The carrying of the Olympic flame always comes with plenty of pomp and circumstance, but once the massive Olympic Cauldron is lit, we usually take for granted that it remains ablaze until the games come to an end. In a rare occurrence, the cauldron at the 2012 London games has been deliberately put out in order to relocate the massive structure to a new part of the stadium, at which point it was relit in a rather casual way.
Olympic organizers moved the flame to a holding lantern while the cauldron was put out and relocated. Once the move was complete, rather than make a big deal out of its lighting once again, the organizers simply grabbed one of the torchbearers, tossed him on a dirty boom lift with a member of the maintenance crew, and had him light it again.
While the cauldron was initially lit by a team of seven young athletes, such an event wasn't staged for the relighting. This time around a man named Austin Playfoot did it solo. Playfoot bore the torch during the flame's trip to London this year, and also had the honor of being a torchbearer during the 1948 Olympics.
This unscheduled move is just the latest in what has been a rather interesting saga surrounding London's Olympic flame. It started when one of the torches carrying the flame went out due to a malfunctioning burner on its way through the host country and had to be relit by a backup unit. Then, the cauldron's placement came under harsh criticism due to its position within a stadium, and could only be seen by those with tickets to the opening ceremony.
[Image credit: eageriseager]
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