The event, attended by over 150 guests including Loughborough Olympians and Paralympians alongside senior figures in sport, was held to recognise the unique involvement the University played in the 2012 Games.
Lord Coe, a graduate and Pro Chancellor of the University, was interviewed on stage by broadcaster John Inverdale, and spoke about his London 2012 experiences and his time as a Loughborough student.
John Inverdale also invited Olympic medal winning athletes – canoeist Liam Heath, hockey players Hannah MacLeod, Nicola White and Laura Unsworth, with Paralympians swimmer Emma Hollis and cyclist Crystal Lane – to share with the audience what it was like to compete at a ‘home’ Games.
Speaking at the event Professor Bob Allison, Vice Chancellor of Loughborough University said:
“It is a pleasure to be gathered here to celebrate Loughborough’s involvement and successes with the extraordinary events of the past summer. It is clear that Great Britain had an outstanding performance in the London 2012 Games and I am proud of the part that Loughborough has played in that.”
The event was kindly hosted by the Thomas family that originates from Loughborough and recently took ownership of the London Hippodrome.
Simon Thomas, Chairman of the London Hippodrome said:
“As a Loughborough man born and bred it was a privilege to host the event at the Hippodrome, a venue whose history spans the entire history of the modern Olympics.
“Digging deep into the history of the building, the Hippodrome was also the birthplace of synchronised swimming when a venue for circus spectacles. Given its reincarnation into what is now the country’s busiest casino, this brought a smile to the faces of those who attended.”
The event also included fundraising activities for the Loughborough Sports Scholarships Fund that offers financial support to student-athletes. The fund has in the past supported Olympic athletes such as Lisa Dobriskey and Liam Tancock.
The fundraising included a silent auction, with lots including Olympic memorabilia signed by Lord Coe and Jessica Ennis, packages for big sporting events and opportunities to train with Olympic athletes. So far the fundraising activities have raised over £8,000, which equates to several new sports scholarships for this year.