COLCHESTER can show the world what it is made of when the Olympic flame comes to town.

That’s the message from organisers, who revealed the 3.3-mile route the torch will travel when it arrives in Colchester on Friday, July 6.

Tina Dopson, Colchester councillor with responsibility for the Olympic Games, said she wanted people of all generations to line the streets.

She said: “I hope, particularly, young people can get involved in an event they will probably never witness again.

“We can line the streets with thousands of spectators – individuals, schools and charity groups.”

After travelling down the A12 from Ipswich, where it will spend the previous night, a convoy of the organising committee and the Metropolitan Police will reach the top of Ipswich Road around 7.30am.

Thirteen torchbearers will then carry the flame, around 300 metres each, down Ipswich Road, along East Street, up East Hill, along the High Street and down North Hill.

It will then turn on to Middleborough before rejoining a convoy around 8.15am. It will then travel on to a host of other Essex towns and villages before arriving in Chelmsford that evening for another overnight stop.

Mrs Dopson told a gathering of sports club representatives, business leaders and headteachers at Colchester town hall a series of events – including live music, arts and crafts and sporting activities – was being drawn up with the support of local clubs to coincide with the arrival of the torch.

Local sports stars spoke of their enthusiasm for the torch procession, which reaches the town three weeks before the opening ceremony on July 27.

Daniel King, a race-walker who is one of Colchester’s Olympic Champions, said: “It’s a fantastic opportunity for Colchester to show itself off to the world. I understand that wherever the route goes there’s going to be live coverage, so it’s not just people in this country that will see us, but people from all over the world.”

Sailor Hannah Stodel, 26, will represent Team GB at the Paralympic Games and said while she would be in a competition when the flame arrived in Colchester, her family would probably be cheering the torchbearers on.

Among those waving banners on the morning will be thousands of schoolchildren.

Cherry Tree Primary headteacher Ed Constantine said it was likely parents would be allowed to take their youngsters to watch the procession before lessons.

As the torchbearer walks, runs or jogs down Ipswich Road from around 7.30am, traffic will pass on the northbound lane, which is set to remain open.

Gareth Mitchell, head of life opportunities at Colchester Council, said: “The torch convoy has to travel around most of the rest of the county during the day.

“We’re anticipating up to 30 minutes in terms of the closure of the High Street and we will open it up very quickly.”

There will be few opportunities for anyone to accompany the chosen torchbearers along the heavily sponsored procession, the launch was told.

But organisers stressed they want the streets lined with people of all ages carrying banners, and anything colourful to help create a buzz.

The route torchbearers will take for half a mile through Hatfield Peverel has been announced.

After being carried through Colchester, the flame will be brought down the A12 to begin its procession through the village at about 8.30am.

It will be carried by three torchbearers down The Street, before turning left into Maldon Road and finishing at the Village Green at about 9am.

The torch will tour 17 towns and villages in Essex between July 6 and 7 and the county council is planning to host an event in Chelmsford.