Britain has the honour of the three Olympics, including the present one. The first one was held in 1908 and the second in 1948, the first after WW-II and after an historic event of the end of the British Empire in the Indian subcontinent in 1947 that resulted into creation of present day India and Pakistan.
While the euphoria is hiking as the London Olympic 2012 is now just days away, here is a London Olympics 1948 Nostalgia, which may remind those who were there in 1948 to watch the proceedings of the previous London Olympics, officially known as the Games of the XIV Olympiad. Wembley stadium was the venue for 22 athletics events at the Games.
|The Olympic Torch [ Photo: The Guardian ]|
A total of 59 nations sent athletes. Fourteen made their first official appearance. It was the first time that the Philippines, India and Pakistan competed as independent nations at the Olympic Games. Germany and Japan, both under Allied military occupations, were not allowed to send athletes to the games. German forced labour was used for the construction of the facilities [Wikipedia]
|King George VI at the opening ceremony of London Olympics 1948|
The opening ceremony was held on 29th July, personally by King George V and the clsoing ceremony was held on 14th august. Atotal of 136 events in 17 major sports field were held during the games.
|The News report [Guardian]|
March of history ... the Australian contingent at the opening ceremony of the 1948 London Olympics at Wembley Stadium. [ Photo: Fairfax Archives / SMH ]
Olympic legend: Fanny Blankers-Koen, known as 'the Flying Housewife', crosses the finish line to win the 200 metres at the 1948 London Olympics. She also won gold in the 100 metres, 80 metres hurdles and 4x100 relay [Photo: The Telegraph]
|The 1948 London Olympics open at Wembley Stadium. The Games return to the city in one year. Photograph: Action Images [The Guardian]|
Marathon men: the runners leave Wembley Stadium at the start of the race — there was no marathon for women
|The Duke of Edinburgh congratulates France’s José Beyaert after he won the cycling road race [Photo: Standard ]|
First Participation in Olympics: Hockey team of Pakistan that participated in London Olympics 1948 just one year after the partition of British India. The team under A I Shah Dara played semi finals against England and lost 2-0, Pakistan then played Holland and lost to take 4th position. [Photo: Pakistan Chronicle / Friday Times ] It was 12 years later at Rome Olympics, that Pakistan Hockey won its first Gold Medal.
|Delfo Cabrera winning the marathon at the 1948 Olympic Games. The photo was on the front page of Clarín, the main Argentine newspaper, on August 14th, 1948 [Photo: Significance Magazine ]|
|Olden day Twitter: Special Post Boxes around Wembley allowed visitors to Games to send postcards to friends and family to boast of their big day out [Photo: V3]|
|To meet the demand for phone lines in 1948, the Post Office set up a a dedicated on-site exchange, called The Corinthian Exchange
The royal Mail issued special postage stamps, bearing head of King George VI, on the eve of the London Olympics 1948 as under:
Stamps photo: Postal Heritage
The London Olympics 2012 are held when the British Queen has just celebrated her golden jubilee on the throne of the United Kingdom - her father King George VI opened the 1948 Olympics, before he died in 1952 and his eldest daughter Elizabeth took over.
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