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Gravesham Council leader hails success of the Olympic Torch Relay
GRAVESHAM Council leader Councillor John Burden has hailed the Olympic Torch Relay as “the biggest community event in Gravesham, ever.”
Official figures reveal the relay through Higham and Gravesend on Friday (July 20) pulled in more than 47,000 spectators.
With crowds 10 deep along parts of the route, crowds watched 22 torchbearers carry the flame on a 90-minute journey through Gravesham.
Cllr Burden said: “This was the biggest community event in Gravesham, ever.
“The scenes were absolutely incredible - it’s a fantastic tribute to the sense of community that so much was going on.
“It was the culmination of a vast amount of work by the council, the police, Higham Parish Council, the NHS, St John Ambulance, religious groups and hundreds of individuals and dozens of groups.
“Gravesham owes a huge debt of gratitude to those who gave their time to make this so far beyond expectations.”
The council leader went on to praise police officers who pulled a 17-year-old man to the ground after he tried to grab the torch as it was carried along Rochester Road.
He said: “There was one, well documented incident, which temporarily grabbed the headlines, but even there the split-second reactions of the police were exemplary and deserve special praise as does the torchbearer who kept her composure.”
The Torch Relay saw the flame carried past sights including Gad’s Hill School, the Guru Nanak Durbar Gurdwara and through Gravesend town centre.