Richmond schools torch relay gets Olympic fire burning

Richmond and Twickenham Times: Game time: Thirteen schools were involved in the five hour relay Game time: Thirteen schools were involved in the five hour relay

Dozens of children from 13 schools got into the Olympic spirit by holding their own homemade torch relay.

Pupils who were specially selected because of their athletic, academic or extra-curricular achievements ran a total of 18 miles through the borough’s streets in a recreation of the real thing.

The youngsters designed, made and carried their own torches and then passed them on to the next school, holding a handover ceremony at each stage.

Pupils at Richmond Park Academy made flags for their homework ahead of the opening celebration at 9am on Monday, June 25. The young torchbearers then set off for Christ’s School.

Six dancers from Orleans Park School choreographed a performance that represented the Olympic and Paralympic values. They taught it to youngsters from St Mary’s Primary School, who also took part in the piece.

Orleans Park School runners passed a torch made by its technology department to pupils from Waldegrave School as a gift and sign of friendship.

Lauren Nuttal, PE programme leader at Hampton Academy, ran the last leg with the student torchbearers, arriving at about 1.50pm.

Pupils from the academy’s arts and performance team then held a ceremony to mark the end of the five hour relay.

The Richmond School Sport Partnership event helped unite all secondary schools in the borough and built up excitement ahead of London 2012. Crowds will line the streets to greet the real Olympic torchbearers as they pass through the borough on July 24 and 27.

Councillor Pamela Fleming, strategic cabinet member for community, business and culture at Richmond Council, said: “The enthusiasm of the youngsters involved in this Olympic relay is absolutely inspiring and they should be extremely proud of themselves.

“Richmond is an Olympic borough and our students have certainly encapsulated the spirit of the Games through this project.”

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