Britain's Olympic Torch Story

Britain's Olympic Torch Story

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Spirit of endeavour, something our country knows loads about and I


need it now. Here we go! The perfect landing for Bear Grylls and


that flame is still very much alight! Muhammed Ali says carrying


the Olympic torch was his biggest achievement, so that tells you how


much it means to carry the Olympic torch. Fantastic. Look at the


crowds. Come on! We have come to look at the torch and the weather


is absolutely gorgeous. To be honest, I don't know where I am.


I'm standing on a track in front of loads of people having the best


moment of my life. I wouldn't have missed for the world. Everybody


Tonight, we welcome the flame that may well start the biggest party


Britain's ever seen, the London 2012 Olympic Flame. The start of


the journey, limbia, Greece. Lit by the rays of the sun -- Olympia,


Greece. Lit by the rays of the sun, but the relay is involving 8,000


people. It touched down in the UK. The Olympic flames burns on British


soil at last! A transfer by Sea King helicopter, to the western-


most tip of England, Land's End. Into the safe hands of Britain's


finest sailor, three time Olympic gold medallist, Ben Ainslie. This


will build up around the country and it's a great thing, it gives


everyone a chance to feel part and build that up to the Games. It's


been incredibly emotional and I'm going to start crying now. As the


relay begins so a message goes from torchbearer to torchbearer, this is


your moment to shine. It's like a blessed moment and a surreal moment


and I can't believe it moment, all at the same time. I'm so grateful


for everyone getting up. It was unbelievable. Better than I could


ever have imagined. We know how to celebrate tradition and we do it


well, and especially here in Wootton Bassett. Leaving the West


Country, the torch is heading for Wales, heading for rare sunshine.


Carried by the famous and people simply nominated by friends and


family. Each bearer with a story to tell. The fine weather has


certainly contributed to a wonderful turnout here in Monmouth.


On day one in Wales, one of the bearers through the town of


Blaenavon is 28-year-old David. He's been blind since the age of


seven and has recently undergone a heart transplant. I wouldn't go as


far as to say I'm ready to run the London Marathon yet, but... I was a


bit nervous. Not so much a dropping the torch, but maybe burning my


head! I didn't think I would be here this year, so to be here and


be able to carry the torch has been one year to remember. Cardiff and a


leg run by Wales rugby captain, Sam Warburton, rugby Royalty. And the


Timelord himself, Doctor Who. This is for the ageless. Those of my age.


Karen Burrows of Swansea, whose daughter died aged 22 months,


nominated by her sister Tracey, whose husband died at aged 42.


Everyone person on the bus had a story and it was so emotional and


when it got to the stop I started crying. There's a photo of me going,


"I've got the torch." Obviously I'm a bit of an athlete, so I wanted to


run, but everybody was saying take your time and enjoy your moment,


milk it a bit and make the most of it. Everybody wanted to touch the


torch. Perfect strangers wanted to stroke me. I never expected to feel


the way I did on that particular That's it Peter, well done.


Brilliant. Is that the first you've run for a while? No, not at all,


cheeky sod. Chris Moyles to carry the torch in Aberystwyth. After


that, the only way is up, all the way up Snowdon. To a legend of


mountaineering. I'm quite emotional about it, because I started


climbing here in Snowdonia 60 years ago and I've been to the summit


many, many times. I actually brought in the new year at the age


of 17 here on top of Snowdon in 1952, so I think to be asked to


carry this torch here means an awful lot. Chris Bonington, the


highest man in England and Wales. My teacher is carrying the torch.


The last torchbearer on the last day in Wales was one very


skpepbtant Hayley Lynch from her -- expectant Hayley Lynch. There were


thousands of people and I was really hot. When they give me my


date and I was due on 27th I thought I was pushing it, but he'll


stay put. I've been talking to him and said a little prayer. As we


walked along my hands were shaking, but I powered through. I kept


smiling. It was very hard to smile all that way. Half way, there was a


hill and I looked at it and I thought I've got to go up the hill


and they said, "You haven't finished yet. There's still a way


to go." But I made it. She did it. Like Hayley, we'll hang on a little


longer. Back into England and in Broseley near Telford the story of


Ricky Ferguson, corporal Ricky furg son from the 4th Battalion The


Rifles, blown up in Afghanistan -- Ferguson, from the 4th Battalion


The Rifles, blown up in Afghanistan. Ricky as he was. Five times he went


to help wounded comrades before he was caught in the blast that cost


him both his legs and left eye and fingers on both hands. You can sit


and be depressed or get up and get your legs on and live your life the


way you did before and that's what I do. I can't wait to get to the


top! If I stop I won't carry on. He's an absolute amazing guy and


today he's going to walk 100 metres up that hill with no legs. What he


did over in Afghanistan, you know, went in five times to help people


out, to do all that, honestly I can't tell you how much we love


that bloke. I've done enough walking. We're proud of you, well


done. Did you enjoy it, mate? I got to the top of the hill I was


knackered. I've done loads of interviews. I thought I'd never get


to the pub. Day 13 and having a laugh with the appliance of science.


This is John bishop and this is the very big Lovell tep exol at Jodrell


Bank in chess -- telescope at Jodrell Bank in Cheshire. I don't


like heights. The whole experience of holding it is fantastic. It's


more emotional than you imagine and then obviously getting on to the


top and getting soaking wet, so I've got pneumonia and I'm going to


sue the Olympic committee! everybody from Liverpool got wet.


Here's the torch on the ferry across the Mersey. A crowd of


20,000 at the Pier Head to greet the torch carried by Craig Lundberg,


blinded by serving in Iraq. does it feel? It feels great and


amazing and we have got one of the most beautiful docks in the world


and the picture that the photographers must be taking must


look amazing. Meet Thora Beddard, aged 94 and a right bundle of


energy. I learnt to swim at 40 and at 73 I went abseiling and then I


took my GCSE at Stockport College when I was 83 and I got it.


Carrying the torch through the crowd was just something - it's in


describable. I knew I had to wave and carry the torch and smile. And


carry on walking. I walked slow you, I can assure you and by the time I


turned I was grateful when I saw the other girl waiting for me. The


secret of growing old is the fact that you've got to keep active,


physically, mentally and socially. You've got to be among people.


wonders of the Isle of Man. You can take a tour using leg power, but


here the only way to get around is by bike. The first time the Olympic


torch has been on the TT course on a race day and it's awesome. I feel


pleased with myself because I got to carry the Olympic torch and this


is the day I'll never forget. the Isle of Man, the short hop


across the water to Northern Ireland. A short hop that is for


the giants would laid down the stepping stones on the North Antrim


coast. And from the giants cause way to a shy, big man from Belfast.


I'm Gerrard McCartan and my wife jom nated me. I -- nominated me to


carry the torch. We lost our son Danny to suicide seven years ago


and when I was campaigning for a suicide prevention strategy I was


doing it for Danny, but Danny was with me. Anybody who is feeling in


a dark area, look at the Olympic torch and think there's light at


the end of the tunnel and all you When she was running up the avenue


and up the steps, it was just so emotional. Unreal with the backdrop


of Stormont in the background. Oh god. The experience of a lifetime.


You get to meet everybody else who's running with the torch today.


And we're all sitting in the bus like Elvis impersonators ready to


go out in our white suits and go, "Uh-huh-huh!" Mary Peters,


pentathlon gold medalist 40 years ago. And from yesterday to a star


of tomorrow. I'm Francie Stokes. I'm 14. I'm current Irish boxing


champion for my weight and age. I'm carrying the Olympic torch in the


relay in Magheramason. I'm a member of the travelling community and no-


one thought I could do it because of who I am. I want to prove them


all wrong and carry the Olympic torch. I want to be in the 2016


Olympics to box, cos everything is This moment carried huge symbolism.


Two boxers, Wayne McCullough, a Protestant and Michael Carruth, a


Catholic, together on the border. The flame's onward journey to the


Republic, a gesture of harmony between the countries and the wider


Olympic family. To be part of Irish history is just fantastic. Just to


cross the border is a big, big thing. A big, big step, believe me.


It's a thing you're never going to get in a lifetime. It's great that


myself and Wayne have done it here at the border. A great moment in my


life. Down to Dublin, through the fair city, not with Molly Malone,


but Jedward. Former Olympian Sonya O'Sullivan completes the journey in


the Republic of Ireland. And from Dublin, back to Belfast. And on Day


20 into Scotland through Stranraer See what I mean? They should have


No higher point than the top of Ben Nevis. The sun is out in Scotland.


Couldn't ask for a better day. Yeah, awesome. And as high as you can go


on mainland Britain. Even higher, to the island of Hoy in Orkney. And


here to meet 24-year old Sean There you go, my darling. He's


given folk a lot of pleasure with hugs and smiles and the rest of it.


It's just a really friendly place. Because of all the different


experiences he's had as an ambassador to people with Down's


Syndrome to show not just what folk with Down's Syndrome can do and


achieve. Congratulations. It's just another thing that adds to his view


of life. Really really proud that he did it on his own. We sometimes


have to give him some back up with general life. But when you saw him


running there with the torch smiling and waving he was just the


From Orkney up to the Shetlands and back to mainland Scotland. The


journey south to Aberdeen. A long drive. Well, a three-wood for Colin


Montgomery. It was nice to see the last lady there, Evelyn, who's


fostered over 100 children here in this area and those are the sort of


people who deserve to carry the torch. South to West Sands Beach in


Saint Andrews, the home of golf. But today, an Olympic town. A re-


enactment of the scene shot here for the Oscar-winning film Chariots


of Fire. The story of runners Harold Abrahams and Eric Liddell at


Today is also about another runner, Andrew Coogan, nominated by his


nephew, the wonder cyclist, Sir Chris Hoy. Great Uncle Andy's


promising athletics career was cut short by the Second World War. He


spent four years in a Japanese prisoner of war camp. I always


hoped and prayed to God every day that the war wouldn't last, you


know. So I could come back to my sport, you know. Chris Hoy was


interested in me doing it because he knew what I'd done in the past.


He knew all about me, you know. He beat me one day in a race. I really


didn't like him for it. Folk began to take an interest. I was


surprised people were interested in me carrying it. They kept asking me


in the golf club. I forgot all about it. It was very emotional to


see. He's 95 years of age. To see how many people in the community


came out to support him, it was phenomenal. I don't want to let


anybody down. Manage to do it, The end of Day 26 and the last leg


in Edinburgh. A little embrace for Lesley Forrest. She's a little


piece of Scottish history. torch leaves Scotland and is


carried over Hadrian's Wall into England. Towards the home of the


Good afternoon and welcome to the BBC News at One. The Prime Minister


has led tributes to PC David Rathband, the policeman who was


shot and blinded by the gunman Raoul Moat almost two years ago. He


was found dead at his home in David had been going to carry the


torch through Whitburn. His place is taken by his 14-year old


daughter, Mia. I was really, really nervous and was thinking in my head,


I really don't want to do this. But I knew I had to do it because


obviously it was for my dad. It was only a short time before I started


running that I realised I wanted to do it blindfolded. No-one knew I


was going to put the blindfold on. I knew it would make my dad even


prouder if I did it blindfolded because obviously he had to go


When I was running, I was thinking of my dad the whole way and how


proud I would make him and stuff. The crowd were really, really


supportive. I didn't want it to end. It went really fast. If I am down


or something, I'll remember that day and I'll remember that I did do


If you are going to stop when carrying the torch, it's got to be


for a very good reason. A 25-year old from Redcar thinks he has one.


NEWSREADER: Already a moment never to be forgotten. David State then


As soon as I found out I was going to be a torch bearer I wanted to


make this day special so I started gauging whether or not she'd be


interested. I'm still sort of gobsmacked at how he managed to do


it. How sneaky he was. How he managed to surprise me so well.


NEWSREADER: David waited for a yes, then took back the torch and jogged


off down the road. I don't see how the torch could not


feature in the wedding. We could put a little pillow on top of it


and carry the rings round. You're going to have to show me that you


Dunkirk spirit. Doesn't bother us. We've done that, been there, worn


the t-shirt. It's only a bit of water, isn't it?


# Bring me sunshine. # In your smile.


# Bring me laughter. # All the while.


# In this world where we live there should be more happiness.


# So much joy you can give to each new bright tomorrow.


# Make me happy. # Through the years. A bit soggy


but totally worth it. # Never bring me any tears.


# Let your arms be as warm as the sun from up above.


# Bring me fun. # Bring me sunshine.


# Bring me love In Doncaster, the torch is about to


be handed to Ben Parkinson, who joined the parachute regiment at


the age of 17. Six years ago in Afghanistan he was caught in the


blast of an anti-tank mine, lost both his legs and suffered a


serious brain injury. Come on then, Good lad. Pride doesn't begin to


cover this. Scared. Incredibly proud. Incredibly grateful to the


people who will be there today who made this possible. Everybody in


Doncaster knows who Ben is. Everybody wants to come up and give


him a hug. There will be no prouder Ben Parkinson did a lot for the


regiment. All the guys have come down to support him. He means a lot


to the regiment. # Walk on, walk on.


# With hope in your heart. Well done, Ben. I'm so proud of you.


Well done, Ben. Well done, mate. I don't there are words to describe


it. Incredible. So amazing. I know what the Queen feels like now.


Fantastic. It was absolutely amazing. Absolutely superb.


Unbelievable for me, really. just captured the hearts of


everybody. It was very emotional. It was just incredible. It was so


surreal. Amazing feeling. Absolutely wonderful. Marvellous,


absolutely marvellous. I'm a bit out of breath. I've got to get up


It was just the most insane thing I've ever done. You just think, I'm


not really anybody and people are stood there cheering me on. I just


You're the only person in the world to be carrying the torch at that


time. I don't think I can carry the My cheeks hurt so much now. I've


been smiling all the way so it's great. Nerves took over. Once I


started to run it went, and I The flame to me is a sign of light.


A sign that one can aspire. One can burn. One can go ahead and do what


This is what really makes an Olympics special, people getting


behind it. I felt like I was in A little bit emotional. I'm trying


to hold it together and be grown up. It's just extraordinary. She shook


my hand. It was soaking wet and Prince Philip said, "You are wet,


aren't you?" And I said, "I'm soaked." Amazing. Amazing. Amazing.


Amazing. Amazing. Just mind blowing. Fantastic. Fantastic. Oh, it's


fantastic. What was it like? loved it. It was the time of my


In his wake its magic the length and breadth other country and now


it's a time or the capital to share the experience. Gill and explain


will tour every borough in London. And so to the last stage of the


torch relay. The last of the 8,000 runners. The last few of the 8,000


miles. The last few days counting down to the start of the Olympic


Games of 2012. This is the host city. The hub of the sporting


But if the torch relay has shown one thing it is that the spirit of


the Olympics stretches beyond the capital to every corner of the land.


And further still, over boundaries and frontiers. Very emotional,


fantastic. The Olympics are going to be spectacular. Through rain and


more rain, the message was not forgotten. This is your moment to


shine. There is only 8,000 of us. When I'm old and grey, it will be


special for me. I don't know whether to cry or laugh.


everyone did shine. Including those not yet there to see the passing of


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