The Olympic flame is coming to Cambridge city, in style the least. Cambridge city forms part of the London Olympic Torch Relay route leading up to the 2012 Olympics, involving 8,000 inspirational torchbearers in total, where the flame will eventually reach the London Olympic stadium for the opening ceremonies on the 27th this month. The torch arrived in Cambridge approximately 6pm today, carried west along Newmarket Road from the junction of Ditton Lane before making its final approach along Mill Road to the Cambridge city center. The journey will employ a variety and rather unusual modes of transport including horseback, steam train and river punts.
Several stage performances were lined up since 5pm on Cambridge green as part of the Cambridge “Big Weekend” on Parker’s Piece, including pieces by Britain’s Got Talent finalists Twist and Pulse, presented by Samsung and rocking concerts by London-based rock band “Young Guns” sponsored by Coca-Cola. Additional performances includes local Cambridge talent, such as the acclaimed dance troupe with their pieces “Dance Offensive Striking Together For Gold”, as well as an amazing percussion performance created as part of a Cambridgeshire Music schools project and local choirs. The area was packed, but the crowd were otherwise very well organized, polite and well behaved despite the bumper-to-bumper human traffic.
The crowd on Parker’s piece was nearly 40 thousand strong as everyone awaited for the arrival of the Olympic flame, ushered in by Olympic medalist Iwan Thomas who lit the Cambridge cauldron on stage after a countdown with the crowd. The flame came all the way from the birthplace of the ancient Olympics in Greece on 10 May and arrived in the UK at Land’s End on 19 May. A choir performance proceeded thereafter with the flame on the Cauldron eventually captured and contained in hand-held lanterns for safekeeping for the next relay league tomorrow. Thereafter, community art projects, such as the “A Field for Dreams” took center stage as post event entertainment.
The flame will leave the city via the River Cam and road tomorrow, more on the flame on the punts with an update tomorrow!
You can view more photos (gallery) of the Cambridge Olympic Torch Relay here.