The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry are to become Official Ambassadors for Team GB and Paralympics GB in the lead up to, and during, the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
Their Royal Highnesses will join a group of 27 of Britain’s most inspirational and accomplished Olympians from previous Games who were unveiled as 2012 Ambassadors by the British Olympic Association earlier this year.
As Ambassadors for Team GB and Paralympics GB, The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry will play a leading role in encouraging and inspiring the British public to rally behind the more than 900 Olympic and Paralympic athletes, who will compete for Great Britain and Northern Ireland at the London 2012 Games. Their Royal Highnesses will also use their roles to promote the importance of participation in Olympic and Paralympic sport and encourage greater awareness of the Olympic and Paralympic values.
The Duke and Duchess and Prince Harry have begun their Ambassadorial role with a message of support for the Team GB Ambition Programme, also announced today. The British Olympic Association’s Ambition programme is designed to develop athletes’ medal success at future Olympic Games by offering aspiring young athletes and coaches a unique, first-hand understanding of the Olympic environment during London 2012.
In his message of support, The Duke of Cambridge said:
“Catherine, Harry and I are honoured to be Ambassadors for Team GB and Paralympics GB. London hosting the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games will inspire so many people – particularly the young – to be the best they can be. We are hugely looking forward to this incredible sporting competition, but are also looking beyond next summer’s Games to the springboard it will provide for future success and excellence. The athletes and coaches taking part in the Team GB Ambition Programme are part of that future success – potential medal winners and sources of inspiration to come. We hope they enjoy the experience of London 2012 to the full, and learn from it how to become successful British Olympians of the future.”
Andy Hunt, CEO of the British Olympic Association and Team GB Chef de Mission for London 2012 said:
“As we come to the end of 2011, the excitement is building towards the Olympic and Paralympic Games next year. Our Team GB athletes and all those who support them have worked a lifetime for the opportunity to represent their country in front of a home crowd at the Olympic Games. Their achievements will inspire us all and we hope the values by which the Olympic Movement was founded; excellence, respect and friendship; will resonate in some way with everyone who watches the Games next year. We are delighted Their Royal Highnesses as Team GB Ambassadors will be a part of trying to make that vision a reality. It is a great motivation for Team GB that The Duke and Duchess and Prince Harry are supporting their efforts next year and we hope together we can ensure that the whole of Great Britain and Northern Ireland is behind our athletes in their quest for Olympic success.”
Tim Hollingsworth, CEO of the British Paralympic Association said:
“The Paralympic Games are coming home in 2012 and we want to use this opportunity to raise the profile of Paralympic sport in this country and ensure that the nation takes British Paralympians to their hearts. We’re sure that the presence of Their Royal Highnesses will help us achieve this goal and it will give the athletes a tremendous lift to know that they are going to be supporting them.”