While I imagine most readers of this column had the chance to join in the activities and festivities surrounding the passage of the torch through Cornwall - I would like to share my impressions gleaned from the reporting of the BBC as I watched all day from my bed in hospital (recovering from surgery for a broken hip).
Anyone who has spent any time in hospital knows how difficult it is to sleep on a ward but I was pleased to be awake for the early start of the BBC News 24 coverage of the day’s events in Cornwall.
It was a great day for the Duchy, which was on show to the worldwide audience watching the Torch’s progress. The superlatives trickled off the tongues of the TV presenters all day, referring to the great natural beauty of Cornwall, the tremendous community spirit, the pride in our history and love of sport - as well as the great weather. The hosting of the Finn World Championships in Falmouth just before the torch arrived was the topic of much discussion, along with Ben Ainslie’s magnificent victories in those championships.
No one watching could have been left in any doubt what a great place Cornwall is, and in particular what a centre of excellence for international sailing Falmouth is.
It was also great to see young people of all ages and backgrounds got involved with the many free sporting and cultural activities put on. Falmouth prepared for the coming of the Torch with an open to all ‘flame’ party on Events Square on Friday night, followed the next morning by an Olympic style decathlon for children at the Dracaena Centre. Meanwhile in Truro Lemon Quay was transformed into a Sporting Carnival, with crowds being entertained by theatre performances, sports performances by local clubs and a variety of circus workshops. The streets of Truro and Falmouth were both packed all day, with visitors drawn in by the passage of the torch and the associated events learning what special facilities each town centre had to offer.
My congratulations go to all those people and organisations who came together and brought the spirit of the Olympics to Truro & Falmouth over this very special weekend.
By the time you read this article I hope to be up and about with the aid of crutches and with lots of help from my family. Thanks to modern technology, I will be able to carry on working via the phone and email. The doctors have given me strict instructions to keep off my feet for six weeks so you will not see me around as much as usual. However, my really helpful team will be working as hard as usual so that any constituent that needs my help will get it. Do not hesitate to contact my office, as ever my focus is on ensuring that my constituents get the help that they need.