Olympic medal winner Helen Glover returns to Penzance

Olympic gold medal winner Helen Glover has taken part in a victory parade in her Cornish home town of Penzance.

Glover, 26, and rowing partner Heather Stanning, 27, took gold in the Olympic rowing pairs final, winning Britain's first gold medal of the 2012 Games.

After a ride in a Penlee RNLI lifeboat, Glover was driven on an open-top bus from Newlyn to Penzance where she was greeted by thousands of fans.

Glover, who lives near Reading, started her sporting rise to fame in Penzance.

'So excited'

Image caption Glover shows her gold medal to fans in Penzance

Glover and Stanning, who joined forces only two years ago, also made history by becoming Britain's first ever female rowing gold medallists.

Glover herself only began competing in the sport in 2008 and two years later earned a place in Team GB.

She said in Penzance: "Oh my God, I'm so excited and the rain's stopped, so that's good.

"I've seen quite a few people. I cried last night when my family and friends were with me. I said I wasn't going to cry at all, but I did, once."

The parade ended at her former secondary school, Humphry Davy in Penzance, where she is fondly remembered as a girl who always involved herself in all sports.

Despite her heavy training schedule, Glover has kept in regular contact with the school that first witnessed her sporting skills.

A Royal Mail postbox was painted gold in Penzance in honour of her winning performance.

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