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Wednesday, 13 June 2012

Thank you Newcastle - it's been fantastic!

STOP PRESS - STOP PRESS Jake has updated his diary here.

So, technically speaking this is a day off...

First stop St. James' Park, home of Newcastle United Football Club - fantastic stadium.  Host to 6 scheduled matches including Brazil, Spain, Mexico and the USA women's squad and then quarter-final matches.  There should be some really exciting Olympic football games played here.

Our host was Dan from the NUFC Press Office, he was tremendously helpful and we had a superb morning checking out the 52,000 seater stadium.  We went pitch side and inspected the amazing job the ground staff are doing with the newly laid turf for the Olympics.

Jake checked out the racing car style seats in the  dug-out, heated apparently for those balmy winter evenings in the North-East.  We even tested out our vertigo by going to the top of the new stand.  Newcastle was looking very fine, the pitch was looking a long way down and the descent was an interesting journey and Jake said, "Wow!" a lot of times.

This is very high up and gives a great view.
Not for sufferers of vertigo.
2nd Venue for Jake's mascot
Destination London 2012 taxi cab

Our host for the morning, Dan from the NUFC Press Office.

After our tour we headed west to BBC Newcastle and an interview with the co-host of the afternoon programme, Jon Harle.  Jon immediately put Jake at his ease talking bikes and cycling stars and the interview was great.  Jon then followed it up by introducing Jake to some unsuspecting ladies who had come for a tour of the BBC - it prompted a quick whip round and coins collected in a first-aid glove (as you do...)

Off we pedalled in search of Sacred Heart High School for Girls.  We were greeted by David Bartley, Deputy Head Teacher and Louise Banfield, one of our original contacts from many months ago.  The school was incredibly peaceful and the pupils were obviously engrossed in their work so Gary took a photo and Louise took our PowerPoint Presentation and Year 10 will be receiving an assembly on Jake's challenge.  It will be great when we get some response from the pupils.

Then, typically Philip, we gate-crashed Sacred Heart Primary School, unannounced to discover they have a strong Eco -Schools and sports bias so we left our information for the Head Teacher, Mr Foster and hope to get some response over the next couple of days.
Olympic display at Sacred Heart Primary

We like Newcastle a lot, a little odd that there doesn't seem to be much in the way of Olympic fever but maybe that's just on the horizon.

Anyway, Jake's day ended on a particular high when, on arrival at the hotel, the manager knocked on our door and delivered a Newcastle United football shirt and a card signed by the staff.

One very happy boy!

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