Photo of Sean Nicole Cooke's cousin copyright Paul Thomas 2008Today was a great day for Wales in Cardiff Bay – the return of the Wales Olympic gold medal winners Nicole Cooke, Tom James and Geraint Thomas and silver medal winner David Davies.

I must admit that I have a bit of a soft spot for Nicole Cooke since she comes from close to where I live.  She’s from Wick in the Vale of Glamorgan.  The welcoming crowd in Cardiff Bay today seemed to agree – the biggest cheer was saved for Nicole though the organisers had arranged for her to be presented to the crowd last of all.

The photo at the top is of Nicole’s cousin Sean who came down to Cardiff to welcome her.

Photo of Welsh Medal winners copyright Paul Thomas 2008All of the medal winners appeared to thoroughly enjoy the occasion though Nicole appeared to have the biggest smile!!!

The thing that impressed me most was the down to earth attitude of Nicole’s family.  Her father Tony had the opportunity of being up front with the “bigwigs” but he preferred to be down in the crowd savouring the atmosphere.

Photo of Nicole Cooke's family copyright Paul Thomas 2008The third photo shows Nicole’s family welcoming the Medal winner’s bus as it came around the front of the Atradius building towards the Senedd building.

Photo of Nicole Cooke copyright Paul Thomas 2008There was a huge crowd at the event – the police estimated a crowd of 2,000 – more people that I’ve seen an an event at the Welsh Assembly since the opening of the Welsh Assembly in 1999.

The only shame was the weather – it was cold and damp again.  But the weather didn’t appear to dampen the atmosphere and the celebration of “our” team’s great achievement.  Well done!!!!

Click on any of the photos for a larger view.

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