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Surrey residents to carry the Olympic Torch this summer

PUBLISHED: 13:43 11 June 2012 | UPDATED: 21:29 20 February 2013

Tom Smith, Croydon

Tom Smith, Croydon

The Olympic torch will pass through Egham and Felbridge on July 10 and July 17, respectively, before returning to Surrey on July 20.

The Olympic torch will pass through Egham and Felbridge on Tuesday July 10 and Tuesday July 17, respectively, before returning toSurrey on Friday July 20.


Here, it headsthrough Godstone, Bletchingley, Redhill, Reigate, Dorking, Westcott, Shere and Godalming before reaching Guildford for a night of free ticketed celebrations in Stoke Park.


After continuing its tour, thetorch eventually reachesHampton Court Palace and its final run along the River Thames to the Olympic Stadium for the opening ceremony on Friday July 27.


By Nick Atkin, Sportsbeat 0870 445 0156



Malcolm Styles, Redhill


A GLOBETROTTING Redhill fireman who won gold for his country at the World Firefighters Games has been officially given a role on this summers Olympic Torch Relay.


Malcolm Styles, who works for Surrey Fire and Rescue, represented Britain at the inaugural Games in New Zealand in 1990, triumphing with a gold medal in table tennis.


The 63-year-old, of Claremont Road, returned two years later to defend his title in Las Vegas but could not find a way past the quarter finals.


However Malcolm will return to the top as one of just 8,000 people to carry the London 2012 Torch, courtesy of Lloyds TSB, after his nomination by partner Rosa Collins was accepted this week.


It is quite the honour to be involved with the Olympic Games and Im really looking forward to it, said Malcolm.


I was very surprised when I found out I had been selected because there were lots of very worthy people who applied for it.


I have been very lucky that I have been able to travel in my job because not everyone gets the opportunity. I have had some great experiences and ones that I will never forget.


It is such a great feeling to know that I will be carrying the Torch, although it is something I guess I wont register until I actually do it.


Ive got great admiration for people in athletics that have to get up early every day and do their training.


Malcolm will run with the Torch on TuesdayJuly 17 through Felbridge but wont have much down time to enjoy the Games when they get underway proper after the opening ceremony on Friday July 27.


He will be on call during the Olympics with Surrey the site of a large stretch of the cycling road race and Royal Holloway providing accommodation and training facilities for athletes.


There will be quite a bit of involvement on our side, especially when the cycling is on. Ill be down at Egham too helping out as its the second biggest Olympic camp outside London, he added.


You tend to put on a few pounds when youre older. Hopefully I can use this as an incentive to get a bit more in shape.



Mike Fleet, Croydon


A SENIOR Croydon Harriers coach and former British 800m runner admits he is just happy to lend a helping hand after being rewarded with a place in the London 2012 Olympic torch relay.


Mike Fleet topped the British rankings in 1962 and reached the Commonwealth Games final in Perth the same year but tasted the bitter pill of Olympic disappointment when he failed to qualify for the 1964 Tokyo Games.


He channelled his frustration into coaching local youngsters into the stars of the future, with Olympic 400m runner Martyn Rooney and mens discus British record holder Lawrence Okoye among those to benefit from Mikes tutelage.


The long-established Mike Fleet Group, a 40-strong collection of athletes of all ages and standards, reflects the cosmopolitan Croydon community it serves.


Mike has become a true role model in the community by volunteering to coach people of all ages and standards since 1961.


The 74-year-old, who will be carrying the torch in Croydon on Monday July 23,couples this with coaching at Trinity, Whitgift, the Old Palace School of John Whitgift and Croydon High School for Girls and is content to be imparting his knowledge and experience.


I dont look for recognition I just want to help athletes young and old alike, said Mike. The reward is in the results they achieve and the pleasure which they derive from it.


There are hundreds of coaches like me up and down the country who dont get paid for what they do.


Hopefully I can show people that not all youngsters set fire to things and throw bricks through windows around here. Sport can be a very positive thing for Croydon.


It was very disheartening to miss out in 1964 because I had serious Olympic aspirations as an athlete.


But I was privileged to have some fantastic experiences and meet some fantastic people in my career.


Carrying the torch will go some way to make up for my disappointment. Its a great honour to be taking part in the London 2012 celebrations in such a way.


As well as volunteering his free time to coach, Mike officiates in athletics in many roles and is also dedicated to raising funds for Cardiac Risk in the Young (CRY) after the tragic death of a 15-year-old girl he coached.


Mike has raised 3,500 in her name to help bereaved families and fund heart scans for young athletes which would normally set them back 200.


The Sutton resident donates a pound from every purchase of his autobiography I Also Ran by Mike Who? and donates all the proceedings from selling bookmarks personally signed by the likes of Rooney, Dame Kelly Holmes, Mo Farah, Roger Bannister and more than 40 others.


People talk about tragedies in sport when you dont qualify for the Olympics, but they are put into perspective by the death of that young girl, said Mike.


She never even got to have that disappointment of not qualifying. One of my coaching friends was shot in the Munich Olympic terrorist attack too.


Some athletes dont realise how privileged they are. I have been one of the lucky ones.



Tom Smith, Croydon


A DEDICATED Croydon son and film director has been chosen to carry the Olympic Torch this summer following his impressive fundraising efforts for the Kent Air Ambulance Service.


Tom Smith undertook a series of projects to help raise funds for the service that in the summer of 2009 saved his father Stephen from a near-tragic fire accident.


Chief among the 24-year-olds efforts was a documentary charting Cranbrook Town Football Club and as a result of it he landed a job with broadcast hire company Video Europe.


But Toms fortunes havent stopped there as a nomination to carry the Olympic Torch, through Lloyds TSBs nationwide search for inspirational people, has been accepted.


Tom will be one of just 8,000 people to carry the London 2012 Torch courtesy of Lloyds TSB his leg coming on Wednesday July 18 through Hastings but he insists he owes it all to the people who helped keep his father alive.


If people didnt raise money for Kent Air Ambulance, then they wouldnt be able to save lives, said Smith. And making the documentary was the best thing Ive ever done but also the hardest.


We were taking a team that had never won anything in 100 years to a cup final and we got 1,000 people paying to watch the game.


Ive always wanted to be a director and now Im living my dream but I feel a bit bad because its like Ive almost skipped 20 years in the industry.


My brother called me and he was laughing, saying youre going to kill me but I nominated you for something a while back and now youve got to carry the Olympic Torch.


It was a real shock I didnt have a clue about it at all but its going to be a great occasion and I cant wait to do it.


As well as carrying the Olympic Torch this summer, Tom will be making Lemonade, a poignant piece about a fictional music festival in Kent with state-of-the-art Red Epic cameras.


Peter Jackson used similar equipment, costing around 2million to hire, to film The Hobbit but Video Europe agreed to lend Tom the cameras as a reward for all his fundraising efforts.


Off the back of the documentary they have seen my talent and allowed me to go and use their best cameras they trust me with it now, he added. I was always going to do the documentary anyway but I didnt expect it to become so successful.


Without that documentary there is no way Video Europe would let me do this. Now there is no reason why this film shouldnt make millions.




  • As the only National Presenting Partner of the London 2012 Olympic Torch Relay, Lloyds TSB is bringing the excitement of the Games and Olympic Flame closer to you. Find out what theyre doing in your community and who is carrying the Flame at www.lloydstsb.com/carrytheflame.


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