20,000 flock to Sheffield to get a glimpse of the Olympic Torch

The Spurr family & friends
The Spurr family & friends
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More than 20,000 people poured into Sheffield city centre to see the Steel City take its place in sporting history.

A great cheer went up as 19-year-old Carys Hall, from Gleadless, carried the Olympic flame into Barker’s Pool, lighting a giant cauldron which lit up the summer sky.

People had lined every inch of the route as the flame, on the 38th day of its journey through Great Britain, was carried through Barnsley and Sheffield.

Former Olympic heroes - including Sebastian Coe and Dorothy Hyman - joined dozens of community activists, young sport stars and voluntary workers to carry the torch on its journey.

In Barker’s Pool, people waited for hours to get a glimpse of the torch.

Many took advantage of the glorious weather to bring their entire families to see the flame.

Verity Wragg, 32, from Fulwood, was in Barker’s Pool with her three young daughters, her parents, sister and partner.

“I’ve never seen the Olympic flame before and I doubt I will ever see it again, so it is really great to be here.

“It’s a fantastic atmosphere having everyone here together.”

Vicki Robinson, from Chancet Wood, Greenhill, said: “I’m here with my daughter, my three granddaughters and their friends.

“It’s a great family event. I just think it’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to be a part of this.”

Her granddaughter Evie, nine, at the event with pal Laurie, 10, and cousin Isabel, 10, said: “I’m really excited about the Olympics, especially seeing Jessica Ennis.”

Edna Brelsford, 73, of Mosborough, said: “This is a credit to Sheffield. This is a little bit of the Olympics right here on our doorsteps.”

Giles Booth, 31, of Jenkin Road, Wincobank, said: “It’s the first time in my lifetime to be able to do something like this - it’s great to be supporting Sheffield.”

Frankie Jackson, 17, from Hillsborough, said: “This is a great event. It’s a brilliant get-together for everyone and a fantastic atmosphere. It’s a great warm-up for the Olympics.”

Student Alice Hides, 16, of Gleadless, said: “It’s like a Wednesday game there are so many people! We wouldn’t have missed it for the world.”

Lorraine Livesey, 53, of Killamarsh, said: “Everybody needs something to boost them in the doom and gloom at the moment and I think this will do the trick.”

Proud Deborah Fielding was there to see daughter-in-law Samantha run with the torch.

Deborah, 51, of Slade Hooton, Rotherham, said: “We did see her and it was fantastic. It’s something we will remember for the rest of our lives.

Flag-waving Aisha Mcnellie, of Firth Park, was wearing red and white to celebrate in patriotic style.

She said: “I am from Jamaica and it’s a very similar atmosphere to carnivals over there.”

Schoolboy Simeon Janvire, 12, of Wath-upon-Dearne, said seeing the flame was ‘worth the wait’.

Council worker Alena Prentice, of Nether Edge, added: “It’s the atmosphere that is amazing. “I can’t believe how many people and types of people there are here, from babies to grandparents.”