Olympic Homecoming Parade

Thousands have lined the streets of Plymouth to welcome home our Olympic and Paralympic heroes.  

Hordes of homemade banners, joyous crowds and lashings of Olympic and Paralympic spirit have greeted athletes as Tom Daley and his colleagues lapped up the euphoria surrounding the London 2012 Games as Plymouth paid tribute to its young sporting stars.

An open top bus parade took athletes and their coaches from Plymouth College to the civic square outside the Guildhall. 

Most were there to catch a glimpse of bronze medallist, 18-year old, Tom Daley. 

He spoke to Heart's Michaela Richards: LISTEN HERE 

The 15-year-old swimmer Ruta Meilutyte, who won gold in the 100m women's breaststroke for her home country of Lithuania, was also among the athletes taking part in the event.

Plymouth was one of the last cities to host a homecoming, that was due to most athletes having a holiday or being based at other places around the country for their training. 

Plymouth diver Tonia Couch has just started her training routine and admitted it was hard work: LISTEN HERE

Others in the parade included divers Tonia Couch and Sarah Barrow, swimmers Antony James, Jamila Lunkuse and Jade Howard, fencer Corinna Lawrence, wheelchair basketball player Judith Hamer and Paralympic table tennis player David Wetherill. 

Daley's diving coach Andy Banks and Meilutyte's swimming coach Jon Rudd also took part in the celebration, which included a stop at the new multimillion-pound Plymouth Life Centre, where many of the city's athletes train.

Paralympic table-tennis star David Wetherill produced one of the shots of the games - it's gone viral, one youtube clip has had over 2 million hits.

He hopes that Paralympic sport will now be on a par with the Olympic games.


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