Eastleigh to Kornwestheim
Page last updated at 22 September 2016 at 14:20
Mayor of Eastleigh, Cllr Des Scott, was on hand to start a 900 kilometre torch relay between the Borough of Eastleigh and its German twin town, Kornwestheim.
A group of German schoolchildren have started a 'Torch Run' at Wildern School in Hedge End, and are running 900 kilometres all the way back to Kornwestheim in Southern Germany (near Stuttgart) via Paris and Strasbourg.
The torch will then open the 'Olympic Games of the Partner Schools', an international schools Olympic-style event over three days, which will involve 350 athletes from across Europe.
This will include teams from Germany, Spain and France together with a team of 36 students from Wildern School and a team from Eastleigh's French twin town of Villeneuve-St-Georges. Prior to the start of this event, on Monday, 19 September, there was an official hand-over of the Torch Run flame from Wildern School, the previous games host, to its partner school and new event host, the Ernst Sigle Gymnasium.
This event was attended by the Mayor of Eastleigh, Cllr Des Scott, and Keith Chapman, Chairman of Hampshire County Council. Two Games Makers from the 2012 London Olympics brought with them an authentic Olympic torch from that event. The roadside was lined by Wildern School athletes, some enthusiastic younger pupils from Shamblehurst Primary school and members of the public.
The torch run will take 10 days, traversing England, France and Germany. Its appearance in Kornwestheim will coincide with the arrival of all the youngsters from the competing European schools, including, of course, Wildern School. Cllr Des Scott will be flying to Kornwestheim to meet the torch on its arrival.
He said: “I’m pleased to support this great event and wish the students well on their run. This event is a great example of bringing communities together through sporting achievement and it builds on the excellent twinning links that exist between Kornwestheim and Eastleigh.”
The games first took place in 2008, and were a great success again in 2012 when they were hosted at Wildern, coinciding with the London Olympics. 2012 was the first year that the torch run took place, with the flame being brought all the way from Kornwestheim to Hedge End.