Torch completes Rutland Water leg and heads to Uppingham

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THE OLYMPIC torch has completed its journey across Rutland Water and is heading to Uppingham.

The boat-to-boat kiss was the only one on the route. It took place in front of the church at Normanton.

Torchbearer Matt Usher from Wellingborough was watched by his family who were on the Rutland Belle.

His father Terry said he was “very proud”. he added: “It was incredible to see the number of people who have come out to sypport it.”

Matt’s wife Rosemary was there with their children Ciara, nine and James, five. She said: “It was nice for the kids to be able to watch. It’s something for them to remember.”

The torch was welcomed by thousands of people in Langham and Oakham.

People lined the streets to see it being carried through the village and then the town before heading off to Rutland Water, Uppingham and then Stamford.

Heather Graham, who was nominated for her role as a volunteer life saving instructor in Chapel St Leonards, received the torch in Langham from Nia Durant.

Heather said before setting off: “It’s a bit overwhelming to see so many people and I am feeling a bit nervous. It didn’t really hit me until this morning that this was really happening.

“Lots of my family and friends are here but it is lovely to get so much support from people here in Langham as well, especially the school children.”

All the pupils from Langham Primary School were out on the streets to watch the convoy pass, as well as thousands of villagers who lined the streets waving flags.

Assistant headteacher at Langham Primary School Suzanne Coughlan said: “We have spent the whole day celebrating the Olympics and the children made their own torches to bring down today. They are all so excited.”

After it had passed, Ollie Cheikh, who lives in Oakham and watched the relay with her 11-year-old daughter Zina, said: “I enjoyed seeing it. It’s a once in a lifetime opportunity and the atmosphere was fantastic.