One of Cambridgeshire's oddest traditions gets under way this morning...
Preparations For Olympic Torch Relay
There are just two weeks until the Olympic Torch Relay arrives in Bournemouth and Poole.
Road signage and notices are going up around Bournemouth along the route where the Olympic flame will travel.
Anyone planning to come along and watch the Relay is advised to visit the Olympic Torch Relay pages at www.bournemouth.gov.uk/london2012 where there is the route map, travel and transport advice, and information about celebrations being held on the two days the Torch is in town.
Sue Bickler, who chairs the Olympic Task Force, said:
“The final countdown has started and excitement is mounting – it is clear thousands of people are looking forward to this once in a lifetime event.
"Our website has lots of advice for residents and businesses about the route of the Torch and travel information.
"There will be a small number of road closures but we are making every effort to minimise the impact on the town whilst still delivering a safe and enjoyable experience for everyone.
“Our advice is to try and plan your journeys now using the information available.
"There will be heavy congestion from late afternoon and we advise anyone in town who wishes to leave to go home or for an onward journey, to do so before mid afternoon where possible.
"We are also encouraging the use of public transport, cycling and walking to get around.”
The Olympic flame arrives in Bournemouth via Wallisdown on Friday 13 July at 5.45pm.
It makes its way past the University then through Ensbury Park, Winton, Charminster, Lansdowne and the town centre to finally arrive at the Beach at 7.20pm.
The following day it begins its journey again at Bournemouth Pier at 8.15am, travels via East Cliff, Boscombe and Pokesdown before leaving the borough into Christchurch at 9.15am.
The Torch will travel along most of the route in a rolling road closure so once it has passed the road should re-open.
Full road closures will be in place at Charminster Road (from Alma Road to Heron Court Road) between 5-7pm, Bath Road flyover (between the roundabout at Westover Road and the roundabout at the BIC) from 4-11pm although taxis and buses will still be allowed, and Beacon Road behind the BIC. Other roads away from the Torch Route will be unaffected although remain very busy.
Meanwhile, a number of free celebration events have been organised across Poole, which welcomes the torch just before Bournemouth, and everyone's invited.
Celebration Events will be taking place at the following times:
- Turlin Moor Torch Relay Celebration 3pm-5pm at Turlin Moor Recreation Ground
- Branksome Torch Relay Celebration 4pm-6pm at Branksome Recreation Ground
- Ashley Cross Torch Relay Celebration 3-6pm
- Poole Day Centre and United Reform Torch Relay Celebration - 11am-6pm - Visit stalls and sample food from around the world and watch the Flame pass.
- Poole Quay Torch Relay Celebration 3pm-5pm - Poole residents are invited to gather on the Quay and will be entertained by Street Entertainers.
- Seldown Park Torch Relay Celebration 4pm-6pm - Staff from Everyone Active: Poole will be holding an outdoor Zumba class which is open to everyone. Come along, get active and watch the Olympic Flame pass.
- 1st Hamworthy Scout Group Olympic Torch Community Barbecue 3pm-7pm - 1st Hamworthy Scout Group would like to invite you and your family to a special day of celebration for the Olympic Torch Relay at 1st Hamworthy Scout Hall, Hamworthy.
Events at Turlin Moor, Branksome Recreation Ground and Ashley Cross will feature a large number of sports and arts activities that residents can get involved in. Musical performances from local schools and performance groups will also feature in the events. Residents will also be able to watch the Olympic Torch processtion from these events. Events are also being held on Poole Quay and in Seldown Park.
Cllr Judy Butt, Cabinet Portfolio Holder for Public Engagement and Participation, Borough of Poole, said:
"The Torch Relay passing through Poole offers both residents and visitors a once in a lifetime opportunity to be part of the London 2012 Olympics.
I hope people will line the streets in enthusiastic and rousing support of our wonderful torchbearers. I would encourage people to go along to one of the fantastic events being held across the borough, check our website for all the details."
For more information about events taking place please visit www.boroughofpoole.com/torchrelay
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