Part of the Ilkeston Cam "Days Out" Series

Matlock - Flame In June
w/e 01 July 2012
All this week's pictures were taken with a Kodak DX6490
Torch Relay 2012

"Flaming June" used to mean it was the month of hot summer weather but more recently the addition of an exclamation mark and a derogatory tone of voice "Flaming June!" has intimated anything but fine weather. This year however a play on those words giving us "Flame In June" could only mean one thing - the Olympic Torch Relay. Day 41 of the relay took the relay into Nottingham but we didn't fancy milling around in the Old Market Square after tea and it had left the city before breakfast the following morning.

On Day 42 (Friday) the torch made the short trip down the A52 to Derby but it's route was a circuitous 100 mile trip that took in several other towns on the way. Again it didn't arrive in Derby's Darley Park to be met by a 20,000 crowd until nearly 8pm so we decided to turn the event into a day out and travelled the 18 miles up to Matlock where the relay was expected to be passing through in mid afternoon.

Schools' Olympic Parade

MatlockSchoolchildrenWe arrived in Matlock shortly before lunch when local schoolchildren were to assemble at Crown Bridge and walk into Hall Leys Park. A short sharp shower (left) resulted in a change of plan and they sheltered under the trees (right) but as the weather improved they paraded into the park carrying their banners and imitation torches in what was described as the Schools' Olympic Parade.
Around The Bandstand

Many local schools were represented and they all gathered around the bandstand in the centre of the park for a formal welcome.
That Special Shot

There were many parents and bystanders taking photos as well as myself and some of them went to extraordinary lengths to get that special shot. This gentleman was balancing on a park bench and I suppose if he was connected to one of the schools, his pupils would have no trouble in locating him among the thousands of people present.
The Welcome

From a similar position I captured this shot of some of the children around the bandstand as a local Councillor made the welcome speech and introduced the schools one by one.
Afternoon Events

Tennis CourtsMatlock Town BandAn "Olympicnic" lunch was followed by many events in the park. There was a painting project on a 100 meter long canvas where children could design and sign their work and get rather messy adding hand prints. They loved it! There was also a climbing tower, tennis taster sessions (left) and Paralympic multi-sports activities. Matlock Town Band also entertained from the bandstand (right).
Cavalcade of Vehicles

But by 2pm everyone started to line the roads through the town as they waited for the arrival of the torch which was preceded by police motorbikes and cars and the sponsor's vehicles, the two on the right above being Samsung and Coca Cola.


Lloyds TSB were another sponsor and the occupants of all the sponsor's vehicles were doing their best as they came down Steep Turnpike and into Causeway Lane to whip the crowd up into a frenzy begging them to cheer and shout.
Pip Leach

The junction of Steep Turnpike and Causeway Lane was an exchange or "kiss" point and 50 year old Philippa "Pip" Leach from Alfreton who had been nominated as an outstanding role model for youngsters, moved about among the crown letting them touch the torch as she awaited the arrival of the flame. Philippa who has completed the Everest Marathon seemed as high as the mountain itself with excitement before the flame arrived.
Arrival Of The Torch

As the clock moved around to three o'clock and right on schedule, more vehicles descended Steep Turnpike but the grey clad runners indicated that the Olympic Torch was almost here.
Kate Dewhirst

And there among the thronging crowd appeared the beaming 15 year old Kate Dewhirst from Nottingham, a member of the Nottinghamshire Boccia Club and captain of a pan disability team who plays boccia at a National Level.
The Olympic Flame

After the exchange Pip continued through the streets of Matlock holding her torch now topped by that important flame high above her head for everyone to see. Listening to television reports later, two words cropped up again and again - "exciting" and "amazing" - and whilst I wouldn't say I was excited at seeing the torch, it is pretty amazing to think that the flame has been kept alight all the way from Greece. The build up to the Olympic Games has been long but as the flame passes through each city, town or village the start of the London 2012 gets that much closer. Before you know it, it will be nothing but a memory.

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