Pupils from Duncanrig Secondary School, in East Kilbride have been working hard to report a number of important stories surrounding the London 2012 Olympic Games, including the torch relay on their radio station for a number of partners, including BBC Scotland and a Creative Scotland funded project called Citizen Relay.

Teacher and Duncanrig Radio co-ordinator explains “after two of our pupils were given the opportunity of a lifetime to visit the Olympic Park in London as part of BBC News School Report Day in March to take a tour of the venues and interview London 2012 chairman, Lord Coe about the legacy of the Olympic games, it inspired our presenters to continue reporting some fascinating stories about the Olympic Games.”

S2 pupils, Greg Ross and Alix Aitken, the reporters who visited the Olympic Park, recently got the opportunity to visit the Scottish Parliament to interview Sports Minister, Shona Robison. The young reporters asked her about Scotland’s contribution to the London 2012 Games, the plans for when the Olympic Torch Relay hits Scotland and the Commonwealth Games. Alix explains “it was great to meet Shona and she was really nice. She told us lots of interesting information about the Olympic and Commonwealth Games and she even told us who she nominated for the Olympic Torch Relay.”

Since the Olympic Park trip, the pupils have continued to work with the BBC Scotland by recording a series of weird Olympic facts that will feature on the MacAuley and Co show throughout June. Chris explains “we had been asked by the BBC to write and record a whole series of strange Olympic facts so one can be played on the Fred MacAuley radio show each day in June. I asked a different pupil to record each fact and the pupils had a great time recording and editing them”. The pupils worked closely with BBC producer, Johanna Hall, who also had accompanied Greg and Alix on the Olympic Park trip. Chris continues “Johanna is great with the pupils and she encourages them to produce the audio themselves so when you hear the facts on Radio Scotland, it is all the pupils own work.” The pupils will also be appearing on The MacAuley and Co radio show on Monday 18th June between 10.30am-1pm

The pupils have also had the opportunity to interview local Olympic torch bearer, Mary Finlay and her husband, John who carried the torch through Glasgow on the 8th June. Mary and John were interviewed on the same day as the Duncanrig School Olympics and were invited to take part in the school’s torch relay alongside S2 pupil, Steve, who attends the school’s Communication Support Base. Chris states “Mary was nominated by her husband, John and is a very deserving torch bearer. Despite being wheelchair bound, she is an incredibly positive person and has been campaigning for better restraints for wheelchair bound passengers in moving vehicles for several years so it is great that she has been given this honour. Mary has even promised to bring in the Olympic torch so that Steve and the pupils from the radio station can get the chance to hold it.”

One of the lucky Duncanrig Radio pupils, James Miller got invited along to Capital FM in Glasgow, to interview celebrity torchbearer, Des Clarke. James said “it was great to speak to Des about being a torchbearer as he is such a nice guy and seemed so genuinely excited about carrying the torch through his hometown of Glasgow.”

The pupils from Radio Duncanrig, supported Camglen Radio on 8th June as the Olympic torch passed through Rutherglen main street, the only place in the whole of Lanarkshire the torch travelled through. The pupils were part of an outside radio broadcast to mark the event. Chris adds “Camglen Radio has supported the set up of our radio station from the beginning so it is great that we were able to help support them at such a high profile event.” The pupils broadcast live from the streets of Rutherglen, where the pupils had been given official press passes by LOCOG, speaking to spectators and members of the “Summer of Song” project, a 700 strong choir, funded by Creative Scotland, who sung 2 songs outside Rutherglen main street as the torch passed. Pupils also got to interview Rutherglen MSP, James Kelly and Provost, Eileen Logan. Despite a long day of reporting, Julia says she has had a good day : “I am buzzing after the torch relay, the choir was brilliant as was the fireworks that came from Rutherglen Library”. Alix added “there was an amazing atmosphere as the torch passed.” The material produced was also featured throughout the day on BBC News School Report, check it out here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/schoolreport/17853312

After the events in Rutherglen, Chris Gerard and James Miller moved onto George Square to do some more reporting from the evening celebrations. Here they managed to speak to a whole host of famous faces including Hollywood star, James McAvoy, Olympic Gold medallist, Rhona Martin, singer Emeli Sande, Lord Provost of Glasgow, T in the Park’s Geoff Ellis, Shadow secretary of State for Scotland, Margaret Curran and a host of young torchbearers. James added “I had contacted coca-cola about getting media passes and they told me they would go one further and give me VIP passes, which allowed us to get some great material.” Chris added “James did an amazing job on the night at George Square, beating many of the mainstream organisations to the interviews.”

All the material produced is also being shared by a Creative Scotland funded project called Citizen Relay. This is a project created by researchers at University of West of Scotland to tell all the alternative stories to the torch relay in Scotland by preparing members of the community to become media journalists through using social media. Chris explains “we are delighted to be working closely with Citizen Relay as it is an amazing project as there are some incredible stories behind the Olympic torch bearers and whilst the larger media organisations are tending to focus on the celebrity torch bearers so it is great that there is an outlet for these stories to be heard. What is has been great about the project is it has allowed us to share the amazing content the pupils have produced with as wide an audience as possible but still allowed us to maintain creative control over the content” Chris continued “reporting on the torch has been a once in a lifetime opportunity for the pupils.”

 

You are able to hear all the content on the stations facebook page which is www.facebook.com/duncanrigradio or their mixcloud page which is www.mixcloud.com/radioduncanrig

 



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