Thursday, 23 August 2012

Cambridgeshire Competes Hosts The Paralympic Flame

Cambridgeshire Competes is an exciting new partnership between museums and sports centres across Cambridgeshire and Peterborough. In this innovative project, funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund and Cambridgeshire County Council, history and sport are brought together in an exploration of the County's connections to the Olympic and Paralympic Games.

Until the end of September, a variety of events will focus on our local sporting champions as museums and sports centres showcase fascinating and unexpected insights into the Olympic story, drawn from the County's existing collections.

Cllr Martin Curtis, Lead member for the Paralympics at Cambridgeshire County Council said: "We are eager to maintain the excitement of the Olympic Games and to champion the Paralympic values of courage, determination, inspiration and equality. Therefore we are offering the public the opportunity to see the Paralympic Flame Lantern and to get involved in activities at a number of locations."

Stuart Hobley, Development Manager for the Heritage Lottery Fund said "So many people are inspired by our achievements in sport and culture. From the stories of Fen-skating in Chatteris, to the history of Olympic technology told at the Sedgwick Museum, this Lottery funded project is using our local heritage to help everyone share in the Olympic and Paralympic celebrations."

On Friday 24 August, Dan Gordon, a Paralympian from the Athens Olympics in 2004 and Patron of the Ability PLUS Group accompanied by Rebecca Gilbertson of LIVING SPORT, and former swimming world record holder, will travel to London and collect part of the English Flame during a ceremony in Trafalgar Square. They will then bring it back to Cambridge, the first stop on its journey across Cambridgeshire & Peterborough in a miner's lantern.

Cambridgeshire Competes will host the lantern at the following locations:

  • Friday 24 August - Cambridgeshire Competes Paralympic Flame Celebration, 6.00pm - 6.45pm, Sedgwick Museum of Earth Sciences, Cambridge. Cambridgeshire Competes exhibition runs at the museum until 9th Sept. Take the opportunity to see how the raw materials and metals are used to produce the medals and Paralympic aids, such as prosthetic limbs and high tech equipment including carbon fibre cycles and rowing boats.
  • Saturday 25th August - Ely Museum Paralympic Flame Celebration, 6.00pm-8.00pm, Ely Museum.
  • Sunday 26th August 2012 - Wisbech Museum Paralympic Flame Celebration, 10.00am - 11.45am, Wisbech Museum and then Peterborough Museum Paralympic Flame Celebration, 4.00pm - 6.00pm, Peterborough Museum

Cambridgeshire Competes has also interviewed local Olympic and Paralympic athletes which can be heard at the exhibitions. Members of the public will also be able to share their memories of London 2012, from the experiences as a spectator to the emotions when watching their sporting heroes, all will be captured.

The material, shared oral history and photographs collected at special memory collecting events at sports centres and museums will be added to the heritage collections through the MLA 'People's Record' website and the Cambridgeshire County Council Archives.