s Nick (Castle Foot close to Pavilion) from 4pm – 8pm
- Cricket A 20-20 match from 6.30pm – 9pm
- Olympic Torch Arrival – 5.58PM
- Olympic Torch Departure – 6.26PM
- Musical Recitals at The Grove 6.30pm – 8pm
- Scarecrow display winner announced at 7pm
- Quoits, dominoes, darts, hog roast and disco in The Castle Hotel from 7pm onwards
- Auction of sports memorabilia at the Victoria Hotel from 8pm onwards
All events will be on the Village Green or unless stated otherwise. More info at www.bamburgh.org.uk and you can follow the event on twitter at @bamburghtorch