Olympic Torch Relay

Olympic fever hit the streets of the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea on Thursday 26 July as huge crowds lined the route to cheer on the Olympic Torch.

As the torch entered the borough it was welcomed by the Mayor, Cllr Christopher Buckmaster and representatives of some of Chelsea’s most famous residents, the Chelsea Pensioners.

Famous fictional characters got their chance to join in the celebration when Patsy Stone and Edina Monsoon from Absolutely Fabulous better known as Joanna Lumley and Jennifer Saunders took the torch from Duke of York Square and carried it along the King’s Road.

A sketch of a person carrying the Olympic flameA community event in Holland Park was the main focus of the torch’s stay in the borough which saw arts and sports combine into a fantastic celebration of culture and sporting endeavour.

Opera Holland Park led the way in welcoming the torch with an exciting programme of operatic classics supported by a community choir and the City of London Sinfonia.  Members of the public joined in and even took turns in conducting the orchestra!

On the nearby sports field people had a chance to try out a whole range of Olympic sports including hockey, judo, volleyball and badminton.

The Leader of the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, Cllr Sir Merrick Cockell, said: “This was a fantastic welcome for the Olympic Torch.  The sun shone, the opera and choir were in great voice and there was a chance to try out some Olympic sports.

“Our residents and visitors lined the streets across the borough and I am sure that this will have been a wonderful experience for the torch bearers and one that they will never forget.”


Carrying the flame

The 80,000 torchbearers were drawn from inspirational people and local heroes from across the country, nominated by friends and communities, more than half of them young people. 

Read about some of our torch bearers.

Watch a video of Tabitha-skye McDuffus running through Holland Park with the torch!