North East Wales

Olympic taekwondo gold winner Jade Jones's welcome home

Olympics gold medal winner Jade Jones has returned home to a big welcome from family and friends.

The 19-year-old found a "crazy" number of people outside her mother's home in Flint, where a postbox has been painted gold to celebrate her taekwondo win.

"Everyone I've seen has been congratulating me and I've had lots of cards through the door," she said.

A homecoming party and civic reception is due to be held next week, as well as an open-top bus tour around the town.

But there was bunting and a banner outside her mother's home saying "Well done Jade" as well as poster of a special Royal Mail stamp in the window saying "gold medal winner".

"It still hasn't really sunk in," she told BBC News. "All the people waiting for me now is crazy really."

Image caption A crowd welcomed the gold medal athlete back home to Flint

She left London on Monday and stayed in Manchester overnight before arriving in Flint on Tuesday afternoon, and declaring her determination to defend her title at the next Olympics in 2016.

The teenager said: "It's a bit weird being Olympic champion at 19, but 100% I want to go to Rio."

Hundreds of people attended a party in July at Flint Sports and Social Club to wish her well before she left for London 2012.

The same venue was also packed by friends and family who watched her fight live.

Town mayor Vicky Perfect said: "Jade's fantastic achievements have really put Flint on the map.

"A civic reception and an open-top bus tour are the least we can do for her.

"She's an amazing girl and we're very humbled and proud by what she's done.

"It's given the whole town a real feelgood factor."

She said Flint had always been proud of another local hero, former Liverpool and Wales footballer Ian Rush, and said: "Now, to have an Olympic gold medallist is absolutely wonderful."

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