Paralympics Games ‘will change public perceptions’ of disability
THE Paralympic Games will change attitudes towards disability around the world, Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt said yesterday.
With torchbearers due to usher the Paralympic Flame on the final leg of its journey to the Olympic Park ahead of this evening’s opening ceremony, he said the Games were a “historic moment for the country that founded the Paralympic movement”.
Mr Hunt said: “For many Brits this will be the first time they have seen the Paralympic Games at all. It will be a very big moment to really change perceptions, and that will be something to be proud of.”
Meanwhile, Prince Harry is due to make his first public appearance since being photographed naked cavorting around a hotel suite in Las Vegas when he watches swimmers in the aquatic centre on Monday. He is later due to chat to competitors in the official meeting place for the country’s competitors – ParalympicsGB House.
The Games are on course to be the first Paralympics to sell out, with more than 2.4 million tickets sold already – half a million of those to overseas visitors. Ten thousand tickets will be available daily during the event.
London 2012 chief executive Paul Deighton said: “We’ve tried to get as many people in as we reasonably can. This is a wonderful illustration of how the British public have said ‘We love the Paralympics and want to be part of it’.”
This evening’s ceremony has already sold out, with 800 of the tickets given away to troops and police.
Many details of the show have been kept under wraps, but Bradley Hemmings, responsible for its organisation alongside fellow artistic director Jenny Sealey, promised it would be “both spectacular and deeply human”.
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Sunday 19 May 2013
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