It was our best attended Street Party and Olympics and probably the most exciting and enjoyable community event since VE Day. The three Olympic teams were evenly matched but the Flatliners, in red, began to pull ahead with the cycling events, including a novelty slow cycle race and the tug-of-war.
There was plenty of exercise before the flame was even lit, as the inexhaustible dancers from NLPAC gave us an exciting display. Then the Games began with the Mini-Marathon which started in Beattock Rise this year and with no short cuts for softies. Ooh-er. St James’s Lane won it by a good 20 yards with a truly Olympic performance by one of their male athletes. Little Hannah was the first woman home and she also proved her mastery of the uphill cycle challenge on behalf of the team in blue (the Broadway Babes). Table tennis was as popular as ever and at 5.15 Lynne Featherstone MP presented the Olympic medals.
Throughout the Olympics various sideshows and stalls were active, including Dr Bike, LA Fitness, Marks and Spencers and Greener Haringey as well the children’s games and competitions. The sun shone on it all.
At about 5.30 we had a wonderful banquet (on a bring and eat basis) and spontaneous entertainment on stage as youngsters stepped up to perform at the Open Mic, including a heart-stopping rendering of Danny Boy by Frances Cummings and some amazing songs to the guitar by 13 year old Joseph Trafford. The tone was suitably lowered by an ad hoc Country and Western group from No 4 HP who gave us a selection from their album Hillfield Raspberries for Ever [I may have misheard] and then we had quite astonishing performances by all ages, recorder playing, songs from the shows, a virtuoso saxophone solo, a couple of barnstorming sets by the Fretts and songs to flop out to from Janie’s brilliant choral group Viva Voce. Mama Mia echoed round N10 and quite a bit of N8 too: magnificent.
For the first time since the turn of the century we managed a group photograph, skilfully executed from a tall ladder by Stuart Chorley: