Bolton gives Jason Kenny an Olympic hero’s big welcome home
12:10pm Saturday 1st September 2012 in News
Thousands of people have flocked to the town centre to honour Bolton’s greatest Olympic hero.
The 24-year-old champion cyclist, Jason Kenny, looked shy as he looked over a bumper crowd in Victoria Square for his homecoming celebration after becoming the first double gold medallist of Team GB at the London 2012 Games.
He won the individual and the team sprints, adding to his gold and silver medals from Beijing 2008.
On Wednesday, councillors sealed Jason’s legacy in the town when they voted to approve naming the leisure facility at Bolton One as the Jason Kenny Centre, as well as naming one of the borough’s cycle paths after him.
At the meeting, where Kenny was described as an inspiration to the people of Bolton. Cllr David Greenhalgh said it was a wonderful tribute, adding: “He has the potential to go even further and become one of the country’s greatest ever Olympians.”
Boltonians congratulated the Olympian in today’s huge public celebration.
The Victoria Square event started at 11am, with entertainment from a Brazilian samba band, who paid homage to the 2016 Rio Olympics, and a performance by Bolton singer Laura White.
There have been street performers on cycles and a huge television screen will show footage of Jason’s winning performances.
Jason, who grew up in Farnworth and now lives in Sharples, came on to the Town Hall steps at noon with his medals. He was greeted by children from his former high school, Mount St Joseph, civic dignitaries and the public.
Golden confetti rained down on the crowd before Jason attended a civic reception in the Town Hall.
Council leader Cllr Cliff Morris said: “We are all exceptionally proud of Jason and his magnificent achievements and it is only right that we celebrate his achievements in this way.
“The council has marked 2012 as its year of sport and Jason is a fantastic role model and sporting ambassador for our town.”
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