Saturday night saw the lighting of the Paralympic Heritage at the Stoke Mandeville Stadium in Aylesbury. The grounds around the stadium were a hive of activity on Saturday afternoon as we took a stroll round, and the area went into security lock-down at 3pm in preparation for the arrival of key members of the Paralympic movement who would be taking part in the ceremony. The event itself was shown (very briefly) on the Channel 4 news and featured Paralympic and featured double gold world and Paralympic champion Hannah Cockroft ignite the Paralympic flame as part of a tribute to the Paralympic motto of ‘Spirit in Motion’. This marks an historic event as it is the first time the Paralympic flame has been lit outside of the host country, and it is planned that Stoke Mandeville Stadium will host the lighting ceremony for every Paralympic Summer and Winter event from now on, to mark its status as the birthplace of the Paralympic movement.
After an afternoon of trying to have a ‘sticky beak’ at the preparations for the event we (me, my wife and our baby duaghter) were treated to a (not-quite) front row view of the amazing fireworks display from our living room window, there has to be some benefit to living in Aylesbury, right?