Mick will be leading light for Olympics

North Shields Hockey Club founder Mick Riding has been named as one of thousands of Olympic torchbearers ahead of 2012’s London games next year.

Father-of-four Mick, of West Moor, was nominated by his wife Annette for his work at the club over the years.

The 55-year-old IT project manager said: “The whole thing will be fantastic. This is going to be bigger than the 1966 World Cup.”

Candidates for carrying torches have been selected through public nomination campaigns run by the organising committee of the games and Olympic sponsors, as well as by invitation.

Those with an offer have until Tuesday, January 25, to accept the date they have been given, provide a copy of required documents, and confirm their uniform size and access requirements.

The final torchbearer team line-up will be revealed by March after candidates pass the required background checks.

Mick is one of 8,000 people from across the UK due to take part in a 70-day Olympic torch relay ahead of the games next summer.

As reported in the News Guardian last month, the torch will travel the length and breadth of the country, stopping off at St Mary’s Lighthouse, near Whitley Bay, on Friday June 15, as well as locations in Cullercoats, Tynemouth, North Shields, Howdon and Wallsend the same day.

The relay starts at Land’s End on Saturday, May 19, and ends on Friday July 27 in London.

Details of the torch’s route are available online at www.london2012.com/olympictorchrelaymap