On November 7, 2011, the Olympic Torch Route was announced. At this point Seaford was literally wiped off the map! Where did it go? Where are we now? Some 23,161 residents displaced! See for yourself on the London 2012 website.
The attached poster which has been spotted around Seaford town shows the genuine map featured on the London 2012 website – where Seaford has indeed been removed! As a paralympian, I am a little disappointed the torch is not coming through Seaford, but I do find it amusing that we don’t even have Seaford marked on the map!
I understand that there is a political undercurrent in Seaford where people feel excluded at the expense of towns like Lewes.
However, I am determined to bring the spirit of the Olympics and Paralympics to Seaford, despite the torch itself not coming here.
You may think the Olympics are just about sport. I love sport. I loved playing it and I enjoy watching it.
But the spirit of the Games goes beyond sport and is something everyone can relate to. This spirit is about respect and inclusion, friendship and participation.
It is about working together to celebrate diversity, to remove barriers, and to leave a legacy for future generations.
I am in the throes of planning an art project that brings together the torch run, my old school run, and a way Seafordians can celebrate the diversity of our landscape, harness our strengths, and share with others the wonderful things they can find when they explore beyond the torch run.
The project involves community participation, and aims for regeneration, increased tourism and showing what ‘treasures’ there are if you step outside Lewes and head this way! These posters are a prelim to the project, to try and get people talking.
I don’t believe in moaning, I prefer to lead by positive example. Actions speak louder than words, and this is my way of bringing positivity to our town. It would be easy to roll our eyes, and throw up our hands in despair at the torch not coming through our town, but I think we can take a different approach and use the torch and all it stands for to lead people beyond the torch run, beyond Lewes, and towards Seaford. Let’s put ourselves back on the map!
Kristina Veasey, Seaford