Hawick misses out on Olympic torch route

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HONORARY Provost Ron Smith has spoken of his disappointment that the route for the Olympic torch does not include Hawick, writes Sarah Williamson.

It has been announced this week that Borderers have been invited to host a welcome on June 14 when the Olympic flame reaches the region – but it will not be greeted by Teries.

Nominated torch-bearers will carry the flame through Eddleston, Peebles, Innerleithen, Walkerburn, Selkirk, Galashiels, Earlston, Gordon, Greenlaw, Duns, Chirnside and Foulden throughout the day – the torch relay starting in Greece before its 70-day journey in Britain.

Provost Smith commented: “It’s very disappointing that the torch will not be coming through Hawick. It would have been a great opportunity to encourage our schoolchildren towards sport and towards international awareness.”

But with the route planned by the London 2012 Committee to come within an hour of 95 per cent of people in the UK, Councillor Smith added: “Clearly the Olympic torch relay cannot cover every community and a route has to be chosen that maximises the number of communities which can be visited.”

The Olympic flame will be carried by 8,000 torch-bearers ahead of the opening of the London Olympic Games on July 27.