As a former Beckwith Scholar and a past UK School Games Champion, I was invited as a VIP guest to the Olympic Park to present medals to this years Sainsburys 2012 School Games Champions.
I really enjoyed myself it was lovely spending time with Geri Halliwell, Sir John and Henry Beckwith and meeting Bluebell, Geri’s daughter. As part of my VIP duties I was asked if I could present medals and visit as much of the Olympic Park as possible, which I did.
The Athletic Stadium is superb and presenting medals to the champions was great, The Aquatic Centre, which I had already seen a few weeks ago when I competed at the ASA Swimming Championships/ London 2012 Trials, is amazing.
Whilst at the Athletic Stadium I was introduced to a partially sighted young girl called Ketty, from Uganda, she said in her country babies with disabilities (like me & her) are taken to the forest and left there to die. Ketty was brought to England as part of The British Councils International Inspiration Programme.
She was overwhelmed to meet me, she cried with joy and said I was the first disabled person she had met that inspired her to live. She said it was amazing to meet a National Swimmer/Sports Person that started from nothing like herself, who comes to places like the Sainsburys games to speak to people like her. I am so glad I could help and inspire her, and as one athlete to another I wish her every success in the future.
There were performances by Spellbound and Cover Drive at the closing ceremony which was held in the Basketball Arena, this area was equally awesome.
Swimming is my life, in or out of the water, I just love it, and if I can inspire and motivate others on the way it makes it even more enjoyable. And I certainly love being a VIP (now, now, don’t laugh), my next public appearance is on the 4th June, I have been asked if I could officially open The Hockley & Hawkwell Diamond Jubilee Celebrations.