Jon carries flame by Royal appointment

Todmorden scoutersRowena Goldthorpe and Jon Sayer ready for the 50th Gang Show.
Todmorden scoutersRowena Goldthorpe and Jon Sayer ready for the 50th Gang Show.

A SCOUT volunteer will carry the Olympic torch today, Thursday, after being nominated by the Duchess of Cambridge.

Jon Sayer, 33, of Todmorden, was nominated to carry the flame on the penultimate day of the torch relay as a reward for his commitment to scouting in his local community.

Jon will join torchbearers from Mountain Rescue England and Wales, and MapAction who will get to meet the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry, as well as 40 athletes from the Team GB Ambition Programme.

Jon said: “To get to carry the Olympic torch is fantastic.

“To be able to carry the flame and meet the Duchess of Cambridge, who is a volunteer in scouting herself, is absolutely incredible.

“It will be such an amazing day, one I will remember for the rest of my life.”

Jon was chosen for his inspirational volunteering.

He has been a scout volunteer for 16 years, working simultaneously with a cub scout pack and an explorer scout unit, as well as fellow volunteers through the training they undertake.

As well as volunteering in scouting, Jon has trained as a lifeguard and also volunteers as a special police constable.

While on duty on his birthday last August, he rescued a man from the swollen River Calder near Key Sike Lane, Todmorden, a feat which was later rewarded with a special commendation.

He climbed down into the water, reached the man in danger and dragged him to safety.

Eyewitnesses believe that Jon’s swift actions saved the man’s life.

Jon’s friends and colleagues describe him as “loyal, dependable and trustworthy”.

He is one of more than 100 scout volunteers in the UK who have been given the opportunity to carry the Olympic torch.

UK Chief Scout Bear Grylls said: “I’m super proud that so many scout volunteers have been rewarded for the adventures they offer young people with this once in a lifetime Olympic opportunity,

“The Olympics is all about unity and friendship, two things that scouting has close to its heart.”

The Duchess of Cambridge became a volunteer with the Scout Association in January.