SOUTH Kesteven celebrated sporting success at Grantham’s Guildhall on Tuesday night.
The event – attended by around 140 people associated with the diversity of sport across the district – also marked the civic recognition of Grantham Town’s promotion to the top Northern Premier League by winning the Evo-Stick Northern Premier League Division One South by 10 points and the first public showing of the Olympic torch relays film, commissioned by South Kesteven District Council.
Coun John Smith, portfolio holder of green, healthy and arts, so in effect the council’s Olympic champion, kicked-off proceedings by saying the fighting spirit of Grantham Town Football Club had been shown by townspeople who braved freak storms to greet the Olympic Torch relay, which he described as a: “Once in a lifetime moment.”
The film, which lasts almost 20 minutes, showed the Torch relay in Grantham, Stamford, Burghley House, Belton House, Market Deeping, Thurlby and Bourne and featured interviews with torch bearers, members of the public, councillors and officers.
SKDC chief executive Beverly Agass said more than 150 staff had been involved in a team effort which had planning down to a fine art and brought an estimated 85,000 people onto the streets of towns and villages in the district.
She said: “I have seen the film a few times and it never fails to capture the sense of happiness and joy of young and old coming together in a real Olympic spirit.”
Exhibits celebrating the Olympic achievements of 1984 air rifle medallist Barry Dagger and 1948 London Games sprint relay silver medallist Alistair McCorquodale – whose son, Neil, revealed the story behind his convenient conversion from cricketer to athlete and back again – have been positioned in The Guildhall entrance.
Coun Rosemary Kaberry-Brown, SKDC chairman, said she was “very proud” of the sporting successes of the district and said the Olympic Torch film had been edited into four versions, which were for sale at £4.95, the proceeds going to her charities. The films are: The full version, Grantham and Belton House, Stamford and Burghley House and, finally, the Deepings, Thurlby and Bourne.