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Olympic torch crowd total announced
3:16pm Wednesday 20th June 2012 in News
CROWDS of more than 80,000 celebrated the Olympic flame as it passed through in York on Tuesday, council officials have said today.
Police estimate that 55,000 people lined the route of the torch relay in the city. A crowd of 23,412 attended the celebration concert at York Racecourse, and 3,000 to 3,500 gathered at Knavesmire in the mnorning to watch almost 1,000 children from 23 York schools taking part in the Sporting Giants competition.
Sally Burns, the city council’s director of communities and neighbourhoods today praised all those invovled in the organisation, and said: “This was a smooth and safe event, and one that has become a highlight of 2012, the year when York celebrates 800 years of self-governance.”
A council spokeswoman said city-centre footfall was 25 per cent higher than on an average Tuesday, and also said an estimated 5,000 people cheered the torchbearers this morning, as the flame left the city.
Yesterday and today, the crowds were helped by 260 volunteer stewards recruited by York Cares from among the city’s largest employers, and trained by the council to work with the council's own stewards and police. Council cycle training officers also helped 170 cyclists who accompanied the torch convoy.
Street performers entertained the crowds and the council arranged sports taster sessions.
Coun Sonja Crisp, cabinet member for leisure and culture issues, said: “This is a fantastic celebration of volunteering in the city as well as a great show of talent. The Olympic Torch in York has really inspired the city to come together and thank you to everyone who made this such a special occasion.