JAMES Dempsey, a Games Maker Volunteer at the Olympic Games in London, recently gave an inspirational talk to the Key Stage 2 (P5-P7) pupils of Bellaghy Primary school on his role during the summer games.
The Games Makers, who got the longest and loudest cheer at the closing ceremony, where at the heart of the games.
“One of the many roles the Games Makers undertook was to ensure that spectators had that warm welcoming feeling when arriving at the different venues. I myself was privileged to be one of the 70,000 Games Makers that were chosen,” said Mr Dempsey.
The Bellaghy man was based at the Excel Arena over by the Docklands in East London, which covered a lot of different sports from table tennis to boxing to weightlifting and many more.
“Part of the training involved 6 different round trips to London, 3 of these included different training sessions as well as uniform collection, working at the games and finally the athlete’s parade,” he said.
“Each different trip was self funded which included paying for flights and hotels during different training sessions as well as train fares and so on. When it came to games time I was very lucky that a fellow co worker Debbie Yarwood and her lovely family put me up for the duration of the games and I cannot thank them enough for this.**
“During the games we were provided with a pre paid travel oyster card which covered Zones 1-6 in London as well as provide meals for during shifts. We were also provided with a uniform.
“My time at the Olympics is unforgettable and these memories will last a lifetime. From the many different people I was working with, to interacting with the general public as they queued to wait to get into venue, with that each spectator that came through has a different story to tell as well as looking to grab a snap with us Games Makers.
“As we finished our last shift each of us was presented with a special baton along with certificates of thanks from both the London Organising Committee as well as our own team that we were involved in, in my cases, this was Event Services.”