Home of golf welcomes Olympic Torch

The Olympic Flame has been taken across the famous Swilcan Bridge on the Old Course in the home of golf, St Andrews.

It was also used to recreate a scene from the film Chariots of Fire at the Fife town’s West Sands beach.

The torch travelled 145 miles on this leg of its symbolic journey around the UK, reaching Edinburgh Castle.

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A total of 115 torchbearers carried the flame past some of the country’s most recognisable landmarks, including the Forth Bridge, Stirling Castle, the Wallace Monument and the Falkirk Wheel.

The Swilcan Bridge dates back some 700 years and was originally built for shepherds herding their sheep over the Swilcan Burn that now winds through the first and 18th fairways. The small stone bridge is now one of the most famous spots in the golfing world.

At the Old Course, the torch was carried by Louise Martin, 65, from Dunblane.

Mrs Martin is chair of Sport Scotland. She said: “Now that it’s over, it’s quite surreal. I can’t believe I’ve actually done it. It’s churning inside, just the pleasure and what it meant to me.”

Keen athlete Joseph Forrester, 13, ran with the flame along the West Sands. He was followed by 20 pupils from Madras Primary School.

Joseph is a member of Fife Athletics Club and dreams of running for Team GB in long-distance events.

Yesterday’s procession marks the 26th day of the torch’s marathon relay of the UK.