Local Leaders Get Set to Celebrate the London 2012 Games in Communities Across the UK

(PRWEB) April 03, 2012

The London Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games today launched an initiative to help individuals within communities play an active role in bringing their friends, family and community members together to celebrate the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games this summer.

London 2012 provides Local Leaders with ideas and tools to bring their friends, family and communities together to help make the most of the Games by creating celebrations for their village, town or City around the Olympic and Parlaympic Torch Relays, the 12-week UK-wide London 2012 Festival, or the Olympic and Paralympic sports action.

People can sign up to be a Local Leader at http://www.london2012.com/localleaders and can start to play an active part in preparing their community for international attention when the Olympic Torch arrives in the UK.

Garden for the Games provides Local Leaders with hints and tips from gardening experts, including Blue Peter Gardener Chris Collins and Local Leader & gardening expert Philip Turvill, on how to plant seeds that will turn window boxes down your street red, white and blue, or to grow gold by planting marigolds along the Olympic Torch route.

Once the Olympic Torch Flame arrives in the UK on 18 May, Local Leaders are provided with ideas and tools to help bring the community together to welcome the Flame to their villages, towns and cities. Communities can celebrate their local heroes by lining the streets and showing what makes their local area special for the 70-day UK-wide Relay.

On 27 July, the Opening Ceremony of the London 2012 Olympic Games will be watched by over a billion people around the world, and Local Leaders will be given invitation cards, recipe tips, party sheets and more, to help them theme their venue for the screening of the event whether it is in a village hall or living room.

The 4 August is Super Saturday – the day when the most medals are awarded during the Olympic Games. Local Leaders will have access to recipe ideas to help host barbeques and a day of activity in their homes, gardens and community centres.

For the Paralympic Torch Relay, Local Leaders can help celebrate the national flame lightings in England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales by lighting up every corner of the UK with a lantern. Local Leaders will be able to access hints and tips on how to take part in a lantern procession and decorate lanterns with good luck messages for their local Paralympic athlete.

Finally, for the last day of the Paralympic Games on 9 September, Local Leaders will be provided with ideas to bring together friends, family and neighbours for a Sunday get-together to see out an unforgettable summer in style.

By signing up at http://www.london2012.com/localleaders, Local Leaders will get access to London 2012 branding, posters and toolkits. Whether the Local Leader invites three friends or their whole community, London 2012 will provide them with the tools to make their celebration one to remember and create opportunities for people across the UK to join in. They will also be able to put their celebration events on the London 2012 Join In listings website, giving local community celebrations exposure on what will be one of the most visited websites in the world this year.

Seb Coe, LOCOG Chair, said: Local Leaders are brilliant organisers in every community around the country and play an active role in celebrating national events at a local level. Through this programme, Local Leaders will help provide opportunities for everyone around the UK to join in with the London 2012 Games.

LOCOG has worked with community groups across the UK, including the Scouts, Girl Guides, NHS, YMCA, Rotary International, Garden Organic, Sport England, Sport Wales, Sport Scotland, Sport Northern Ireland, SAGA, Mumsnet, Womens Institute and English Heritage, to inform people about the Local Leaders initiative. Already over 7,000 Local Leaders have signed up.

Fiona Ellison, from National Union of Students said: We are encouraging students from across the UK to sign up to be Local Leaders to help celebrate the Games. Students from Coventry students’ union are running Olympic quizzes and the University of Cumbria students’ union are working with members of their community to create artwork to line the streets during the Torch relay.

Derek Twine, Chief Executive of the Scouts said, Local Leaders is a perfect way for our Scouts to get involved in celebrating the Games all across the UK. It provides the tools to help make this a summer to remember. We’re encouraging our Scout leaders to sign up and get the Scouts lining the streets for the Olympic Torch Relay and holding Opening Night In parties.’

Philip Turvil, from Garden Organic said: ‘We’re inviting our networks of volunteer ‘Master Gardeners’ and ‘Master Composters’ to become Local Leaders for the Games. We’re engaging 1,000 of our local champions to celebrate the Games with their community by growing for gold. Some of our volunteers mentor a street’s worth of neighbours, while others transform landscapes in schools, shared gardens and housing estates. We’re excited to be part of the celebrations and will be championing getting involved with lively training sessions and local events. We also plan to have a network of summer barbecues all with home-grown London 2012 coloured veg’.

Local Leader plans are getting underway across the country. Anna Brooke from Great Malvern is getting ready for the arrival of the Olympic Torch by planting red, white and blue flowers, plus arranging for a brass band and facepainting on the day the torch comes through. Sam Meadows and Mark Beaton from Rotherham are planning a day of sport and barbeques on Super Saturday on 4 August at their boat club. Emma Marlow from Surrey is planning an Opening night-in party to bring in the Olympics in style.

Now Games organisers are putting the call out to the whole of the UK to encourage individuals who are keen to play an active role in their friendship group, street or community and celebrate the Games this summer to sign up at http://www.london2012.com/localleaders

Notes to editors:

Local Leader case studies:

Case studies of Local Leaders from across the UK already signed up are available by request.

For further information please contact the London 2012 Press Office.

London 2012 Games partners:

The Worldwide Olympic Partners who support the London 2012 Olympic Games and the National Olympic Committees around the world are Coca-Cola, Acer, Atos, Dow, GE, McDonalds, Omega, Panasonic, Procter and Gamble, Samsung and Visa.

LOCOG has seven domestic Tier One Partners – adidas, BMW, BP, British Airways, BT, EDF and Lloyds TSB. There are seven domestic Tier Two Supporters Adecco, ArcelorMittal, Cadbury, Cisco, Deloitte, Thomas Cook and UPS. There are now twenty-eight domestic Tier Three Suppliers and Providers Aggreko, Airwave, Atkins, Boston Consulting Group, CBS Outdoor, Crystal CG, Eurostar, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP, G4S, GSK, Gymnova, Heathrow Airport, Heineken UK, Holiday Inn, John Lewis, McCann Worldgroup, Mondo, NATURE VALLEY, Next, Nielsen, Populous, Rapiscan Systems, Rio Tinto, Technogym, Thames Water, Ticketmaster, Trebor and Westfield.

There is one domestic Tier One Paralympic Games-only Partner, Sainsburys and two domestic Tier Three Paralympic Games-only Suppliers, Otto Bock and Panasonic. The London 2012 Paralympic Games also acknowledges the support of the National Lottery.

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