Mayor & Team London Ambassadors prepare for 'A Summer Like No Other'

16 March 2012

The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, today joined Team London Ambassadors for the first public unveiling of the eye-catching uniforms they will wear when they welcome the world for the Olympic and Paralympic Games this summer.

The Mayor, who met with 30 members of his 8,000 strong volunteer army at Wimbledon station in south London, also revealed one of the brightly coloured Ambassador ‘pods’ from which the welcoming faces of the city will base themselves at more than 40 key locations across the capital.

As part of the city’s ‘Summer Like No Other’ programme the Mayor also announced that a two week public exhibition has been opened at City Hall to give Londoners and visitors to the capital a taste of how London will look and feel during Games time.

The exhibition will feature examples of the colourful dressing and bunting that will be on display throughout the city, plus a number of examples of how high streets and towns will be getting involved with the celebrations.

The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, said: “With their purple shirts and quintessentially British trilby hats there can be no doubt that our Team London Ambassadors will be a highly visible presence during the Games. These volunteers have come on a fantastic journey since we launched the quest to recruit our volunteer army and I am really proud of the public-spirited people we have on board. With just over four months to go Londoners are starting to get a real taste of how London will look and feel during the Games, as well as how we will welcome the world during a summer like no other.”

The volunteers, from across London and beyond, have been through a rigorous selection process which saw more than 30,000 people apply. Aged between 14 and 85, and speaking over 40 languages from Albanian to Vietnamese, they will help visitors to London make the most of their time in the city, giving them a fantastic welcome and helping to promote the vast range of events and activities taking place during the summer.

Among the Team London Ambassadors who met with the Mayor was 78-year-old retired black cab driver Gerry Sheridan from Ilford, who will be volunteering alongside his wife Joan.

He said: "As a 15 year old boy I was lucky enough to attend the 1948 Olympic Games after being given tickets by my school. It was only three years after the Second World War and the Games were something that gave us real encouragement during hard times.

“Having the Games back some 63 years later and being able to welcome people from around the world as a Team London Ambassador makes me feel so proud to be a Londoner.”

Notes to editors

Team London Ambassadors - 8,000 dedicated, enthusiastic and knowledgeable volunteers who are the face of today's London and come from a range of backgrounds and communities.

What will they do? They will welcome the world to London during the Olympic and Paralympic Games, providing advice and guidance to visitors and Londoners as people move around the city at Games time. They will volunteer for a maximum of five hours per shift and up to six consecutive days.

Where will they be based? Around London at one of 43 visitor locations including landmarks, visitor hot spots, travel hubs and big screen live sites - examples are Heathrow Airport, Trafalgar Square, Oxford Street and Wimbledon.

Uniform - includes a polo t-shirt, trousers, jacket and bag. They'll also be wearing trilbys, a classic British trilby hat, which has been received with great enthusiasm by Ambassadors of all ages.

Team London is the Mayor’s ambitious programme to mobilise an army of volunteers across the capital to improve life in London through programmes aimed at reducing crime, increasing youth opportunities and improving quality of life by cleaning and greening London and building stronger neighbourhoods.