May 18 2013 Latest news:
by Stephen Moore
Friday, July 27, 2012
An estimated 180,000 spectators flooded the streets to welcome the Olympic Flame to Haringey in glorious sunshine on Wednesday.
Crowds reached 20-deep in places and people scrambled onto the roofs of bus stops and houses to catch a glimpse of the Torch Relay as it wound its way through Tottenham, Wood Green, Hornsey and Alexandra Palace.
The turnout was double the number organisers had estimated as the mercury hit 32C, but a party atmosphere prevailed as the 22 “inspirational” Torchbearers were cheered on with the Olympic Flame from start to finish.
Prince Charles and his wife Camilla - sporting an “I Love Tottenham” badge - made a surprise appearance in Tottenham to meet Torchbearer Jay Kamiraz, 33, who has been helped by The Prince’s Trust to turn his life around from a homeless teenager to successful entrepreneur.
Pop star Eliza Doolittle took the Flame up the hill towards Alexandra Palace, later tweeting about her “incredible experience”.
She handed the Flame over to Frank Adams, 68, a volunteer coach for the past 30 years at Haringey Athletics Club, where both Daley Thompson and Seb Coe trained.
He had the honour of passing the Flame to former decathlete Daley, who was met with roaring crowds as he jogged towards the stage at Alexandra Palace, where he lit the cauldron.
Former world record holder Mr Thompson said he couldn’t believe people had been coming out “rain or shine” over the last 68 days, adding: “You people have really made me proud.”
He later tweeted: “Just wanted to thank anyone out at Ally Pally today you were brill & made an old man very happy just love the way Olympics has connected folks.”
You can watch a video of the party at the Pally filmed by Haringey youth media organisation Exposure above.
As well as the Bruce Castle Park Festival and a concert at Alexandra Palace, Torch fever took hold across the borough.
TV presenter, DJ and Muswell Hill resident Lauren Laverne tweeted: “Olympic torch mania in N10. A lady just got out of the boot of a car, with a dog and ran into the park waving a flag.”
Richard Gourlay, tweeting from Hornsey, called it a “fabulous moment” as the relay zipped past.
Haringey Council leader, Cllr Claire Kober, said: “Yesterday was a memorable day for thousands of people in Haringey as the whole community came together to celebrate the Olympics. Whether at Bruce Castle, Alexandra Park or along the route everyone shared in the excitement of the Torch passing through our borough and will have many special memories to take away. It was Haringey at its best.”
Haringey was also the only London borough to provide viewing platforms for wheelchair users and the disabled.
See our HUGE gallery of pictures from the Olympic Torch Relay on our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/hornseyjournal.