Virgin Media’s cabinets turn gold in Stoke Mandeville to celebrate ParalympicsGB

Virgin Media has painted broadband cabinets gold in Stoke Mandeville to celebrate the achievements of ParalympicsGB in Tokyo

Friday, 10th September 2021, 11:53 am
Updated Friday, 10th September 2021, 11:54 am

Virgin Media has painted broadband cabinets gold in Stoke Mandeville - the birthplace of the Paralympic movement - to celebrate the achievements of ParalympicsGB at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games.

Proud partners of ParalympicsGB, Virgin Media whipped up support in the UK with its #WeAreHere campaign which encouraged the nation to cheer on our incredible Paralympians as no fans, friends, family or loved ones could travel to Japan to watch the Games in person.

ParalympicsGB racked up a staggering 124 medals, taking second place in the overall medals table and winning medals in more sports than any nation has ever achieved at Paralympic Games.

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(L-R) Jody Cundy OBE, Phoebe Paterson Pine, Ali Jawad, Stef Reid MBE and Tom Hamer alongside Virgin Media's Stoke Mandeville gold cabinets (C) Matt Alexander at Press Association

To recognise ParalympicsGB’s success at the Games, Virgin Media has given its on-street cabinets in Stoke Mandeville a golden upgrade.

The golden cabinets can be found on Harvey Road and Mandeville Road, nearby to Stoke Mandeville Stadium – which is regarded as the home of wheelchair sport and the birthplace of the Paralympic Games which began in 1948.

Virgin Media held a special event to mark the occasion in Stoke Mandeville with ParalympicsGB athletes Jody Cundy OBE, Phoebe Paterson Pine, Stef Reid MBE, Ali Jawad and Tom Hamer who had just returned from Tokyo.

The athletes unveiled the gold cabinet after helping to apply the final touches of gold paint.

Jody Cundy OBE at Booker Park School (C) Matt Alexander at Press Association

ParalympicsGB athlete Jody Cundy OBE, who won a Gold and Silver medal in Para Cycling attended the unveiling of the cabinet, said: “It’s a real honour that Virgin Media has recognised the achievements of ParalympicsGB in this way and it’s been so great to meet aspiring young children in Stoke Mandeville who might go on to be the next generation of medallists!

"The support of fans back at home meant so much to all athletes taking part in Tokyo and definitely spurred us all on to perform at our very best.”

Simon Groves, director of brand and marketing at Virgin Media O2, said: "As proud partners of ParalympicsGB, we've been blown away by the team's incredible medal-winning success in Tokyo.

"As well as supporting our Paralympians with our #WeAreHere campaign, we've given our cabinets the golden touch to mark the team's amazing achievement at the Games.

Phoebe Paterson Pine and Jody Cundy OBE with medals at Virgin Media's gold cabinets (C) Matt Alexander at Press Association

"Our cabinets are placed at the heart of communities across the UK and we hope that residents in Stoke Mandeville join us in welcoming ParalympicsGB home.”

Mike Sharrock, chief executive of ParalympicsGB, said: “ParalympicsGB rewrote the record books at Tokyo 2020 with countless incredible performances to inspire and unite the nation.

"Painting these cabinets gold is a fitting tribute to the excellence and resilience of the athletes who competed in Tokyo and a wonderful way for the British public to have a lasting reminder of what they achieved.

"Tokyo 2020 was the most complex Games we have ever been involved in but also one that demonstrated the incredible impact these athletes can have in challenging perceptions of disability and proving that they truly are Impossible to Ignore.”

Stef Reid MBE at Booker Park School (C) Matt Alexander at Press Association

The ParalympicsGB athletes also held a special PE lesson at nearby Booker Park school, in Aylesbury, giving children top tips on how to become Paralympians of the future, as well as sharing their experiences of the Games in Tokyo.

Martin Tett, Leader of Buckinghamshire Council, said: “Buckinghamshire is the birthplace of the worldwide Paralympic movement so what better place to celebrate the amazing achievements of our Paralympians at Tokyo than here at Stoke Mandeville - where it all began.

"Just as our Paralympians strive for excellence - to go faster and go further - that is our ambition for superfast broadband across Buckinghamshire.

"Virgin Media is part of that ambition - rolling out superfast speeds of 1gig per second which will transform the digital lives of 22,000 people in Buckinghamshire.”