Coventry & Warwickshire

London 2012: Torch makers "disappointed" with route

Factory workers making the Olympic torches are "disappointed" they will not see them near their homes, the factory's boss has said.

Premier Group in Exhall, Coventry, is making all 8,000 2012 Olympic torches.

The firm's managing director, Dennis Meagher, said 80% of staff lived in north Warwickshire which was not included on the torch route next year.

A spokeswoman for the 2012 Games said the route had been devised after "extensive consultation".

In a statement it also said no-one would be more than an hour away from the Olympic flame.

Mr Meagher said: "I just think it's terrible for the people of north Warwickshire.

"Most of the guys who work at Premier live in the surrounding areas of Bedworth, Nuneaton, all the surrounding villages."

He said staff had spoken to him expressing their disappointment that they were making the torch but would not see it "run out" in their area.

He added that the contract had allowed them to invest £1.5m in new equipment and the creation of at least 12 skilled jobs.

The torch will pass through parts of Warwickshire on Sunday, 1 July and will end the day in Coventry which is the venue for 12 Olympic football matches.

On Monday, 2 July torchbearers will set off from the city and travel to Rugby and Dunchurch as the Olympic flame continues its journey.

Image caption The flame will travel across the West Midlands

Arena re-named

The first port of call for the torch in Warwickshire will be Alcester.

The route on 1 July will also include Newbold on Stour, Alderminster, Stratford-upon-Avon, Warwick, Royal Leamington Spa and Kenilworth.

It will then arrive in Coventry, where the Ricoh Arena will be temporarily re-named the City of Coventry Stadium for the football matches.

Councillor John Mutton, leader of Coventry City Council, said he hoped people would "seize the opportunity to join in the celebrations".

"We are delighted to have been given the opportunity to host the Olympic flame in Coventry and we are sure its visit will provide a celebration many of us will never forget.

"There is a whole host of 2012-inspired activity taking place across the region right now and I would encourage as many people as possible to get involved in any way they can before the chance passes us by."

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