Gold - They're Indestructible
Published by Michael Ord for South Tyneside Homes in Housing and also in Communities
Lady Mayor Councillor Eileen Leask with tenants from Housing Plus and officers from South Tyneside Homes at the finale of the torch relay
Caption : Gold. They’re Indestructible.
Tenants from the Council’s Housing Plus schemes have shown they are all gold medal standard by successfully completing their own Olympic Torch relay around every Housing Plus accommodation in the borough, and finishing on Friday 27th July at Strathmore, the head-office of South Tyneside Homes.
The idea, which was the brainchild of the company’s Housing Plus Team, saw the torch beginning its journey on 3rd July at Croftside House in Whitburn and making its way around all of the schemes in South Tyneside, ending at McIntyre Hall Hebburn before a tenant from that accommodation walked it to Strathmore, to a rapturous reception from Councillors, officers and from other tenants who had participated.
Joining in the spirit of the occasion, Housing Director John Musson and Head of Supported Housing and Tenancy Services Paul Thompson took part in a fun race (bicycle vs. runner) from McIntyre Hall to Strathmore just ahead of the torch procession.
Each scheme has adopted a country to support during the games and a colourful display of flags was on display to add to the spectacle.
Tenant Keith Sumby, who was the first to carry the torch from Croftside House, said, “It’s been a very positive experience. You can’t stare at the four walls all day – we need to get out and do things. It was nice to see all the people”. Tenants Harry Koch and Billy Stewart walked with the torch from Hallgarth House to Porlock House and said, “Well it was raining when we did it, but nice to get waves from the car drivers,” while Linda McCarty, who carried it from Lakeside Hall to Lincoln Court said, “I’ve thoroughly enjoyed it. I had the grandchildren with me for support.”
Jenny Cooperthwaite, the tenant who carried the torch on the final leg of its journey to Strathmore, said, “It was something so different. I certainly didn’t expect to be the one carrying it over the finish line.”
The sun shone, Union Jacks were waved and Chariots of Fire music rang out as Lady Mayor Councillor Eileen Leask presented the participants with their own keepsake medals, saying, “I think you’re all fantastic to take part in such spirit. I only hope that Team Great Britain has equal success. Thank you for inviting me to such a wonderful day.”
Councillor Jim Foreman, Chair of the company’s Great Services Committee, said, “I was fortunate enough to take part in the first walk. I want to thank the officers whose organisation made this such a huge success, and all the tenants for their brilliant effort. We need the same spirit in the Team Great Britain in the Olympics and we’ll win some medals.”
Chief Executive Isobel Riley said, “This has been a wonderful event . Thanks to all the staff and of course most of all to the tenants who have joined in the Olympic spirit that has swept across the nation.”