HERE IT COMES: Rugby gets ready to welcome the Olympic torch

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SCORES of Rugbeians will line the streets on Monday to catch a glimpse of the Olympic Flame as it weaves its way through the borough.

It will be ferried through Rugby and Dunchurch by 13 torch bearers ranging in age from 13 to 80 in an event billed as a once-in-a-lifetime chance to see the Olympic flame.

It was lit in the Temple of Hera ruins in Athens at the beginning of May by focusing sunlight in a parabolic mirror.

The torch runners will be supported by a convoy of 16 vehicles, including an open top coach that will be passing through streets before the torch that will be filled with Rugby musicians playing live music. Students from Rugby’s Impact Dance school will be performing outside Caldecott Park while the convoy and flame pass through the town, and the dancers will also entertain VIP guests at a special breakfast held at Rugby Library, Art Gallery and Museum.

The spectacle will be screened live on the BBC red button channel.

Its journey through the borough will begin when the Olympic convoy arrives at the Cemex plant in Lawford Road at 8.20am. It will be carried down Lawford Road and arrive in Corporation Street at around 8.30am. From there it will be carried around the town hall and past the Clock Tower at 8.36am, then taken down Clifton Road, Whitehall Road, and Hillmorton Road, before being carried past the Webb Ellis statue after passing through Horton Crescent. From then it will be taken to Harris school via Dunchurch Road, and taken via convoy to Dunchurch. Spectators around Dunchurch Road are also invited to a torch breakfast at Rugby Methodist Church Centre on the gyratory at 9am. No charge will be made but donations will be accepted.

Cllr Heather Timms, Rugby Borough Council portfolio holder for culture and the economy, said: “I’m delighted the London organising committee chose to bring the torch here. The founder of the modern-day games, Pierre de Coubertin, wrote of the inspiration given him by the legendary Rugby School headmaster Mr Arnold, and his love for Rugby football led to its inclusion in the modern Olympics until after his death in 1937.

“Dunchurch is also significant in the history of our country, being the rendezvous point for the failed gunpowder plotters, and will provide a picturesque location to see the torch pass by.”

Cllr Timms added: “The visit of the torch on July 2 will be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to be involved in the Olympics, and we will be doing everything we can to encourage schools and businesses in the borough to allow their staff and pupils to come and see it.”

The 70 day Olympic Torch Relay began at Land’s End, Cornwall on the morning of May 19 and will travel around 8,000 miles around the UK.