What do we want from an Olympic legacy?

Baroness Valentine

Lord Harris of Haringey is currently conducting an inquiry into the Olympic legacy (The Committee on Olympic and Paralympic legacy). I suspect we all have very different ideas of what a good legacy would look like.

The Government of course has come out one year on with some (difficult to substantiate or disprove) statistics proving that we’ve already made our money back. But many benefits are intangible; the inspiration to take up sport, the inspiration to East Londoners, attitudes to disability, the attitudes of those who visited the UK and the possibility that one of those visitors will at some future time invest in the UK.

But for me, the most important legacy of the Olympics is the belief in ourselves; we can do it if we try.

The regeneration of the Olympic park in the timescale was an amazing feat. At peak construction there were about 200 different worksites. Lorries were arriving on the site every two minutes, each of which needed to be security checked and frequently took a new route to their worksite as the roads on site were moved around to accommodate building. Many of the architects, builders, consultants and engineers on site were British; companies which work worldwide but came back to Britain to build the park.

And National, London and local government all rose to the challenge. They all had to find a different way of operating (think about all the planning permissions and the traffic management) in order to hit the deadline. Long may that commitment and innovation continue.

Finally, of course, we won medals. And Andy Murray went on to win Wimbledon. Surely he is a great example of how we can do it if we try.

6 comments for “What do we want from an Olympic legacy?

  1. 02/08/2013 at 1:21 pm

    I never doubted that the country could put on a successful Olympics. We can do anything if we have money to throw at it. Local authorities managed to cope with the traffic for the games, but they don’t manage to fix potholes in the road. That’s not because we don’t have the skilled people to repair roads, but because there isn’t the money to repair them in a timely manner.

  2. MilesJSD
    03/08/2013 at 12:09 am

    The 60 million ‘strong’ British People need neither to abrogate their basic holistic health building needs to some mere 6000 expensively super-fit flag-waving Olympic gold-glinting-medals coveting champions
    posing as
    “we-all-of-us-60-million-gallantly-competitive-British-People collectively winning medals”,

    nor to be so sugar-smoothly conned by such “Let’s You and Them Fight” keynote psych-up speeches, baroness:
    “Finally of course ‘we’ won medals. And Andy Murray went on to win Wimbledon. Surely he is a great example of how ‘we’ can do it if we try”.

    No, baroness, he is not,
    neither are any other super-financed, equipped and carefully-trained “experts and national-leaders” anywhere near becoming emulable examples;

    because what We-People-Millions need are affordable and immediate-term sustainworthy holistic health foundations,
    extended into longest-term further refinement;
    namely for all-round daily healthy-living,
    and at both affordable-costs
    and with successively self-improving results structuring,
    and yes on a 24/7/52/lifespan cooperatively participatory basis

    rather than for international-tourist-bubbling, cheering-crowds-pleasings, and gate-money coffers fattenings,
    once-every-four-years in small-minority limited-access arenas, sensationally-displaying and emotionally-aggrandising…,

    [actually “we” are reported as showing a longterm as well as short term Loss, over the Costs–versus-Benefits of “Our Olympic Games Triumph”,
    aren’t we ?].

    [And the potholes in roads, they’re actually caused by heavy industrial traffic, as jack-hammer extensions of factory-production-lines,
    not by cars or bicycles which only chip away at the holes once the heavies have busted-through the surface]

  3. Lord Blagger
    05/08/2013 at 11:30 am

    How about a profit?

    Er, where are the accounts of the Olympics?

    If we were to know about the real legacy, which is billions of debt as a result of fraud an incompetence, MPs and Peers (heavily involved) would be brought in disrepute.

    Here’s the scam. Say it will cost 2 billion. Get the games. Now get on the gravy train. Then start adding in all the things you ‘forgot’ for the estimates. That’s how you get the cash out.

  4. Bumble Bee
    06/08/2013 at 3:52 pm

    I am glad to say that I gave up watching TV
    a few months before the games began. I know nothing whatesoever about the olympic games 2012. I have watched previous games enthusiastically, and known sone of the gold medal winners too, since I was a 12 year old.

    Murray’s Tennis championship was a fine achievement for a Brit, not really being a British game any more. Perhaps if he could win the Real Tennis world championships he would be a finer player still.

  5. maude elwes
    13/08/2013 at 2:11 pm

    The Olympic idiocy is another ‘rob’ the tax payer game, to keep the Corporate rich in gravy. The vendors of junk colas and fast food and any other dross scam they wish to push is all done for them, free, by the BBC and any other news station willing to bombard us with the pungent smell of sweat and exploitation for freebie airtime.

    The Olympics we had was a con. And who did it make money for. Not the locals, it cost them a fortune. It was the big boys. Globalized corporations and pussy petters, the kind you see in Goldfinger. They are the ones outdoing themselves in the take home pay stakes not the average UK boss.

  6. Lord Blagger
    14/08/2013 at 11:37 am

    Where are the accounts?

    Amount spent. Money received. Debts run up.

    Ah yes.

    The disreputable peers to use the Clerk of Parliament’s view of them (mods – the excuse used by him one of many state secrecy certificates), won’t tell you. MPs won’t tell you.

    They are running up debts, and then they will run away.

Comments are closed.