London 2012: Redbridge residents out in force as thousands cheer Olympic torchbearers
An estimated crowd of thousands lined roads across Redbridge to greet the Olympic Flame as it made its way through the borough this morning.
Thirty-five torchbearers jogged, and even sailed, as they paraded the Flame five days before the Opening Ceremony of the 2012 Games.
The Torch was taken on a boat across Fairlop Lake in Fairlop Waters Country Park, Forest Road, Barkingside having set off from Redbridge Cycling Centre at 7.19am.
Crowds swelled around Fullwell Cross roundabout in High Street, Barkingside as people sought out a vantage point from where to see the Flame.
Hundreds of people cheered as drivers rode through High Street in the minutes before the Torch arrived, and police motorbike riders high-fived young and old as they zipped past.
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Irene Mamo, 61, of Fullwell Avenue, Barkingside, said: “Now the Olympics are here there’s a lot of excitement and people are getting into the spirit.
“I hope we get something back from it and that it [the Olympics] go well.”
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As the Flame was carried past, many ran alongside it as they embarked on a relay of their own.
Later in the morning the Olympic Torch was carried into Valentines Park where crowds saw it in the shadow of the 17th century Valentines Mansion.
As it emerged from the mansion after a 35-minute stop, crowds in Cranbrook Road greeted the next torchbearer with a huge cheer.
Seventeen-year-old Denea Jospeh, 17, who watched the Torch come past her house, said: “I had a really good view. I thought there would be a bit more atmosphere and noise but it was really good.”
The Torch ended the Redbridge leg of the relay by passing Redbridge Town Hall in High Road, Ilford and making its way down Ilford Lane.
The Flame is now being carried in Barking and Dagenham before making its way to Havering and Bexley.
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