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100-day Olympic countdown: cycling champion visits GMH Park

The 100-day countdown to the opening of the Olympic Games was marked in Southwark on Wednesday with events at Geraldine Mary Harmsworth Park and Elephant & Castle Leisure Centre.

Tony Doyle and councillors
Tony Doyle (centre) with councillors Catherine McDonald, Barrie Hargrove, Richard Livingstone, Dora Dixon-Fyle and Veronica Ward
100-day Olympic countdown: cycling champion visits GMH Park
Children from two SE1 primary schools took part in their own mini Olympics at Elephant & Castle Leisure Centre

Former British world cycling champion Tony Doyle MBE, chair of Southwark's Olympic Delivery Board, joined members of the borough's cabinet at the new outdoor gym in Geraldine Mary Harmsworth Park to encourage local residents to get fit and healthy in the Olympic year.

Outdoor gyms – such as those at GMH and Mint Street Park – are free, have a variety of equipment including exercise bikes, cross trainers and tread mills and are suitable for people of all ages and fitness levels.

Mr Doyle then joined children from St Jude's Primary School and St George's Cathedral Primary School to help judge their own mini Olympics with pupils competing in a variety of sporting events at the Elephant & Castle Leisure Centre.

"The Olympics are a wonderful opportunity for young people to explore different activities, make new friends and have a whole lot of fun," said Mr Doyle.

"I'm proud to be involved in encouraging school children to take part in sport which is enjoyable and really good for them. Who knows, one of these kids today might be tomorrow's world champion or Olympic medal winner."

Cllr Veronica Ward, Southwark's cabinet member for the Olympics, added: "With just 100 days to go until the London 2012 we want to see as many people as possible get into the Olympic spirit, try out a new sport or leisure activity and get fit and healthy.

"The games will provide a wealth of entertainment and spectacle to inspire our residents and with millions of visitors expected in London and Southwark we have the chance to welcome the world to our culture, heritage and sports facilities."

• Earlier this week it emerged that Elephant & Castle Leisure Centre will be closed to the public by the time of the Olympic Games in preparation for the demolition and redevelopment of the site.

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