ONE highlight for onlookers was the moment when Olympic legend Seb Coe took the flame, bearing his torch aloft as he was cheered through Arundel Gate in his home city.
It will no doubt have been special too for Lord Coe, who has admitted: “I was made in Sheffield and proud of it.”
Earlier in the day he paid a surprise visit to Tapton secondary school at Ranmoor, where he was a pupil some four decades ago.
Accompanied by his old PE teacher, John O’Keeffe, he joined in sports day celebrations with students from Tapton and its feeder primaries, Lydgate, Hallam and Netherthorpe.
Lord Coe, chairman of London 2012, admitted that he was thrilled to be with the flame in Sheffield.
“To me personally this is a massive day because it’s the city I was brought up in,” he said. “Everything that really mattered in my athletics career took place in this city.
“My coaches, my local athletics club, my inspiration to even join the athletics club was from two competitors in this city – John and Sheila Sherwood, who won medals in the 1968 Olympic Games.”
He added: “The flame symbolises the Olympic spirit and its journey around the UK is bringing the excitement of the games to our streets.
“This is Sheffield’s moment to shine.”
Headteacher David Bowes described the visit as a “great honour” and said: “We are very proud of Seb as a former Tapton student and it is great for him to return and share the Olympic message with us all.”