Olympic Torch relay planned in Matlock

TORCH HONOUR: Derbyshire County Council Cabinet Member for Education Councillor Mike Longden (centre) celebrates news of the Olympic Torch lunch stop at Highfields School in Matlock with headteacher Eddie Wilkes (second left), sports co-ordinator Jayne Allen (second right) and school sports ambassadors (from left) Debs Greer (18), Calum Kinsella (18), Abi Akehurst (17) and Emma Erskine (17).
TORCH HONOUR: Derbyshire County Council Cabinet Member for Education Councillor Mike Longden (centre) celebrates news of the Olympic Torch lunch stop at Highfields School in Matlock with headteacher Eddie Wilkes (second left), sports co-ordinator Jayne Allen (second right) and school sports ambassadors (from left) Debs Greer (18), Calum Kinsella (18), Abi Akehurst (17) and Emma Erskine (17).
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It’s all fun and games as preparations start for the Olympic Torch relay.

The hallowed flame will make its way through the Dales on June 29 as part of its tour through Britain, which started at Land’s End on May 19 and will end at the London Olympic Stadium for the opening ceremony on July 27.

The torch will come to Matlock from Chesterfield – arriving at the Lumsdale site of Highfields School for a private function at 1.45pm.

During this stop, it will be taken to Matlock Bath and travel on the cable cars before returning to the school, where the relay will resume at 2.50pm.

Travelling down Steep Turnpike, which will be closed to spectators, it will be taken into Crown Square along Causeway Lane.

It will then go along Bakewell Road before changing to convoy mode on its way to Darley Dale.

Leader of Derbyshire Dales District Council, Cllr Lewis Rose, said: “The key message to people living on the Dales route is to be prepared.

“Our advice is plan to arrive early and take advantage of the dozens of special events taking place in town centres and the District Council’s parks in Matlock and Bakewell.

“Derbyshire Dales District Council is proud to have been given the opportunity to coordinate the entertainment and logistics for this once–in–a–lifetime event, and we’ve been working hard with our partners, including the town councils of Ashbourne, Bakewell, Darley Dale and Matlock, Derbyshire County Council, the Peak District National Park Authority and other local groups, to make this a special day.”

As many as 2,000 school children will be expected to join in the celebrations in Matlock with activities kicking off in Hall Leys Park from 12.30pm.

At 12.15pm, children from local schools will take part in an Olympic Parade from the bridge in Crown Square to the Hall Leys Park, culminating in the raising of a schools’ flag on the Hall Leys flag pole.

There will also be a multitude of events organised by the council and a host of local partners, including dance, a design–a–flag session, a Matlock Bath Illuminations display, street games, extreme sports, tennis and bowls taster sessions, an ‘Olympicnic’ and face painting.

Seven torch bearers will be involved as the flame makes its way through Matlock.

Both in front and behind each the torch bearer will be a cavalcade of vehicles – more than 12 in number, including sponsor partners.

The council wishes to remind people that he streets of the town are likely to be incredibly busy and has asked people to respect designated viewing areas reserved for schools.

In a bid to minimise disruption and to ensure spectators get a traffic–free view of the flame, there will be rolling road closures as the torch moves through the region.

Those enthusiastic to see the torch are warned that in the first week the relay was up to an hour late.

Local people are urged to look out for more information closer to the day by visiting the district council’s web page www.derbyshiredales.gov.uk/torchrelay.

On the day itself, regular updates will be posted on Facebook at www.facebook.com/derbyshiredales and Twitter (#derbystorch) at www.twitter.com/derbyshiredales to inform people about what is happening and if the relay is running to schedule.