Mapping the story behind Wenlock and Mandeville

Providing PhotoRoute maps of the Discovery Trails was Enabled city’s second commission from the Greater London Authority’s 2012 Unit.
The Discovery Trails are walks designed to take Olympic and Paralympic visitors around the different parts of London and experience everything that our city has to offer. Each trail takes you to some iconic sights and attractions with the added bonus of havingOlympic Mascotts Wenlock and Mandeville being dotted along the routes.

Figures of Wenlock and Mandeville have been placed along the routes in wonderful designs representing British icons appropriate to where they have been placed. The Olympic mascots never looked more alive and full of personality against the sadly still rather grey London sky. We are very excited to be almost ready to unveil our routes of the Discovery Trails so that you can all start exploring London. Here’s a little bit of the history behind the mascots from the BBC:

“The characters are named after the small town of Much Wenlock in Shropshire – which hosted a precursor to the modern Olympic Games in the 19th Century – and the birthplace of the Paralympic Games, Stoke Mandeville hospital in Buckinghamshire.”

“Olympic motifs chime through the design: Wenlock wears the Olympic rings as friendship bracelets, and although predominantly silver in colour, also contains flashes of gold and bronze.
Mandeville’s head reflects aspects of the three crescent shapes of the Paralympics symbol.
In a deliberate homage to London taxis, each has a yellow light on top of its head, with an initial in the middle.”

“In author Morpurgo’s vision, the pair begin life as two drops of steel from a factory in Bolton, taken home by a retiring worker who fashions characters out of the metal for his grandchildren.
They appear to have a single central eye, explained as a camera lens, through which they’ll see the world, and respond to it.”
Gordon Farquhar, BBC London News

The mascots are designed with children in mind and the story behind them is intended to make them easier to interact with and more engaging for children. Children have seen the mascots learn to play the different Olympic sports in a series of animated updates which have brought them to life and made them Olympic icons which will hopefully be remembered for years to come.

See other PhotoRoute articles.