THE ROUTE OF the Olympic torch relay in Dublin next month has been revealed.
The flame will cross south of the border early on Wednesday, 6 June and be carried through the capital by 41 torch bearers, the Olympic Council of Ireland have said today.
“The Olympic torch relay will bring the spirit of the London Games to Dublin and starts the countdown for the Irish team’s challenge at the world’s biggest sporting event,” OCI president, Pat Hickey explained this afternoon.
“It has taken many, many months of lobbying at the highest international levels to get the permission required to bring the relay south. All along, we have had the full support of Lord Sebastian Coe, chairman of LOCOG, the London Games organising committee for this move,” he added.
The flame will be in the country for just six hours after it’s received at the border by Olympic boxing heroes Wayne McCullough and Michael Carruth.
Following stops at the OCI offices in Howth — where President Michael D Higgins will be in attendance – and Croke Park’s Skyline, it will then be carried by well-known athletes like Shane Horgan and Paul McGrath as well as celebrities and members of the public.
The relay runs around the city, taking in the Garden of Remembrance, O’Connell St, Eden Quay, Custom House, IFSC, Sheriff St, Beckett Bridge, Holles St, Fitzwilliam Sq, Leeson St Bridge, Grand Parade and bridges on the Grand Canal before crossing Harold’s Cross Bridge, into Clanbrassil St, Patrick St, Christchurch, Dame St, Trinity College, Nassau St, Clare St, Upper Merrion St, Ely Place, Hume St, St Stephen’s Green — finishing at the Bandstand at around 11.50am.
An Taoiseach, Enda Kenny, will greet the runners at Government Buildings at 11.30am. The convoy will later speed back north where the relay re-commences its tour. The flame will be lit in Olympia tomorrow before it heads for Britain.
“I just hope I can keep it alight for my small leg of the relay,” former rugby international, Shane Horgan told RTÉ News last night. “But I’m really privileged and delighted to be a small part of it.”
Dublin’s Lord Mayor, Andrew Montague, meanwhile has called on residents to ‘come out on the streets’ for the event.
“The Olympic torch relay in Dublin offers us in Dublin a wonderful opportunity to share in the London 2012 experience. On 6 June, Dublin will become the only city outside of Greece and the UK to host the Olympic Flame. This is a huge honour and I call on all Dubliners to come out on the streets and cheer our torch bearers in what will be a great day for Dublin,” he added.