Campaigners and supporters cheered on the Torch Relay petition handover.

The petition calling upon Lord Coe and his Olympics organisers to bring the Olympic Torch Relay through towns along the B3400 has been passed to Sir George Young, MP in a ceremony on the Whitchurch Town Hall forecourt yesterday (Wednesday, 28 Dec 2011).

Sir George will take the petition personally to Lord Coe’s office at the Palace of Westminster on Monday, January 2nd.

Many campaigners and supporters from a wide area came out to watch the petition, whose individual sheets were wrapped up together using a large bowed ribbon, being passed to Sir George by our mayor, councillor Barry Jackman.

EXCITING TIME

Barry said, “I was honoured this morning to present the Torch Relay petition to our MP Sir George Young. It had been an exiting time watching the petition sheets come in and although the final number is still to be declared, over 2100 so far is a brilliant result.”

He continued, “It was good to work with our village neighbours on the proposed route who took part in the campaign and a special thanks to Overton for a magnificent effort. We now wait to announce a positive response from Lord Coe and the organising committee.”

Barry concluded, “Our sincere thanks must go to Mr Andrew Reeves-Hall for his initiation and the energy he has put into this campaign.”

Whitchurch mayor Cllr Barry Jackman and area MP Sir George Young with mayoress Sandra Jackman, campaign organiser Andrew Reeves-Hall, and excited youth Tosha Reeves-Hall.

IMPRESSED

Sir George said, “I was impressed by the number of people who had signed the petition, and I hope Seb Coe and his team will be able to respond to the request of people from Whitchuch, Overton and the surrounding villages on the B3400.”

Overton Parish Councillor Peter Baker was present at the ceremony and declared that over 1200 signatures were collected in and around Overton alone. Earlier, the clerk of Longparish Parish Council delivered petitions with 80 signatures. Several other villages and towns along the proposed route also participated in collecting signatures for the petition.

OVER 2100 SIGNATURES

Approximately, 2120 signatures have been collected up until the handover ceremony. The campaign started on 7th November when the Torch Relay organisers announced that the relay would visit Basingstoke and Kings Worthy on Wednesday 11 July 2012. The route between the two town has not yet been decided, although the official website shows a straight line parallel to the M3 motorway.

Campaign organiser Andrew Reeves-Hall said, “People from all over this area have taken part in this grass-roots campaign and here today we see this impressive result. I must thank everyone who has taken part – especially the many students at Testbourne who signed the petition and are the keen youth that the Olympics aim to inspire. We’ve gone for gold – now we await the Torch Relay organisers’ judgement.”

Andrew stated that petitions turned in at the Town Hall between now and the end of January will also be forwarded to the Olympics organisers.


The official Torch Relay website is HERE. The local campaign page is HERE. Stories related to it are here:

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