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Olympic torch in new exhibition at Dales Countryside Museum

Hawes, 2 July, 2012

 One of the Olympic torches that visited Wensleydale last week will become part of a new exhibition opening in the Dales Countryside Museum in Hawes.

 Called "Sporting Spirit", it will run from Saturday (July 7) to September 4 and celebrates the competitive spirit of Dales communities.

 Maurice Collett, the 89-year-old Kendal man who carried the torch in the Aysgarth Falls stage of the Olympic torch relay, has kindly loaned it to the Museum, which is owned by the Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority (YDNPA), for the exhibition.

 Museum Manager Fiona Rosher said: "The long-standing sense of community and competitive spirit in the Yorkshire Dales is evident in the number of shows, festivals, sports and annual events within which competition plays a major role.

 “We are thrilled that Maurice has agreed for his Olympic torch to be displayed within the exhibition.

 “It will add a different dimension, bringing the story of sport and sporting links in the Dales up to date. Visitors will be able to see the torch at close hand, together with other artefacts related to sport and competition."

 Maurice was one of three runners who carried the torch from the main road in the village to the Aysgarth Falls National Park Centre. There they were greeted by crowds of people including children from six local primary schools.

 National Park Authority staff and Dales Volunteers ran a series of Wild Wednesday activities in the afternoon and the Swaledale Mountain Rescue Team staged demonstrations at the Upper Falls. k2012

National Parks Week is being held from July 30 to August 5 to coincide with the Olympic Games and all 15 national parks across the UK are celebrating their winning landscapes and the sports people who use the rugged outdoors to challenge and inspire themselves. More details can be found on the YDNPA website at www.yorkshiredales.org.uk/winning.

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