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9 March 2012, 06:00
The route the Olympic Torch will take through the country next summer has been confirmed.
The 70-day journey starts at Land's End passing through places including Mount Snowdon in Wales and Loch Ness in Scotland before finishing in London.
The torch comes to the Thames Valley on 9th July, with the itinerary as follows:
Monday 9th July: Buckingham, Winslow, Whitchurch, Aylesbury, Stoke Mandeville, Aylesbury, Waddesdon, Bicester, Kirtlington, Woodstock and Bleinheim, Kidlington, Oxford.
Tuesday 10th July: Oxford, Abingdon, Wallingford, Crowmarsh Gifford, Nettlebed, Henley-on-Thames, Bisham (Bisham Abbey), Maidenhead, Slough, Windsor, Egham, Ascot, Bracknell, Reading.
Wednesday 11th July: Reading, Theale, Thatcham, Newbury, Basingstoke, Kings Worthy, Winchester, Andover.
Highlights of the Thames Valley leg of the relay include overnight stops in Oxford and Reading, a journey on a rowing boat through Henley on Thames, and an audience of 20,000 at Reading's Madejski Stadium.
Sir John Madejski, Chairman of Reading Football Club, said: "We are all extremely excited that the Olympic Torch is coming to the Madejski Stadium, here in Reading. It is so uplifting to be part of this historic occasion."
Chairman of the Reading 2012 Partnership Board, Andy Murrill said: "It's a great honour for Reading to host the Olympic Torch Relay and a fantastic opportunity for the people of the town to play their part in the London 2012 Games. I hope everyone gives the torchbearers a warm Reading welcome and enjoys the once in a lifetime experience."
In Windsor and Maidenhead, Councillor Simon Dudley, council deputy leader and cabinet lead for the 2012 Games, said he was thrilled by the news that the Royal Borough would play such a key part in the torch relay spectacle.
He said: "The council and our local MPs have campaigned to bring the torch relay to the borough and, with four local areas now involved, we will all have the opportunity of joining in the Games celebrations. Tuesday 10 July will be a chance for communities to welcome the flame, get together and share the Olympic spirit and be part of the countdown to the Games themselves – as well as showing support for the remarkable people who will be chosen as torchbearers.”
West Oxfordshire Councillor Richard Langridge said, "We are delighted to be hosting the Olympic flame and look forward to welcoming West Oxfordshire residents to join us on 9th July and share in the Olympic spirit, and in what will be a once in a lifetime celebratory event.
"Historic Woodstock is a place of special interest and Blenheim Palace is a magnificent world heritage site, and they are both wonderful examples of the rich heritage and breathtaking beauty of West Oxfordshire.”
We spoke to Ed Vaizey, the MP for Wantage and Didcot about how exciting the Torch Relay will be for his constituents.