Posted by: travelrat | July 18, 2012

Olympic Torch Relay: Amesbury

Call me grumpy, but I think the Olympic Games aren’t about sport any more; the main focus is on the money to be made. I happened to see a copy of the Olympic Charter back in the early 1970s, and I remember the first words were:

‘Nobody profits from the Olympic Games …’

And, I remember my friend Dennis, who was selected for the Olympic rifle shooting team in 1968, then dropped because he’d once ‘signed forms’ for a professional football club.

So, I’m not too enthusiastic about ‘The Games’ … apart from the Olympic Torch Relay, which passed through Amesbury last Wednesday. The idea was so that as many people as possible could, at least see the flame, and we did, at least, get a glimpse of it.

The one thing I regret missing, though, is the start of the following day’s run at Stonehenge, when athlete Michael Johnson posed with the torch, silhouetted against the rising sun. It’s not my photograph, and I don’t have permission to use it, but you can see it at!/photo.phpfbid=442126532487269&set=a.147912295242029.27902.100000697783430&type=1&theater



  1. I remember there being quite a bit of controversy in the mid-90s and communities were both excited and horrified to be selected for the Olympics… following the Games, the host city’s economy went in the toilet because of repairs which had to be made once the crowds departed. I went to the 2002 Winter Olympics and enjoyed myself and I was in London 7 years ago when the announcement was made. I was more impacted by the bombings the next day (across the street from my flat) but still… it’s a memory.

    • There was a guy on television, who said he believed Greece’s troubles started with them overspending on the 2004 Olympics, and failing to make proper use of the facilities afterwards. I really hope that’s not going to be the case here!

      I went to Spain in 2006, wearing a wristband to show support for the British Heart Foundation; it really amused my Spanish friends, because it was the same colour as the one worn by supporters of Madrid’s bid for the Olympics!

  2. I’m with you. It does seem money-driven these days. I like the relay of the torch though – gets the community involved. Sydney spent too much money on the Olympics too. It has taken us years to recover from it. I don’t think hosting it provides that much of a benefit. *grumble grumble grumble* 😀

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