Milborne St Andrew

HUNDREDS of people held their umbrellas aloft as they cheered two torchbearers through Milborne St Andrew.

Former Lytchett school head boy Ben Hanger, was nominated for his charity work, which included walking the Great Wall of China for Great Ormond Street Hospital.

The 19-year-old visited the village school and Wednesday club for retired people ahead of the event, to make it ‘something for everyone’.

Lytchett head of sixth form Sue Garner, who nominated him, said: “I feel so proud and I’m retiring next Friday so this is the icing on the cake.”

Ben shared the torch ‘kiss’ with Dorchester’s Sandra Hood, a diabetes dietician, nominated for her charity and community work.

She described the experience as ‘fabulous’ and added: “I felt quite emotional really.”

Tom Sullivan, 13, of Wareham was ‘excited’ to attend with his Lytchett classmates.

Nine-year-old Molly Rea was among 44 pupils from Cheselbourne Village School who teamed up with Milborne St Andrew school for the event.

She said: “The torch was really pretty and the person holding it waved at me.”

Resident James Gamble, 23 said: “It’s great to witness a once in a lifetime event.”


The whole community in Puddletown roared their encouragement to the torchbearers as the rain fell.

From school children at Puddletown First School to the elderly, everyone turned out to celebrate the ‘once in a lifetime’ opportunity to welcome the torch to their small patch of Dorset.

Torchbearer Stacey Herring, aged 17, from Bournemouth, who has Asperger’s Syndrome and is a sailing instructor said she was nervous before the event, but she need not have worried as she set a good pace and waved to friends waiting at The Blue Vinny Inn.

Vicky Shaw from Puddletown brought her four-year-old daughter Jessica to watch the torch.

She said: “It’s really exciting for it to come through the village.”

Heather Bull, from Puddletown, who came down to watch the relay with friends, said that come rain or shine she would be getting into the Olympic spirit.

She said: “It’s good to show your support for the team. They will be doing what they do come rain or shine so we should show our support.”

Pannee Redway got into the patriotic spirit with a wig, Union Jack tights and flags.

She said: “I’m so excited.”

The torch kiss took place right in front of the assembled school children and the torch passed to Marion Marchant, 52, from Swanage, who was nominated for her volunteer work at St Marks Church of England First School.

She carried the torch through the rest of the village.

Puddletown First School pupil Khalid Miah summed up the day that despite the rain it was ‘epic’.

Izzy Faulkner said: “It was fantastic, amazing, brilliant.”

Kingston Maurward

EXCITED schoolchildren lined roads within the grounds of Kingston Maurward College to catch a glimpse of the Olympic flame.

Youngsters from the Dorchester college’s feeder schools waved flags and applauded and cheered the arrival of the torch.

Torchbearer Nathan Blackie, 14, from Bournemouth, cast aside his crutches to walk 300 metres past the cheering children.

The brave youngster suffers from cerebral palsy and was determined to carry the flame unaided.

He said: “The cerebral palsy tightens the muscles in my legs.

“I had an operation and I’ve spent time a long time trying to get around.

“I was very nervous and so glad I managed to get around.”

Modern penthathlete Jamie Cooke carried the torch up to the house.

He said: “I was nominated to carry the torch by the British Olympic Association and it has just been so overwhelming. It is great to see all of the community together.”

Local dignitaries enjoyed a lunch at Kingston Maurward College after the torch’s arrival at the house.

College principal Clare Davison said: “For the students it’s a great way to celebrate sporting achievement.

“The students have been very excited about this and no-one here minds the weather, we’re a land-based college and people are used to being out in all sorts of weather.”

Author Minette Walters, who lives near Dorchester, said: “It has just been great to see all the children getting involved.”


HUNDREDS of people flocked to the streets of Dorchester to welcome the torch through the town.

There were big crowds waiting along High West Street and High East Street, with some people hanging out of buildings or climbing walls to get a better view.

Before the torch relay there was a special visitor to the town, 91-year-old Alf Barrett who was a torchbearer in 1948.

Mr Barrett, who carried the torch through Shaftesbury, said: “I’m very excited indeed to see the Olympics back in Britain again.

“It’s fantastic to see them twice in my life. I feel most privileged.”

Despite the rain there was a great turnout and a fantastic atmosphere in the county town to support their torchbearers David Desforges, Hamish Wilson and Trudy Davies.

Dozens of pupils and staff from Sunninghill Prep School gathered outside St Peter’s Church cheering and waving homemade torches.

Classmates Poppy Stuarts and Henry Jones had made their own torches and were excited about seeing the torch go past. Henry said: “It’s really fun, I can’t wait for the torch to get here.”

Olympic ambassador Jeanette Amor said: “This is it, what being an ambassador is all about.

“It’s buzzing and everyone is here.

“It’s a great atmosphere and very exciting.”

There was a huge sense of anticipation and a great cheer from the crowd as Annie Macklin jogged into view up the hill.

The church bells were ringing out as the torch passed up High West Street and High East Street, which had both been decorated with flags from around the world.

The 16-year-old ‘kissed torches’ with her brother Ben, 12, who took off to the Top O’ Town and along Bridport Road.

He passed the flame on to Timothy Ellis who was the final runner in the town.

Dorchester Town Mayor Andy Canning and his family gathered to support the torch. He said: “We were all so excited for this day.”