The London 2012 Olympic Games
Have the Olympics inspired you to take part in sport? Do you want to be the next Jessica Ennis or Chris Hoy? St.Helens has plenty of sports clubs you can get involved with. To find out details on a specific sport, please select it from the menu to the right of this page.
Less than quarter of a year on the Olympics and Paralympics continue to inspire and change lives here in the North West. Read all about the legacy that London 2012 has left here in the North West.
Olympic Torch Relay - Friday 1st June 2012
St Helens turned out to welcome the Olympic torch, with good weather boosting the number of spectators lining the route to an estimated 40,000.
Deputy Leader of the council and Cabinet Member for Urban Regeneration, Housing and Culture Councillor Barrie Grunewald said: “It was a fabulous occasion – and will long be remembered by all those who were there to see the torch go by.
“The crowds were immense – and reflected the interest that’s now being generated around the country by the 2012 games. It really brought everyone together.
“It was a truly inspirational event – and hopefully many of the young people who were there to see it will go on to pursue their own sporting goals and – who knows – claim their own place in a GB team of the future.”
The event was the culmination of weeks of planning by St Helens Council in conjunction with the police and Olympic organisers.
More than 6,000 schoolchildren also lent their support to the torchbearers, who included local women Natalie Corrigan and Kelly Whalley.
Natalie (23) is the principal and founder of Jem Xtreme and Spotlight Dance Academy and has coached hundreds of children. She also leads a successful squad of cheerleaders who have won countless trophies at national level.
Kelly (34) contracted meningitis as a young child – leaving her deaf and confined to a wheelchair. She also carried a baton during the Commonwealth Games build up. She was nominated for the honour by her brother, and carer, Giles.
Elsewhere, St. Helens residents made their mark by carrying the torch in neighbouring council areas. They included Andy Harper, who ran in Horwich, John Smith in Warrington, Andy Cowley in Wigan, Rachael Fishwick in Ainsdale, Tom Glynn of local streetdance group UC Crew, carried the torch in Chorley and St. Helens schoolgirl Claudia Dowdeswell tackled a leg of the route in Knowsley, past the safari park.
Motivating St Helens
St Helens Council is ensuring a lasting legacy for the Olympics with several sport, dance and volunteering projects awarded the coveted Inspire Mark.
The borough’s flagship Inspire event will be this summer’s St Helens Sports Festival on 13, 14 and 15 July at the Ruskin Sports Ground. Other Inspire-branded projects taking place in the borough include the Destination 2012 volunteering programme for those looking to gain experience in sport.
Haydock Sports College won an £8,000 grant to share their passion for the Games by helping to inspire seven local primary schools. The college organised an Olympic competition covering a range of sports, complete with opening ceremony and its own torch relay. The money was donated by the ‘Get Set’ London 2012 programme.