John Simpson Vice President Wenlock Olympian Society carrying the torch through Much Wenlock.
The Home of the Modern Day Olympics.
Much Wenlock’s local doctor and philanthropist William Penny Brookes established the Wenlock Olympian Games in 1850 , the forerunner of the current modern Olympics. Whilst pursuing his own Olympian games in Wenlock, Brookes was also determined to see his vision translated to a wider, international stage. He campaigned vigorously and was in contact with the organisers of the Olympian Games in Athens.
Brookes shared his vision for an international Olympian festival with Baron de Coubertin who visited Much Wenlock and was inspired by Brookes’ ideas and what he had achieved. This wealthy and influential French aristocrat went on to form the International Olympic Congress and the first Games of the modern Olympics took place in Athens in 1896. The ultimate realisation of Brookes’ lifelong dream.
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