Local Primary Pupils To Carry '48 & '56 Olympic Torches

Taking part in the TfL-sponsored annual Big WoW

On 21st October primary school children in Wandsworth & Merton will take part in the month long relay to carry the 1948 London and 1956 Melbourne Olympic Torches through every London borough in the lead up to the London 2012 Games- in the morning it is the turn of Wandsworth children and in the afternoon they will be handing over to children in Merton.

From today (4th October) over the next four weeks around 30,000 children as well as Olympic Gold Medallist and double World Champion rower Mark Hunter MBE and Victoria Ohuruogu, GB youth athlete from Havering, will take part in the walking event. The event is part of a month of London 2012 Games themed walking activity and forms this year’s annual Big WoW walking event for primary school children.

The TfL-sponsored annual Big WoW aims to encourage children to walk to school and to make walking part of their lifestyle from an early age.

The relay starts on Monday 3 October in Newham with 300 pupils from 10 schools taking part along the relay route. The pupils walk with the torch through the borough and then hand it to pupils in Barking & Dagenham on Tuesday 4 October. This relay from borough to borough will continue through all 33 London boroughs with the final leg ending in Greenwich on 4 November.

A competition called ‘Welcome to my Borough’ will also run throughout October as part of the Big WoW. Each participating school will encourage their pupils to enter a factual story inspired by local landmarks they encounter during their relay walk. Winning entries from the competition will be put on display in City Hall.

Ben Plowden, Director of Better Routes and Places at Transport for London (TfL), said:
"The Big WoW gives children the perfect opportunity to enjoy walking in their borough.  We hope that this in turn will encourage more children and parents to walk to school more regularly.

“We are also working hard to improve the network of signed walking routes in London and to encourage walking journeys in the Capital. We hope that by instilling the Olympic and Paralympic spirit in this mass walking relay, many school children will be inspired to get active in the build up to the Games."

October 4, 2011