As the London Olympics approaches, towns along the torch route are thinking about who would receive the honor of carrying the flame.
In Bournemouth, the people do not want some dignitary or leader of the community. Instead, thousands of fans have launched a campaign to get a tramp to be the one to carry the torch.
Tramp Gordon Roberts is a wall known character in his Dorset home town. Besides his good nature, he is well known for his uncanny ability to know the correct time – without ever carrying a watch.
Gordon, 82, has spent more than 20 years wandering the streets sporting a trademark white beard, football scarf and Parka jacket.
Facebook group have been set up dedicated to making him the town’s official Olympic torch bearer.
They will now nominate Gordon to the London Organising Committee for the Olympic Games (LOCOG) as a worthy candidate for the job.
Campaign organiser Jade Reynolds, 21, from Poole said:
‘Gordon is just the nicest, most genuine man you could ever hope to meet.
‘He’s a great person – he’s always got a happy word to say and everyone loves seeing him.
‘So when we saw an advert for local heroes to carry the Olympic torch, he was the first person who came to mind.
‘We thought we would start the Facebook group to campaign for it and just see how it went.
‘We can’t believe the reaction, it’s been absolutely amazing.’
Looby, a sales assistant, said: 'People like us have grown up with him - he's a big part of the community and always stops to chat to people.
'And he's got a real talent as well.
'A lot of people have been saying they'd rather have someone nice and genuine representing Bournemouth than a snobby person from the town hall in a suit.
'We'd love to see a local hero carrying the Olympic torch and doing us proud.'
When told about the campaign, Gordon said he would be happy to do the job.
'I'd do it but what if it rains? It would be very good fun, very good fun.
'I like sports; I go to watch Bournemouth and the speedway.'
The Olympic Torch Relay will take place around the UK from May 19 to July 27, 2012 with some 8,000 torch bearers carrying the flame for 300 metres each, travelling the length and breadth of the country.
The competition is open to anyone over the age of 12, with places being advertised through official Olympic partners Samsung, Coca Cola and Lloyds.
The applications will then be judged by official body LOCOG, who will pick the most worthy finalists.
A spokeswoman for London 2012 said: 'We are looking for inspirational members of the public from local communities to carry the Olympic torch.
'This could be someone who selflessly helps their neighbours, who volunteers for local charities or a teacher who invests extraordinary time in their school.
'We want to shine a light on communities all over the country and the inspiring people within them.
'The nominations are open to anyone over the age of 12 - we want to celebrate the diversity of our communities.
'They will judged on the merits of their story rather than the number of votes they have.'