County Durham’s bronze medal-winning Olympian Amy Tinkler will be officially welcomed home on Saturday with an open-top bus parade.
The 16-year- old will be joined by friends and family on a journey from her home in Bishop Auckland, through the town centre and across to Spennymoor, where a red-carpet celebration party awaits.
Durham County Council’s cabinet member for leisure, libraries and lifelong learning, Maria Plews, said: “It will be a great pleasure and an honour to welcome Amy back to Spennymoor Leisure Centre, which has been her sporting home since she was two years old.
“The council is proud to support South Durham Gymnastics Club and we hope that Amy’s success will not only be the memory of a lifetime for this talented teenager, but provide the inspiration for a generation of young people to take up a sport or strive to reach their own personal goals, whatever they may be.”
Along the route of the parade Amy will stop off at Bishop Auckland Town Hall and Spennymoor Town Show.
Mayor of Bishop Auckland Town Council, Cllr Ann Golightly, who will welcome the gymnast to the balcony of the Town Hall, said: “We are so proud of Amy and we want to offer as many local people a chance to show her how much they loved watching a young girl from their home town succeed in the Olympics.
“We would like to encourage members of the public to come along and take photos of this special moment from the Market Place.”
Bishop FM will also be in the Market Place – which will be temporarily closed to traffic – providing entertainment and a countdown to the arrival of the Olympic medallist, which is set to be at around midday.
From Bishop Auckland, the open topped bus will pass through Byers Green, Middlestone Moor, Kirk Merrington, stop off at Spennymoor Town Show and then heading across to Spennymoor Leisure Centre, via Tudhoe Green.
Cllr Ian Geldard, the leader of Spennymoor Town Council, said: “Winning an Olympic medal is such a huge achievement, even more so for someone as young as Amy.
“There has been a real buzz from the people of Spennymoor, knowing that she trained right here on their doorsteps.
“She is an inspiration and an example to the young people from this area that if you work hard you can achieve your dreams.
“It will be an honour and a privilege to welcome Amy in Spennymoor on her open-top bus tour this weekend.”
Spennymoor Town Council is encouraging local people to deck their homes and businesses in red, white and blue, and line the streets to wave to Amy as she passes on her Olympic homecoming ride.
Once back at the leisure centre – which is home to South Durham Gymnastics, where much of her Olympic training took place – Durham County Council has arranged for a red- carpet welcome.
Full details of Amy’s homecoming tour can be found at www.durham.gov.uk/amytinkler