Dorset

London 2012: Dorset torch relay to visit Hovis ad street

Gold Hill, Dorset
Image caption Gold Hill, used in a famous Hovis advert in the 1970s, is one of the streets on the torch route

The Olympic flame will visit the street used in a famous 1970s Hovis advert and the Games' sailing venue when it passes through Dorset.

The exact route of the Olympic torch relay around the UK has been announced by the Games organisers, Locog.

It enters Dorset on 12 July and will pass landmarks such as Gold Hill in Shaftesbury and the Cobb at Lyme Regis.

Overnight stops in Weymouth and Bournemouth will both be accompanied by evening beach celebration events.

Angus Campbell, chairman of the Dorset 2012 board, said the arrival of the Olympic flame would be "a truly special and historic occasion" for the county.

As well as Gold Hill - the street used in the Hovis advert - the torch will travel via Dorchester and Bridport on its way to the Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy which is hosting the Olympic sailing events.

"We are encouraging our local communities to come out and welcome the Olympic flame to Dorset, so that they can be part of this unique experience and show their support for the inspirational torch bearers that have been selected to carry it," he added.

The torch moves on to Bournemouth the next day, passing through Swanage and Poole en route.

Bournemouth Borough Council's Sue Bickler said: "It's a real once in a lifetime opportunity. We're hoping people in each neighbourhood will come out and cheer the torchbearers on."

Bournemouth's public celebration will be held on the resort's East Beach at East Cliff with other events planned for Slades Farm and Boscombe Beach.

An average of 115 torchbearers a day will carry the Olympic flame during its 8,000-mile journey around the UK before it arrives at the Olympic Stadium on 27 July.

Judge Keeping, 12, from St Aldhelm's Academy in Poole, will be carrying the torch through the town on 13 July.

Image caption Nathan Blackie was nominated by his coach at AFC Bournemouth Ability Counts

He said he was "really excited" at the prospect and added the most difficult thing had been keeping it a secret from his sisters since he found out in January.

His sports teacher Vince Donohoe said: "He's a perfect young ambassador for the school whose enthusiasm for sport is infectious to all in the academy.

Nathan Blackie, 14, who was diagnosed with cerebral palsy at nine months old, was nominated by his coach at the AFC Bournemouth Ability Counts football team.

He will carry the torch when it is in Dorchester on 12 July.

Nathan said: "At first I just didn't believe it - it's just a dream and an unbelievable opportunity for me to be part of the biggest sporting event in the world, in Britain."

The club gives more than 50 young people with physical and learning disabilities the chance to play football. Nathan also takes part in athletics, enjoying success in the shot put and javelin, and has ambitions to represent Great Britain in future Paralympics.

Coach Katy Shepherd said: "Nathan is a great attribute to the club - he's been able to overcome everything to get on with his football."

The relay finishes at the Olympic Stadium for the lighting of the cauldron at the Opening Ceremony, signifying the official start of the Games.

Locog says the torch will come within 10 miles of 95% of the population.

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