Hughes Ellard’s Roger Sherliker will be taking part in sporting history this summer – as an official torchbearer for the 2012 London Olympic Games.
Roger, who heads up the valuation team at the regional commercial property agency in Southampton and Fareham, is one of 8,000 people selected to carry the symbolic flame in an 8,000-mile relay in the UK over 70 days.
He will hold the iconic Torch aloft in Southampton on Sunday, July 15, as part of a human chain which ends with the flame ceremoniously lighting the Olympic Cauldron at the London Olympic Stadium on Friday, July 27.
The age-old custom will indicate the XXXth Olympiad has begun; soccer celebrity David Beckham will help bring the Olympic flame to Britain today (Friday, May 18) after a formal handover ceremony in Athens.
Roger was chosen for his long-term contribution to local sport as a sprint coach at Southampton Athletic Club and for his work helping to coach the city’s Trojans Rugby Club 1st XV.
He said: “I feel honoured and flattered to have been selected to carry the torch; it is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and I can’t wait for the day to arrive and for the Olympics to begin.
“I’ve been warming up with a rolling pin – and getting helpful tips from Sir Chris Hoy, the cycling legend, during a practice day organised by Lloyds TSB, one of the presenting partners for the relay.”
Sir Chris, who has won four Olympic golds, said: “These Lloyds TSB Torchbearers have all worked incredibly hard already to be nominated and recognised for making a difference in their community.”
Roger also has a professional link – project managing the Royal Yachting Association’s Olympic training centre at Weymouth, Dorset, on behalf of Hughes Ellard.
The Torch’s roots can be traced back to ancient Greece, when a sacred flame burned continually on the altar of the goddess, Hera, during the Olympic Games.
In addition, heralds were summoned to travel throughout the country to announce the Games, declaring a sacred truce for the duration.