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Watton Olympic Torchbearer speaks of her pride after carrying Breckland’s Olympic Torch

PUBLISHED: 11:08 24 July 2012

Gill Smith, from Watton, with her Olympic Torch in front of the East Anglian Air Ambulance.

Gill Smith, from Watton, with her Olympic Torch in front of the East Anglian Air Ambulance.

Archant

A Watton Guide leader has spoken about her pride of being an Olympic Torchbearer after taking the torch on a tour of Breckland.

Gill Smith, 55, an office co-ordinator, was nominated to run with the flame by her husband Alan, 63, and she was selected by Samsung.

Mrs Smith has volunteered with the 1st Saham Toney Guides since 2009 and has recently been made assistant leader.

She has also been an East Anglian Air Ambulance volunteer since 2010.

The mother and grandmother ran through Lowestoft with the torch on July 5 and since then she has shared it with Rainbows, Brownies, Guides, young leaders and Guides on the Watton District Guiding group.

Mrs Smith also took the torch to Ashill Beavers, youngsters at Ashill Primary School and Norwich Airport - the home of the East Anglian Air Ambulance - where she met other volunteers.

As well as touring with her own Olypmic Torch she has also been involved with Breckland’s own Olympic torch.

The so-called Friendship Flame started and finished its route from Dereham and was cheered on by 4,000 people along the 120 mile relay.

Mrs Smith was involved in the first leg of the Breckland Torch Relay with the Watton Guiding District, which took part in the Village Games at Watton Sports and Social Club.

She said: “The girls were able to greet the torch carried by Paul Evans - ex-Olympic Runner - and had their turn at carrying it in a relay at the sports centre.

“What a lot of pleasure it gives me to share the torch with so many people who are excited and want to be able to say I saw/touched and had a picture taken with one of the real Olympic Torches.

“For me that is what the privilege of carrying the Olympic flame is all about. Hopefully my moment to shine has bought excitement and pleasure to lots of people who would not have otherwise got to seeing a torch up close.”

Some 136 Wayland area guides and brownies took part in the Olympic spirit at the Dereham 5k event on July 22, which incorporated the final leg of the Breckland Torch Relay.

Mrs Smith ran with the Friendship Flame at the event, along with Dereham runner John Richardson, who was an Olympic Torchbearer at Fleetwood, Lancashire.

She said: “Running in here today was almost like doing a re-run. The torch is meant to be for everybody. It’s not for the stars. It’s for ordinary people who do their bit.”

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