Larne borough has been chosen to host the Olympic Flame in the run-up to the 2012 Games in London.
The flame will pass through Glynn, Larne town, Drains Bay, Ballygally, Glenarm and Carnlough on Sunday, June 3 and the Games organisers are encouraging local people to plan ahead to become involved in the UK-wide event.
After Olympic gold medallist Lord Coe confirmed Larne’s inclusion in the 8,000-mile relay route around the UK, mayor Cllr Bobby McKee said the borough was “thrilled” to be part of it.
“Residents and visitors alike will have a chance to share in the Olympic spirit and the countdown to the start of the Games,” he said.
“It will also be a chance to support those local people lucky enough to have been chosen to run with the Olympic Flame. I would like to issue an invitation to all of those within the borough to come along and be part of this historic occasion for the borough and its people,” Cllr McKee added.
Sebastian Coe, who chairs the London Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (LOCOG), said: “We are thrilled to confirm that Larne will act as host location for the Olympic Flame, extending an invitation to people in Larne Borough to welcome the Olympic Torch Relay during its journey around the UK.
“This is the UK’s moment to shine and I want to encourage people across the Borough of Larne to start planning how they can be part of this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and show their support for the inspirational Torchbearers chosen to carry the Olympic Flame as we count down to the start of the Olympic Games.”
The Olympic Flame will pass through more than 1,000 villages, towns and cities, carried by Torchbearers chosen for their inspirational achievements and contributions to their communities. The 70-day relay will start at Land’s End, Cornwall, on May 19 and conclude at the Olympic Stadium when it will be used to light the cauldron signifying the opening of the Games on July 27.
LOCOG has also launched two new public participation programmes. The Local Leaders initiative is an invitation to people to take the 2012 Games into their community and create their own celebrations next year, for the Olympic Torch Relay and other key moments during the Olympic and Paralympic Games. People are encouraged to sign up to the Local Leader programme at www.london2012.com/localleaders to receive further information on a range of themed celebration ideas focusing on the opening ceremony evening, gardening, quizzes and barbecues and be in the front row to receive free London 2012 event materials to support events.
Also launched is a Get Set for the Olympic Torch Relay education resource, available to all schools registered with Get Set, London 2012’s official education programme. The aim of the resource is to provide schools with cross-curricular resources aimed at teachers working with 3 to 16 year olds to aid learning around history of Olympic Torch Relays, the design of the London 2012 Olympic Torch Relay and the Torch itself.
A further education resource will launch next year to encourage schools to plan a welcome for the Olympic Flame and show support for the Torchbearers.