September 23 2014 Latest news:
Freddy Mayhew, Senior reporter
Wednesday, May 14, 2014
Twelve community heroes have been chosen to carry the Commonwealth Games baton on its journey through the capital ahead of the international competition this summer.
The dozen batonbearers include 16-year-old Young Mayor of Newham, Jonathan Bennett, and Bow athletics coach Chris Zah, with the remaining 10 hailing from Hackney, Barking and Dagenham, Greenwich, Waltham Forest, Lambeth and Southwark.
Each will take turns carrying the unique baton, which arrived back in the British Isles on Sunday carried by Stratford-based Olympic bronze medal winning diver Tom Daley.
The 19-year-old joked he was glad he hadn’t dropped it as he was met with a cheering crowd on Jersey and said it was a “huge honour” and “a great thing to be a part of”.
He added: “Glasgow 2014 is a huge focus for me and feeling the enthusiasm and support of the crowds and the commitment of the young athletes I had the opportunity to meet today makes the Commonwealth Games feel very real.”
A Festival of Sport will be held at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park when the baton comes to the capital on the weekend of June 7 and 8 on its way to host nation Scotland.
Since it began its journey some seven months ago at Buckingham Palace, the baton has been all over the world, passing between 70 Commonwealth countries.
Contained inside is a special message from the Queen, which will be read out to the world when the Games begin in Glasgow on July 23.
Chris Jenkins, European regional vice-president of the Commonwealth Games Federation, said: “The journey of the baton is an amazing testimony to the shared values of the Commonwealth family.”