Royston 2012 celebrations draw to a close

ROYSTON 2012: A Year of Celebrations drew to close at a ceremony on Friday.

The ceremony, which was held at Royston Leisure Centre, was a chance to look back at a host of special events that have taken place in and around the town over the last 12 months to mark occasions such as the London 2012 Olympics and the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.

The Royston 2012 coordinating committee staged seven major events and 17 themed events during the course of the year. These included the town’s own Olympic Torch relay, and a Jubilee Tea at Three for the elderly and people with disabilities. Mayor of Royston Cllr Lindsay Davidson, who is chairman of the the committee, said the year had been a “rollercoaster” ride.

Cllr Davidson said: “You are all an amazing bunch of people who have made this year of celebrations possible.

“It is remarkable what a small group of people can achieve together when they don’t care who gets the credit. We did all this together.”

In her speech Cllr Davidson praised the role of the volunteers who had taken part in events and the support in sponsorship from local businesses.

Indeed, the part played by volunteers was recognised with a presentation to Joan Price as volunteer of the year while the Royston 2012 co-ordinating committee was given an award for the best managed event of the year.

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The evening opened with the entrance of the Royston 2012: A Year of Celebrations flag and Royston’s own Olympic torch carried by Maurice Hill, of Royston Runners, and Mandy Jinkerson, with the Olympic torch she carried in the national torch relay.

Pupils from Roysia Middle School recalled their memories of the year, and the six Olympic gamesmakers from Royston who talked about their experiences during London 2012.

Guests included Royston MP Oliver Heald, patron of Royston 2012, and Cllr Joan Kirby, chairman of North Herts District Council.

Speaking at the end of the ceremony, Royston 2012’s deputy chairman Les Baker said Cllr Davidson could be proud of her achievements.

“Without her enthusiasm, determination resolve and persistence we would not have had the events of the past year,” he said. “She ensured that we did not just deliver events, but made them a success.”

He added that the community, too, could take “enormous pride” in its part of the year of celebrations.