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Holmes to feature in London Games street party

Written by: Staff

LONDON, July 4 (Reuters) Double Olympic champion Kelly Holmes will join thousands of Britons in Trafalgar Square on Thursday in a street party to commemorate the first anniversary of London's successful bid for the 2012 Games.

Olympics Minister Tessa Jowell, London mayor Ken Livingstone and London Organising Committee chairman Sebastian Coe will speak at the event which will offer the public opportunities to take part in five Olympic sports.

London's triumph in Singapore ahead of the early favourites Paris was overshadowed on the following day when 52 people were killed and 700 injured after four young British Muslims blew themselves up on the city's transport system.

Accordingly at a media briefing yesterday, Coe was keen to stress that Thursday's event was not so much a celebration as a commemoration.

''I don't think we are having a celebration but reminding people about the opportunity we have,'' Coe said.

''The terrible events of July 7 have only strengthened our resolve to stage a spectacular Games in 2012. Sport has the power to unite and I hope the Games in 2012 can be an element in helping to pull together and create an even stronger and more resilient London.'' OLYMPIC BUS Coe made a wry reference to England's ''golden generation'' of footballers who failed to advance past the quarter-finals of the World Cup last Saturday.

''This is our golden generation,'' he said. ''We have been offered an opportunity that would not have been possible five years ago and, obviously, 30 years ago.'' A bus, bearing images of the some of the country's best-known Olympians which will travel throughout the country promoting the Games, will also be unveiled on Thursday.

Coe, the only man to win consecutive Olympic 1,500 metres titles, emphasised that the Games were for Britain generally and not just London.

''I have spent the last six to seven weeks on the road, rather than in this office,'' he said.

Reuters DH VP0630

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