Historic Olympic Torch route through Chester revealed
Flame carried through the city centre by specially selected Torchbearers
19 March 2012
The Olympic Torch relay route into Chester on 29 May and departure on 30 May has been announced today.
The historic relay begins at the Welsh border in Saltney – (map red route) – travelling through Hough Green, and across the Overleigh roundabout into Handbridge.
From Handbridge the route takes the torch over the Old Dee Bridge where it will be met by a Roman Soldier guard of honour and on into the riverside Groves.
The route from here into the city centre passes up through Grosvenor Park, on to the Amphitheatre via Vicars Lane and into St John Street to the Eastgate Clock.
A loop via St Werburgh Street and Northgate Street will then pass the Cathedral and Town Hall before the Torch heads towards the Racecourse celebration destination via Watergate Street.
The relay is scheduled to start at 17:45 in Saltney and reach the racecourse destination just over an hour later at 18:50. Throughout the relay the flame will be carried by the specially selected Torchbearers covering approximately 300m each and communities along the route are expected to show their support.
The Torchbearers confirmed to carry the Flame in Chester today include those that were successful through the public nomination processes run by LOCOG and the Presenting Partners, Coca Cola, Lloyds TSB and Samsung.
LOCOG has endeavoured to slot all community Torchbearers within an hour of their nomination address so family and friends can cheer them on. Each Torchbearer will wear a white and gold uniform which has been designed by Adidas.
On arrival at the Racecourse, which is the location for the spectacular Olympic Torch celebration event, the flame will ignite a cauldron on the stage marking its’ historic arrival in Chester.
The event will include the Olympic flame show with local performances and the unique ‘Moment When’ dance spectacular involving a cast of hundreds.
Information about who will be performing that evening will be available in the next few weeks.
Councillor Stuart Parker, Executive Member for Culture and Recreation, said: “Plans are being made to make the torch celebration a memorable occasion for everyone in the Borough.
“We will be the first venue in the north west to welcome the torch and I am sure it will be given a fantastic Cheshire West welcome as people line the route or take part in the Chester Racecourse festivities.
“All the torch bearers are playing their part in creating this historic event which will be witnessed by thousands of people.
“This is something for everyone to get behind the ideal of the Olympic Games and celebrate the joining together of our communities.”
Sebastian Coe, Chair of LOCOG said: “Today we bring the Olympic Torch Relay to life. The Flame symbolises the Olympic spirit and its journey around the UK will bring the excitement of the Games to our streets.
“Now the people know the route the Olympic Flame will be carried along and the Torchbearers for their community, they can start planning how they might celebrate and make it Cheshire West and Chester’s moment to shine.”
The torch remains in the city overnight and there is a second chance to see it as the departure relay starts early the following morning – 06:56 – from the Suspension Bridge on the river (blue route on map).
A farewell to the torch is planned to take place in the Groves with the torchbearers leaving via Souters Lane, Pepper Street, Lower Bridge Street, down to Castle Drive. The final leg will finish in the vicinity of Grosvenor Bridge/Grosvenor Road at 07:08
Local Chester City Councillor Samantha Dixon said: “This commemoration will highlight, as well as the sport, the historical and the cultural aspirations of the Olympiad – there for all to see.
“And the route of the torch – both arrival and departure – takes place through Chester, passing some of its world famous sites.
“I am honoured that our city has been chosen to host this prestigious event.”
Emma Jones, 20, from Chester has been nominated as a torch bearer by Cheshire West and Chester Council for her volunteer work and fundraising efforts with the Boughton Belles Netball Club.
The team was run by her former PE teacher which she joined in 2007 whilst attending The Bishop’s Blue Coat Church of England High School.
The club initially offered youngsters the chance to play netball and enjoy it no matter how good or bad they were and without a competitive aspect to it.
Over the years the club has gone from strength to strength and now has more than 300 members.
Being involved with the club made Emma realise she wanted to be a PE teacher and she is now undertaking a three-year degree in sports teacher training.
Although now in her second year at Leeds Metropolitan University she still takes responsibility for the four to six age groups. She is also the club’s fundraising officer, organising bag packs and Christmas presentations etc.
In May she will run the Chester half-marathon to raise funds for the club.
Emma said: “I could not believe that I was chosen to be a torch bearer and I am really looking forward to the Olympic Torch celebrations.
“It is great to be part of this history-making moment.”
Emma will carry her torch on Wednesday, 30 May.
A detailed map of the route the torch will take is available to download as a PDF Document (1.07MB).