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P minus 1 days - the Paralympics start tomorrow

Damon Rose Damon Rose | 11:32 UK time, Tuesday, 28 August 2012

Claire Lomas lights the Paralympic cauldron in Trafalgar Square

Claire Lomas lights the Paralympic cauldron in Trafalgar Square

It's the week that the London 2012 Paralympics start. Over 4,000 athletes are competing in the Games that push the limits of disabled people but the head of the Paralympics movement doesn't want to hear the D-word so I feel almost obliged not to use it over the next fortnight. Let's see how that goes.

We've been following the build up to the Games pretty avidly for the last year on our podcast and put our Paralympics special out last week, hosted by Rob Crossan.

Channel 4 have the TV rights to the Games and the BBC will be covering it on Radio 5 live. We at Ouch! will be hanging around the various venues, attending some sports, and trying to bring you the disability minutiae that builds the big picture of London's Paralympics. We are hoping to meet you, or hear your stories, if you are coming to any of the events. So follow us on Twitter and drop us a tweet.

So, where are we today, Tuesday.

Tonight, in the next stage of the complex almost medieval flame creation process, fire from the four home nations will merge at the (sacred) Stoke Mandeville hospital after having been kindled on the highest peeks in England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales with sparks produced from the striking of a ferrocerium rod. Stoke Mandeville in Buckinghamshire is where the first Parallel Olympic Games took place and it is from there that torch-bearing teams will carry it on its final journey to light the Paralympic flame in the stadium in Stratford during the opening ceremony on Wednesday night.

The torch bearers spread the news and, ceremonially, or spiritually, it feels as meaningful and British as the ancient royal beacon lighting we saw once again at the Jubilee this year.

On the way in to London this morning, I noted that Stratford station - which trumpeted that it was "the home of the Olympic park venues" loudly over its tannoys a couple of weeks ago, is making no audible mention of this second lot of Games. Maybe they will tomorrow.


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