Suffolk: Queen’s baton relay arrives in the county for a day of special events
- Credit: PA
Communities across Suffolk will be marking the visit of the Queen’s Baton Relay today with music, fairs, sports and celebrations.
From “colour runs” and pyrotechnics in Christchurch Park, Ipswich, to mass sports events in Lowestoft and Newmarket there will be events to get people of all ages up on their feet.
The baton, which has been touring the world in the build up to this year’s Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, arrives in the county this morning.
It will travel from Lowestoft to Newmarket, then on to Bury St Edmunds, and finally to Ipswich - carried by some of the county’s best-known sporting personalities.
The final stop, in Ipswich’s Christchurch Park, will see 80-year-old fitness enthusiast Ken Webb bring the baton into the park and hand it to Paralympic bronze medal-winning powerlifter Zoe Newson.
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It is hoped the baton will be seen by around 10,000 people during its visit which is the only time it will be in the east of England prior to the Commonwealth Games.
Ipswich Borough Council leader David Ellesmere said: “It is a great honour for Ipswich people to welcome the Queen’s Baton Relay to the town.
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“We were proud to host the Olympic Torch Relay here just two years ago and now we will be able to give a warm welcome to the baton runners.
Several official public events will be held in towns being visited by the Queen’s Baton during its tour through Suffolk to get people in a sporting mood.
Time: 7.45-9.30am. Where? Claremont Pier, Lowestoft. Entry: Open to the public.
The mayor of Lowestoft and a fanfare of live
music will greet baton bearer Anthony Ogogo in front of the pier. There will then be a mass warm-up before a breakfast run/jog/walk along the seafront split into two parts – a community run and a schools relay. A day of sporting activity will then follow on the beach for primary schools (morning), high schools and colleges (afternoon) and businesses (early evening).
Time: 10am-1pm. Where? Rowley Mile Racecourse, Newmarket. Entry: Open to the public.
A mass participation schools relay will take place when the baton arrives at 11am carried by Ron Wallwork.
Around 500 children from 22 schools will take part.
Before that there will be a mini festival of sport giving participants and spectators the chance to find out about a range of sports opportunities locally.
Later jockey Ryan Moore will ride down the Rowley Mile with the baton.
Visit www.newmarket.gov.uk for more information.
Time: 12.30-5.30pm. Where? Bury St Edmunds leisure centre. Entry: Invitation only.
The baton will arrive carried by Elizabeth Reynolds.
There will then be a Super 8s athletics competition involving over 400 local school children.
Super 8 is a multi-event, team-based competition aimed at being a stepping stone into traditional athletics.
The event will feature an integrated inclusive athletics competition for
young disabled people from five special schools.
Time: 2.45-6pm. Where? Northgate sports centre, Ipswich. Entry: Invitation only.
Around 700 9-11-year-olds and 80 young leaders will take part in a QuadKids athletics competition.
QuadKids is an exciting athletics concept designed to give children the opportunity to enjoy the benefits of athletics and identify the stars of the future.
The baton will be carried by Louise Jukes through a guard of honour formed of young athletes from Ipswich Jaffa running club. After its journey around the centre’s running track the participants will form a human England flag.
Time: 5-7pm. Where? Christchurch Park, Ipswich. Entry: Open to the public.
The 80-year-old keep fit enthusiast Ken Webb will bring the baton into Christchurch Park and hand it to Zoe Newson.
There will be stage entertainment from local bands and an interactive sports village. There will be a mass warm-up to prepare for a Common-wealth Fun Run.
Participants can choose to run either the normal run or through colour zones where they will have coloured powder thrown at them to create a stunning multi-coloured effect.