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18 Jul 2012

A special place for some special items

The Olympic medals are under lock and key next to the Crown Jewels

The gold, silver and bronze medals that will be draped around the neck of winning athletes will be kept inside the Tower of London for the 805 award ceremonies scheduled to take place at over thirty Olympic sports venues across the whole UK. The mining company Rio Tinto provided eight tonnes of gold, silver and bronze extracted from the mine Kennecott Utah Copper of Salt Lake City,  United States, and the mine Oyu Tolgoi, Mongolia, to produce the 4,700 medals. The medals were crafted at the Royal Mint in South Wales. Minister for Sport and the Olympics, Hugh Robertson said: "For the athletes competing to win these medals, they are as precious as the Crown Jewels, so it is fitting that they should be stored for safe keeping in the same iconic location". Circular in shape, to represent the globe, the summer Olympic medals feature the Greek goddess of victory, Nike, on the front, as she steps out of the Parthenon to reach the host city. The front of the Paralympic medals represents "spirit in motion".