LOCAL HEROES JOIN THOUSANDS OF LONDONERS FOR A DAY ON THE OLYMPIC PARK

The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, and Chairman of the London Legacy Development Corporation, Daniel Moylan, will today honour some of London’s most deserving local heroes, in a special awards ceremony at the Olympic Park.

  • 30 Olympic host borough Community Champions celebrated ahead of trip to London 2012 Paralympic Games Opening Ceremony
  • The first of 10,000 locals and Londoners to win Paralympic tickets and get a taste of the future Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park

The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, and Chairman of the London Legacy Development Corporation, Daniel Moylan, will today honour some of London’s most deserving local heroes, in a special awards ceremony at the Olympic Park.

The Community Champions were nominated by members of the Olympic host boroughs and selected by a panel of local media, who recognised the winners’ unique contributions to their communities.

The Community Champions are amongst 10,000 Londoners who have won tickets to the Paralympics through the London Legacy Development Corporation’s A Day in the Park competition. Ticket winners will experience the excitement of London 2012 Paralympic Games, while getting a first taste of what Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park will offer them when it starts to re-open from July 2013.

Thousands of winners, including parties from 15 London streets and 94 London community groups, will join hundreds of families from across the capital to enjoy a day on the Park.

Following the award ceremony, the newly crowned Community Champions will attend the London 2012 Paralympic Games Opening Ceremony.

The Community Champions will become Legacy Ambassadors to the Legacy Corporation, representing their local communities and helping to shape the future development of Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. They will also be invited to an exclusive tour of the Park before it re-opens, and attend the opening of the North Park in July 2013.

Daniel Moylan, Chairman of the London Legacy Development Corporation, said:

“We are giving thousands of Londoners the opportunity to experience the excitement of the London 2012 Paralympic Games. They will also get a taste of what Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park will offer them when it begins to re-open from July 2013.

“The next few years will build on this exciting time for east Londoners. We’ve been working closely with the local community to make sure the wonderful venues that hosted the world’s greatest athletes can be enjoyed by people in the area for generations to come.

“Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park will also become a place where people want to live and work. We’ll continue to make everything we do count for local people in terms of jobs, apprenticeships, business opportunities and homes.”

The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson said:

“Londoners have been fantastic hosts this summer, helping to make the 2012 Games the greatest show on earth. It’s only right that we recognise their commitment by putting them at the heart of this thrilling spectacle of sport.

“Our 30 Community Champions have given invaluable support to those in need in their neighbourhood, so I am honoured to be able to present them with these awards and give them a taste of the excitement surrounding the Paralympics at the Opening Ceremony.”

Graham Mann, a Community Champion winner from Barking, was nominated for his dedication to young people in the area, having been involved in the Council Youth Service for five years.

Graham Mann said:

“The work I’ve done with local people over the last 5 years, establishing six youth clubs and working closely with the council’s Youth Service, is rewarding in itself, but to know I’ve been recognised in the borough and given the chance to experience the London 2012 Paralympic Games is a wonderful feeling.”

The Community Champions award ceremony is being supported by Ottobock, the Official Prosthetic, Orthotic and Wheelchair Technical Service Provider for the London 2012 Paralympic Games. The ceremony will take place in Ottobock’s showcasing at Prestige Pavilion, which will offer information on the future Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park and how the Park will continue the London 2012 Paralympic legacy.

The Ottobock Passion for Paralympics exhibition also features some of the technology which enables Paralympians to compete, including hand cycles, wheelchairs designed specifically for playing sport and the iconic carbon fibre running blade.

Residents of east London were invited to nominate their Community Champions through Archant media titles. Nominated entries were judged by a panel comprising of Editors of Archant media and representatives from the Legacy Corporation.

The Community Champions initiative is part of the London Legacy Development Corporation’s A Day in the Park ticket giveaway that has given 10,000 Londoners the chance to visit the Olympic Park and experience the London 2012 Paralympic Games.

Over the next 18 months, the Legacy Corporation will turn the Olympic site into a new piece of the city, with new homes, jobs, schools, entertainment and recreational attractions. The 560 acre Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park opens in phases from July 2013, and will be fully open by spring 2014. The North Park and Copperbox arena will be the first to re-open exactly a year after the Opening Ceremony of the Olympic Games on 27 July 2013, and by December 2013 the UK’s largest VeloPark with over 18km of pathways will be open alongside the Eton Manor neighbourhood and the new school Chobham Academy. By spring 2014, the 50 acre urban park known as the South Plaza will be ready for use, as will the Aquatics Centre and the ArcelorMittal Orbit.

The transformation phase has three main objectives: To clear Games-time structures including temporary venues, bridges, walkways and roads; to connect the Park to the surrounding area with new roads, cycle and foot paths; and to complete permanent venues, bridges and parklands ready for residents’ and visitors’ everyday use.

To find out what Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park will offer, visit www.noordinarypark.co.uk