OLYMPIC TORCH RELAY: Week one from Land's End to Cardiff
KINDLED by the rays of the sun in Ancient Olympia, the Olympic torch finally arrives in the UK after a week-long journey around the home of the Games in Greece. Over the next ten weeks more than 8,000 will carry the torch - from the young to the old, the well-known to the deserving.
GRAND ARRIVAL: British Airways will bring the flame to the UK, in a specially chartered golden plane - dubbed The Firefly (Getty Images via Locog)
MAY 19TH - DAY ONE: LAND’S END – PLYMOUTH
After arriving on a golden plane at RNAS Culdrose on Friday, the flame will start it's journey from Land's End at 7am before weaving its way up the coast towards Plymouth, where an evening celebration - no tickets needed - will be headlined by several local musical, acrobatic, and dance acts.
Three-time Olympic gold medalist Ben Ainslie will take the torch first at the Land's End's famous signpost.
Ainslie was the first athlete selected for Team GB last year and is favourite to retain his Finn title in Weymouth, venue for the Olympic regatta.
The torch will also pass through the hands of several others closely associated with the Games.
DID YOU KNOW? * 8,000 torchbearers * 8,000 miles is the estimated total distance the Olympic flame will travel * 300 metres is the average distance each torchbearer will carry the Olympic flame
DID YOU KNOW?
* 8,000 torchbearers
* 8,000 miles is the estimated total distance the Olympic flame will travel
* 300 metres is the average distance each torchbearer will carry the Olympic flame
Torchbearer Barry Davies, 74, will be working on his 19th Olympic Games as a television commentator, taking the mic at the Riverbank Arena where Team GB will go for hockey gold.
He is famous for his commentary - 'Where, oh, where were the Germans? And frankly, who cares?' at the 1988 Olympics, where Britain's men hockey team beat West Germany 3-1.
Decorated war veteran George Phillips, 87, carried the torch in the build-up to the last London Games in 1948.
Selected at the time because he was Devon's reigning 1,500 metres champion, he carried the flame for three miles - this time around it will be nearer 300 metres.
"The torch got heavy after a mile or so," he recalled. "It meant I had to change hands. I'd been warned to do this above my head - or my hair would be severely singed."
MAY 20TH - DAY TWO: PLYMOUTH – EXETER
The flame will leave Plymouth just before 8am and travel up along Lyme Bay on it’s way to Exeter. Once there, an evening event will be held featuring family-led celebrations and folk music performances.
Underlining Locog chairman Lord Coe's pledge to make youth part of the relay - four 12-year olds, selected because of the impact they've made in their community through sport and charity work, are among the torchbearers.
Elle-Louise Ruth has participated in local, regional, and national dance competitions and has also choreographed dances for her PE class in school.
Grace Jordan has already started competing in triathlons and is a member of the Plymstock Road Runners, training seven days a week.
Henry De Trogoff is a young sports enthusiast who trains regularly in rugby, football, sailing, tennis, skiing and swimming.
Kieran Dyer was nominated by his school for demonstrating the Olympic values of determination and excellence and is said to be a great role model for all his peers.
Garnet Mackinder, 21, hopes that carrying the torch is not her only involvement in the Olympics.
She has played rugby for England Sevens, as well as the England U-20 team, and hopes that she can compete in the 2016 Olympics when the sport makes its debut.
KEY TIMINGS - 07:50 - Plymouth Life Centre, 14:00 - Torre Abbey
MAY 21ST - DAY THREE: EXETER – TAUNTON
The torch will spend day three of its journey travelling along the coast of the Bristol Channel and the edge of the Bridgewater Bay, before stopping at the home of Somerset cricket in Taunton.
From the almost 90 torchbearers who will carry the flame, are three men, young and old, who have conquered some of life’s toughest challenges and continue to use their athletic abilities to positively impact their communities.
Daniel Weston, 19, finished in second place in two national Special Olympic cycling races this year and, when he was only 12, raised £2,000 in a sponsored swim to aid those affected by tsunamis in Sri Lanka.
Nominated by his wife, Colin Rowland, 53, has struggled with diabetes for 45 years, including a loss of eyesight for two years in his mid-20s. Rowland has run five London Marathons for charity and recently has been accepted to climb Mount Kilimanjaro.
LANDMARK: The torch relay will pass Dunster Castle, a National Trust property, in Dunster, Somerset just before 5pm
Arthur Gilbert, 91, lost both his son and his wife to cancer and has raised thousands of pounds for cancer charities and research since running his first triathlon in 1989.
Awarded the MBE for his charity work, he completed his last triathlon in June 2011 in just under three hours, despite appalling conditions of wind and rain. In contrast, a few hundred metres with the torch should be easy.
KEY TIMINGS - 16:45 - Dunster Castle
STAR NAME: Kate Allenby, left, who won Olympic bronze in 2000, is among the torchbearers on day four of the relay
MAY 22ND - DAY FOUR: TAUNTON – BRISTOL
Leaving Taunton shortly after first light, the flame will travel over 100 miles to an evening celebration on Bristol harbour.
The day's torchbearers include several athletes who either have previously been involved with the Olympics and Paralympics or who hope to make their names in the future.
Volleyball player Andy Townsend, 39, participated in the 1992 Paralympics in Barcelona while Kate Allenby was a bronze medallist in modern pentathlon at the 2000 Olympics in Sydney.
Jamie Barrow, 20, and Jess Hopton, 15, both hope to make their Olympic debuts in the coming years – Barrow in the Winter Games as a snowboarder, and Hopton in badminton.
Both are part of the Lloyds TSB Local Heroes scheme, which helps some of the most talented emerging athletes in the UK during one of the toughest stages of their sporting careers.
KEY TIMINGS - 06:17 - Electric Powered Community Boat , 10:55 - Wells Cathedral, 18:58 - 'Aiming High' power boat
FAMOUS FACE: Cheltenham resident Zara Phillips pictured with the Olympic torch last year. She's not listed as a torchbearer but could she make a surprise appearance (Samsung)
MAY 23RD - DAY FIVE: BRISTOL – CHELTENHAM
The Olympic torch will make its way from Bristol, through Swindon and Stroud, before making a stop in Cheltenham for an evening celebration at the town's famous racecourse, home of the annual National Hunt Festival.
There is unconfirmed speculation that a famous local and royal horsewoman - former world eventing champion and Queen's granddaughter Zara Phillips - may be a surprise torchbearer.
The flame will leave Bristol just before 6am and will arrive over 13 hours later.
Andy Hart, who competed over 800m at the 2000 Games, is among the athlete torchbearers but there has been controversy locally that Cheltenham's Eddie 'The Eagle' Edwards has been excluded.
DID YOU KNOW? Sir Steve Redgrave is still the bookmakers' odds-on favourite to light the Olympic cauldron. Second favourite is four-minute mile legend Sir Roger Bannister.
DID YOU KNOW?
Sir Steve Redgrave is still the bookmakers' odds-on favourite to light the Olympic cauldron. Second favourite is four-minute mile legend Sir Roger Bannister.
Edwards famously finished last in the ski jumping at the 1988 Winter Olympics in Calgary and carried the torch when the Games returned to Canada two years ago.
"The Canadian Olympic authority invited me to be a torchbearer for the Vancouver Winter Olympics and that was wonderful, I loved taking part," said Edwards.
"I thought I might be able to do the same for London, but apparently not. I'm slightly surprised but there are lots of other deserving people out there who want to carry the torch."
Other torchbearers include: Mark Chard, 44, who was born with cerebral palsy and started swimming aged 13, winning silver medal at the 1984 Paralympics.
And Jane Holderness Roddam, 64, who was part of the team that won the team gold medal in equestrian at the 1968 Olympics in Mexico.
KEY TIMINGS - 07:50 - Clifton Suspension Bridge, 18:39 - Cheltenham Racecourse
MAY 24TH - DAY SIX: GLOUCESTER – WORCESTER
Worcester's famous County Ground, regularly voted one of the UK's most idyllic cricket venues, will stage an evening celebration after the torch departs from Gloucester and makes its way up the heart of England.
Among the 100 plus torchbearers will be three individuals who have represented Great Britain in either the Paralympic Games or the Transplant Games.
DID YOU KNOW?
The torch is a reminder of the ancient Olympics, when a flame burned throughout the Games. The tradition was revived in 1936 for the Olympics in Berlin.
Andrew Evans-Fisher, 14, experienced kidney failure when he was born but after several operations he has been able to enjoy a life filled with sports.
Evans-Fisher won a gold medal in the Great Britain Transplant Games and was selected to compete in the recent World Transplant Games, where he won a gold medal in the 100m.
Fellow torchbearers George Brunt, 28, won skiing silver at the Winter Special Olympics and Emma Patrick, 45, is a full-time but still volunteer coach of Great Britain's Paralympic swimming team, guiding star charges Nyree Lewis and husband Sascha Kindred to eight golds in the last three Games.
KEY TIMINGS - 08:25 - Gloucester Cathedral, 16:05 - Severn Valley Railway Steam Train, 16:08 - Elephants, West Midlands Safari Park
STAR TURN: Emeli Sandé will headline a celebration event in Cardiff at the conclusion of the torch relay's seventh day - in which the flame travels from England to Wales
MAY 25TH - DAY SEVEN: WORCESTER - CARDIFF
After one week on the road, the torch has covered just 10 percent of its stops and today it temporarily leaves England for Wales, with a ticketed evening celebration - featuring chart-topping artist Emeli Sandé - taking place at Cooper’s Field.
Those helping to carry the torch from Worcester to Cardiff include one man who has won a gold medal in the Paralympic Games, along with several who hope to make their mark in the future.
John Harris, 66, competed in the 1984 Paralympic Games, winning the discus, and continues to inspire disabled kids by speaking at schools all over Wales. He read the athletes' oath at the opening ceremony of the 1984 Games, which were staged in Stoke Mandeville.
Nadine Struijk, 25, was once a member of the Dutch national synchronised swimming until it was disbanded. She now coaches the junior national team and dreams of preparing her swimmers for the 2028 Olympics - which she hopes will be staged in Holland.
Ellie Coster, 16, Rob Westwood, 16, and Ruby Miller, 19, are all Olympic hopefuls in cycling and hope that carrying the torch inspires their future involvement in Rio or beyond.
KEY TIMINGS - 18:49 - Cardiff Castle, 18:50 - Millennium Stadium
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