VOLUNTEERS are needed to help assist the Olympic Torch Relay’s journey through Dorset.

Inspirational torchbearers will be carrying the Olympic flame through the county from July 12 to 14 and local stewards are needed to assist the unique spectacle at communities along the way.

Deputy manager of Volunteer Centre Dorset, Craig Womble is urging people with ‘a couple of hours to spare’ to support their local torchbearers and to ‘be part of this special team’.

He said: “We always knew that this was going to be hugely exciting year for Dorset as the world, as well as many local people, anticipate a whole host of fantastic events.

“The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee celebrations brought the nation together and we would like to maintain this enthusiasm and community spirit in order to support organisations involved with 2012 events.

“We are recruiting stewards for the Olympic Torch Relay and calling for individuals, groups, clubs and local organisations to get involved.”

Numerous short-term volunteering opportunities are also available for the 80-plus events happening as part of the Maritime Mix Cultural Olympiad.

Mr Womble said: “There is also a fantastic opportunity to get up close and personal to the many art and cultural events in and around Dorset.

“These volunteer roles are unique, often offering chances never previously provided in the region.”

Roles include stewards, customer handling, actors and role play, face painters, motivators, art assistants, box office support, dance leaders, first aiders and multi-media volunteers. Mr Womble added: “For a small commitment it’s great fun, very good socially and provides a real sense of purpose.”

Volunteer Centre Dorset, Weymouth Community Volunteers, and Island Community Action, Bournemouth and Poole Volunteer Centres, have been involved in local 2012 preparations for the last four years.

This has included training and preparations for the Weymouth and Portland Ambassadors. Call Volunteer Centre Dorset on 01305 269214.