Get involved: send your photos, videos, news & views by texting OXFORD NEWS to 80360 or email us
OLYMPIC TORCH: Programme of events unveiled
FROM native dancers to street dancers and rock bands to big bands, full details have been announced for Oxford’s massive Olympic celebration.
The Oxford Mail can today reveal the line-up of the Monday, July 9, event in South Park, part of torch relay celebrations.
The 20,000 free tickets for the Oxford City Council event were snapped up within a week by county residents.
And they are in for a treat with a programme of entertainment set to last more than six hours.
The Olympic torch is set to visit the city that day and leave from Oxford University’s Iffley Road sports complex the next morning.
City council leader Bob Price said: “It will be very memorable.
“It is the first time we have had such a wide variety of events on one occasion in the park.”
The Labour leader said: “It is a nice mix of different types of music, dance and sporting events – there is something there for all age groups.”
The gates will open at 3.30pm when visitors will be able to enjoy acts including the County Youth Big Band, the Oxford Philomusica and sport demonstrations like judo and lacrosse.
At 5pm, entertainment will kick off on a stage hosted by the London Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (LOCOG).
This will feature rock band Young Guns, Britain’s Got Talent street dance finalists Twist and Pulse and an aerial dance performance.
At 6.45pm the final Olympic torchbearer will make their way down Morrell Avenue and on to the stage to light a cauldron.
The fun will then continue on other stages and zones and include West African Kora player Jali Flily, the Ugar Purple Spider Dance Team from the Eastern Torres Strait Islands near Australia, silent comedian Fraser Hooper and folk music.
The event will close at 9.30pm with a stunning, hour-long Tree of Light performance, part of the London 2012 Cultural Olympiad.
More than 750 people will take part at the showpiece, to include singers and dancers and a throng of cyclists to help power a 16-metre LED light tree, which gradually illuminates during the performance.
Artistic director Charlie Morrissey said: “This monumental and theatrical event will take place at dusk and will be full of drama and excitement, light, colour and movements, creating an incredible human spectacle.”
Brass band director Chuck Lloyd said the performance will be the last for many members before they head off to university.
Promising a brassy rendition of Michael Bublé’s Cry Me A River, he said: “We have never played to that many people – it will be a nice, loud, rocking group.”
The Playhouse Theatre company is to put on a bath-time themed play for youngsters in a tent.
Spokesman Madeleine Woolgar said: “We are very honoured to be taking part.”
And East Oxford’s Nick Cope, set to entertain youngsters with his banjo and guitar, said: “It is great to bring everybody together.
“For Oxford, there never seems to be enough going on for everybody. For that amount of people to get together should be great fun.”
Earlier this year, the Oxford Mail revealed that under LOCOG rules local traders will have to black out logos if they are not an official Olympic sponsor.
Lord Mayor of Oxford Alan Armitage said: “I’m looking forward to it, I hope there will be a lot of people there enjoying themselves. That’s what it’s all about.”
THE Olympic Torch will tour Oxfordshire on Monday, July 9, and Tuesday, July 10.
Estimated arrival times for when it will be at significant points on its trip around the county are:
Monday, July 9
Bicester: 2.44pm London Rd; 2.52pm Market Square; 2.52pm Sheep St; 2.55pm St John’s St; 2.57pm Queen’s Ave; 3.01pm King’s End.
Kirtlington: 3.13pm Heyford Rd.
Woodstock: 3.31pm Oxford Rd; 3.37pm High St; 3.39pm Park Street; 3.40pm Blenheim Palace Approach; 3.53pm Blenheim Palace Great Court; 4.24pm Blenheim Palace; 4.29pm Bleinham Palace Road.
Kidlington: 4.38pm Banbury Rd; 4.47pm Oxford Rd;
Oxford: 5.15pm Horspath Rd; 5.15pm BMW Mini plant site entrance; 5.17pm BMW Mini plant site; 5.33pm Watlington Rd; 5.39pm Cuddeston Way; 5.47pm Blackbird Leys Rd; 5.55pm Barns Rd; 6.03pm Between Towns Rd; 6.05pm Oxford Rd; 6.11pm Cowley Rd; 6.32pm St Clement’s St; 6.37pm Morrell Ave; 6.46pm Warneford Lane; 6.46pm Celebration Stage South Park.
Tuesday, July 10
Oxford: 07.05am Iffley Road Sports Complex; 07.15am Iffley Road Sports Complex; 07.17am Oxford University Rugby Pitch path; 07.18am Oxford University Rugby rugby pitch path; 07.19am Iffley Rd; 07.28am Donnington Bridge Rd.
Abingdon: 07.41am Oxford Rd; 07.59am The Vineyard; 08.01am Stert St; 08.02am Broad St; 08.04am Bridge St.
Wallingford: 08.25am Castle St; 08.31am St Martin’s St; 08.32am St Mary’s St; 08.34am St Martin’s St; 08.37am High St; 08.39am The Street; 08.43am The Street, Crowmarsh Gifford.
Comments are closed on this article.