Catch sight of an Olympic ‘athlete’ in Ripon and Boroughbridge

A basketball player and weightlifter found on the roundabout near Morrisons in Boroughbridge (S)
A basketball player and weightlifter found on the roundabout near Morrisons in Boroughbridge (S)

Sporting green figures have appeared in Ripon and Harrogate as the district gets ready to welcome the Olympics torch.

Sporting silhouettes have been placed on roundabouts and on public open spaces as Harrogate Borough Council’s Parks Team help celebrate the London 2012 Games.

A horse and rider near Ripon Racecourse (S)

A horse and rider near Ripon Racecourse (S)

In Ripon there is a horse and rider located near Ripon Racecourse, while in Boroughbridge there is a basketball player and a weightlifter on the roundabout near Morrisons.

Across the rest of the district there’s a javelin thrower, a footballer, a gymnast, boxers, swimmers, runners, a hockey player, an archer, cyclist and a tennis player.

The idea came from Harrogate Borough Council’s Parks Team as they looked at how we could celebrate locally the Olympics and the Queen’s Jubilee.

As well these sporting silhouettes, the team is also planning red white and blue baskets and troughs around the district which, of course, are the right colours for both celebrations. There are plans to mow out the Olympic Rings on Christ Church Stray in Harrogate and the display garden “Dive into 2012” the council created along with Harrogate College for the Harrogate Spring Flower Show is being relocated to Ripon Spa Gardens.

And keeping it in the family, the sporting silhouettes have been created by Neil McLaughlin, Nursery Manager for Bradford Metropolitan District Council, who volunteered his time to his wife Trish McLaughlin who is Harrogate Council’s Parks Development Manager.

Patrick Kilburn, Harrogate Borough Council’s Head of Parks and Open Spaces, says this has been a real team effort working very closely with partners and volunteers. “These two celebration events gave us a wonderful opportunity to come up with something new and exciting and I would like to thank everyone involved. And to say a special thank you to Neil who has spent a lot of his own time on this project, we have given the templates for the Olympic silhouettes to Bradford who will be doing something similar in their district.”