Worldwide interest in Plymouth College after Olympic glories
AN INDEPENDENT school boasting two Olympic medalists has seen "phenomenal" interest from around the world following the London Games.
Plymouth College said it has seen an increase in interest from both perspective pupils and the media after two of its students secured Olympic medals.
Diving star Tom Daley took bronze in the 10m men's platform event, while 15-year-old Lithuanian swimmer Ruta Meilutyte stormed to gold in the women's 100m breaststroke.
Dr Simon Wormleighton, headmaster at the school, said: "The interest in Plymouth College since Ruta and Tom won Olympic medals has been phenomenal.
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"While we have seen some increase in enquiries from prospective pupils it is the interest in the school generally that has taken us by surprise.
"Our monthly website visits in July were four times more than normal and people around the world are engaging with us via Twitter and Facebook.
"The fact that Ruta and Tom live in the same city and attend the same school has really caught the media's interest around the world and put a truly global focus on the whole community."
A spokesperson for the school told The Herald that their website, which usually receives about 4,500 hits a month, received in excess of 20,000 in July when Ruta was competing.
The school's Twitter page, which had only around 60 followers before the Olympic Games, saw that number rise to more than 1,200 after Ruta made it to the final, the spokesperson said.
"The school also received a great amount of media coverage as a result of the Olympics. We usually have between 50 and 60 media articles about us making it global every month, but in July we had 478 articles which appeared online around the world," said the spokesperson.
"While the focus has very much turned to the school, it has also been on Plymouth as a city too – it's put Plymouth on the map."