THE REAL OLYMPIC RELAY COMES TO NEWHAVEN AND SEAFORD
July 12 2012.
The Endurancelife Real Relay was devised to run alongside the official Olympic Torch Relay to restore the spirit of the Games, more in keeping with the 1948 Torch Relay in England. This relay is running continuously 24 hours a day, covering the main route and a few diversions, consisting of 8000 miles and is being undertaken by hundreds of runners from the local community and local running clubs.
The Real Relay started from Land's End at Midnight on Monday 28th May, ten days behind the Official Torch and will arrive outside the Olympic stadium on Sunday 22nd July. All runners who sign up for a stage of the Real relay are asked to donate a minimum of £10 to CHICKS, a charity providing week-long respite breaks for disadvantaged children from across the UK. See www.endurancelife.com/RealRelay for more details.
The leg from Lewes to Seaford is being undertaken by a runner from Eastbourne, Andrew Bettiss, who has something of an Olympic pedigree, in that his late Grandfather, Leslie Bettiss, was one of the runners carrying the Olympic Torch in 1948, when the flame was carried from London to Torquay for the sailing events. Andrew will be running approximately ten miles, following the Sussex Ouse Valley Way, having received the baton in Lewes at Cliffe Bridge at about 2.40am on July 18th, which just happens to be his 28th birthday. The route follows the Ouse from Lewes through Rodmell and Piddinghoe to Newhaven and then across to Seaford at approximately 4.15 am, where he hands over by the Martello Tower, to the next runner, who heads off towards Eastbourne on the next stage.
Andrew was nominated for the main Olympic torch relay in connection with his family history and his efforts in fundraising for Eastbourne Ambulance Community First Responders, for whom he has now run the 2011 and 2012 Eastbourne Half Marathons and the 2012 Brighton Marathon. However he feels the Real Relay is more in keeping with his Grandfather's memory and is pleased to have been able to secure a local leg, albeit in the middle of the night.
Andrew is the proud custodian of his Grandfather's 1948 torch, which was presented to Leslie when he completed his leg from Wembley and has several photographs and the original letter of invitation from the London Olympic Committee.