Woman standing in garden with Olympic torch

"It was inclusive, I was just one other person. I wasn’t any different to anybody else."

“I think maybe the greatest challenge was getting out in the world and being able to live like a sighted person, being able to do what everyone else can do. I lost my sight when I was five so I grew up not being able to see. I had to go to a boarding school and we had to become independent. From a very early age we had to do things for ourselves. I think that helped to give me confidence.

So the phone rang and I thought ‘who’s going to try to sell me something’? It was the Bank of Scotland to say that I had been selected as a possible torch bearer for the 2012 Olympics, but I had to keep it secret. Sure enough I got another phone call to say ‘you’re going to carry the torch’.

I got to feel the shape of the torch and we were shown how we would need to carry it. It’s quite heavy and you have to hold it up.

Because I was registered blind my daughter was allowed to walk with me when I was carrying the torch and she was six months pregnant at the time, so really there were three generations of the one family carrying the torch.

It was inclusive, I was just one other person. I wasn’t any different to anybody else. The lady from Russia just held her torch to mine, lit it and the man from Alloa took the light from my torch and then he went on his way.

When it was the Forth Valley Sensory Centre’s 10th anniversary we made a collage. On one of the squares, a lady helped me to make a replica of the torch, so that’s on the wall here in the Sensory Centre.”

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