Hi, I’m Mandeville, the official mascot for the London 2012 Paralympic Games!
How did I get my name?
My name is inspired by Stoke Mandeville in Buckinghamshire, the birthplace of the Paralympic Games. On the same day as the Opening Ceremony of the London 1948 Olympic Games, Sir Ludwig Guttmann held his own sport competition in Stoke Mandeville for World War II soldiers with spinal injuries. It was no coincidence – Sir Ludwig dreamed of a ‘parallel Olympics’ for athletes with disabilities. The Stoke Mandeville Games grew and grew until they became the Paralympic Games.
My most distinctive features
My eye is a camera lens, capturing everything I see as I go. On my head are three prongs – they represent the three parts of the Paralympic emblem. Like my tail and my hands they’re aerodynamic, which is really important as I’m a ‘spirit in motion’, always rushing around. I’m constantly trying to beat my personal best – the personal best timer on my wrist helps me keep track, as well as making sure I’m focused on London 2012.
I also love the light on my head – inspired by the lights found on London’s iconic black taxis! And it helps me see where I’m going, which is always useful.
A bit more about me
I’ll be honest – I’m on a mission. On a mission to be the best I can possibly be. Because that’s what it’s all about, isn’t it?
There’s nothing I like better than having a go at something new – offer me a challenge and I’ll take it! And if at first I don’t succeed? Well, as they say, I’ll try, try and try again.
There are some amazing people around the UK who are inspiring me to push harder than I ever thought I could – even when the going gets tough. And among those amazing people are the Paralympic athletes I’m meeting. Some people call them ‘athletes with disabilities’. I’m finding out that’s not quite the case – in fact, these are people with an almost superhuman ability.
I’m spending from now until summer 2012 finding out all about Paralympic sport, about all the different types of people in the UK and what links us all together. I’ll be pushing myself to achieve every step of the way. Hope you can keep up!