Coventry & Warwickshire

Coventry celebrates art of queuing in Cultural Olympiad

Queues to pay respects to the late Queen Mother
Image caption The Q celebrates queues such as those to see the Queen Mother's coffin

People in Coventry have been celebrating the start of the Cultural Olympiad for the 2012 Games with a very long queue.

Theatre company Talking Birds created an outdoor performance in the city called The Q which it claimed explores "great queues of our times".

People were invited to form their own queues culminating in one long queue from 15:00 BST in Millennium Place.

It was part of a national cultural movement for the 2012 Games countdown.

Coventry's Ricoh Arena has been chosen as one of the football venues for the 2012 Olympics and the city will host the Olympic torch on 1 July before it continues its journey to the capital.

Lou Lomas, a spokesman for Talking Birds, said about 2,000 people watched or took part in the queuing performances and activities.

She said: "The British have, and always will be, world-beaters when it comes to queuing.

"The Australians have their swimmers, Ethiopia has their marathon runners and we have our queues."

'Traumatic queues'

The theatre company claimed its performance taught people about the consequences of pushing in, as well as how to hold your place in the queue. It aimed to demonstrate a variety of queues from the classic single line, to the moving 'S' queue.

Talking Birds also offered advice for a real queue for the sandwich and potato stall in the city's market to help make it more efficient.

Ms Lomas said: "The people of Coventry are brilliant. I think they have really got us, people have given us their queuing stories and we've all been in the traumatic queues, for the latest gadget or the last dress."

A poetry relay was also arranged at a number of locations across the region including in Hatton Country World and Polesworth, Warwickshire, as part of the Cultural Olympiad.

The 10-man relay began in Stoke-on-Trent where the first poet performed the start of a collaborative poem, which each subsequent poet had to add to.

Once the whole poem was performed racing pigeons were released to carry the 10 poetry segments back to their loft in Birmingham and the order in they which arrived determined the final form of the poem.

More on this story

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites