The Olympic torch and me – Our Young NCB members’ journey
On Tuesday (3 July) one of our Young NCB members, 15
year old Jhon Bateman, carried the Olympic torch through his local
town. Here he describes his journey . . .
“I had to be at the University in Loughborough at 8am to get
to carry the Olympic torch in Loughborough at 10:40am
We had training with the Metropolitan police telling all the
torchbearers what to expect – how to hold the torch and where
specifically to hold it (not too high – because the metal could get
quite hot!) They told us to stand in the middle of the road whilst
we were carrying the torch, and how the kiss would work (the kiss
is the point where one torch transfers the flame to the next).
They explained that we would need to hold the torches against
each other and then somebody would put a key in to light the flame
for the next torchbearer. While it was heating up they would move
back for photos, and then come back and turn off the torch you were
holding so that the next person could set off.
When I got to my starting point on the route, I was quite
nervous with all the other torch bearers – but it was really nice
to meet them. As I started carrying the torch, my nerves turned
into excitement. Seeing everyone watch me, lots of friends and
family and people from school, was so nice and their encouragement
was great. It was really busy all along the streets and there were
lots of people that I didn’t know cheering me on. I saw so many
faces, even people I haven’t seen for ages who had come down to
watch and support me.
Thinking about it now and looking back, it seems likes like
it went really quickly! The best bit was actually afterward when
people came up to me
and wanted photos with the torch. It made me feel good because
it was so great to get that experience but also to share it with
all of the other members of the public who were so happy to see the
I was allowed to keep the torch after I had carried it, as
Coca Cola had sponsored me as one of the Presenting Partners of the
Olympic Torch Relay. I am using my torch so that friends and family
can take photos with it and I would like to use it for charity work
to raise money, if I can.
In August, I’ll be given a stand so I can put it in the living
room for people to see!
“It’s still sinking in that I actually carried the torch and I
have been part of history...
People were still trying to take any photos when I went back to
the car – I felt like a film star.”
Young NCB would like to say a huge.... WELL
DONE Jhon :)