Updated: Wednesday, 22nd November 2017 @ 5:30pm

Sir Chris Hoy leads Olympian charge into Manchester as thousands expected to cheer on London 2012 golden heroes

Sir Chris Hoy leads Olympian charge into Manchester as thousands expected to cheer on London 2012 golden heroes

By Dean Wilkins

Sir Chris Hoy is pedalling the way for Great Britain’s Olympic and Paralympic heroes as Manchester prepares to host the country’s elite athletes.

Cycling superstars Sir Chris, Laura Trott and Sarah Storey will join taekwondo ace Jade Jones alongside coaches, London 2012 volunteers and torchbearers who will be honoured for powering Manchester to eighth in the overall medal table.

Greater Manchester-based athletes grabbed nine Olympic and 16 Paralympic golds in a remarkable Games for the country – nearly 600,000 people watched the events in Exchange Square’s Live Site, 370,000 watched matches at Old Trafford.

Councillor Rosa Battle, Executive Member for Culture and Leisure, said: "The achievements of Manchester-based Olympians and Paralympians this year were incredible. It's no exaggeration to say that Team Manchester was at the heart of Team GB's gold rush, and that London 2012 would not have been the triumph it was without Manchester.

"This is our chance as a city to re-live and celebrate those achievements in what promises to be a memorable and atmospheric event.

"It's also an opportunity to pay tribute to those other Mancunians who made the Games such a great success – whether as torch-bearers, coaches or volunteers.”

Celebrations will take place in Albert Square from 5pm to 6.30pm this Friday and will be compered by BBC commentator and former Olympian Paul Dickenson.

Thousands are expected to hit the streets and cheer on the country’s sporting icons and Councillor Battle is urging the public to come out in force.

"Let's send out a resounding message about how proud we are of our great city's contribution to a golden summer of sport,” she added.

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