THE Olympic torch will be sailed across Windermere on a cruise ship next summer, the 2012 Games organisers have revealed.

The journey on Thursday, June 21, will be part of the round-Britain tour of the famous emblem.

Children waved flags on the shores of Windermere this week to mark the announcement.

The flame will be in Appleby on Wednesday, June 20, before travelling to Grasmere, Ambleside and Bowness the next day.

On Friday, June 22, it will continue through Kendal and Milnthorpe, before heading south into Carnforth, Bolton-le-Sands and Hest Bank, in north Lancashire.

South Lakeland District Council leader Brendan Jameson, chief executive Lawrence Conway and chairman of Windermere Lake Cruises Bill Bewley joined scores of children on a boat ride from Waterhead Pier, in Ambleside, to celebrate the plans.

Westmorland and Lonsdale MP Tim Farron said the flame’s five stops in South Lakeland would be a great coup for tourism.

“Compared to Beijing, the Lake District is only next door to the London Olympics.

"I’m sure having the torch visit here will get people excited about the Games and it should be a boost for local trade.”

South Lakeland district councillor Ben Berry, who represents Windermere, Applethwaite and Troutbeck, said the route had been kept secret.

“Now, it’s been announced we have to make sure the event will create lasting benefits for the area,” he added.

Ellie Maplethorpe, 10, of Heron Hill Primary School, at Kendal, said: “I’m captain of my football team and I really love sport so I’m really looking forward to having some of the Olympic celebrations here.”

Classmate Sam Tattersall, 10, added: “I love sport too, football, golf, cricket, fishing and taekwondo. It’s great to get the torch here.”

Oliver Gajdowski, 11, of Ambleside Primary, said: “I’m definitely excited about the Olympic torch coming here.”