Special Olympics underway
Monday 27 July 2009
Over 2,400 athletes visit Leicester for the eighth Special Olympics GB National Summer Games
The Special Olympics began on Saturday 25 July with an opening ceremony attended by Prime Minister Gordon Brown, Olympics minister Tessa Jowell and England rugby manager Martin Johnson.
The Games take place every four years, providing an Olympic-style sports competition for athletes with a learning disability. This year’s Games run until Friday 31 July, with 2,400 athletes from across the UK taking part in 21 sports across 19 venues in the city.
Saturday’s opening ceremony was held at Leicester City FC’s stadium, hosted by the team’s former midfielder Alan Birchenall. The ceremony included the athletes’ parade through the stadium, music from the recently reformed New Beautiful South and the lighting of the Special Olympics Flame of Hope.
The Prime Minister, who attended the ceremony with his wife Sarah, said: “These Games are a hugely important part of Britain's commitment to achievement in sports and to providing every possible opportunity for those with learning disabilities.”
See results and updates from the Special Olympics GB National Summer Games
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