Sporting line-up for Merton's alternative Olympic torch relay
An all-star line-up has been assembled to take part in an alternative Olympic torch relay later this month.
Eight Merton residents have been invited to take part in the Wimbledon Guardian’s alternative relay after we revealed not one person running in Merton’s official torch relay on July 23 was actually from the borough.
The alternative relay aims to highlight Merton’s community heroes and sporting stars giving deserving residents the chance to run with an Olympic torch in their own community.
Our line-up of torchbearers includes two former Olympic champions, a 2016 Olympic hopeful and an 86-year old marathon runner who has raised thousands of pounds for charity.
Laura Brennan-Probets, a former child of courage born with spina bifida, was not expected to live into adulthood, but is now 30.
She was described as a “wonderful inspiration” by her aunt who nominated her.
Another of our torchbearers, Jessica MacLean, from Wimbledon Chase, has overcome scoliosis of the spine and a long term heart condition, to become captain of her school’s hockey team and a member of the U15 Wimbledon AFC football team.
Come and support our torchbearers at an Olympic celebration and community fair at the Hub in Mitcham on July 28 from 11.30am.
The free event will also feature live music, football, cricket, rugby and basketball coaching for children and teenagers, street dancing, Zumba, and an introduction to bowling for seniors as well as traditional games for children, a barbecue, licensed bar and giant screens to watch the Olympics.
Haydon the Womble is no longer able to take part.
The official torch will be coming through Merton on July 23 and will include people from as far away as Brazil, the USA and Milton Keynes running through the borough.
Haydon the Womble, former Olympic champion Ray Stevens and schoolgirl Jessica MacLean were told to run outside of the borough, while many other deserving residents were nominated, but not selected.