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      The Olympics 2012

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      • Guest
      Re: The Olympics 2012
      Reply #575: Aug 15, 2012 04:56:16 pm
      The Spice Girls made my ears bleed...;D

      Not good were they  :roll:
      PG LFC
      • Forum Peter Beardsley
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      • JFT96
      Re: The Olympics 2012
      Reply #576: Aug 15, 2012 08:12:17 pm
      No they just screamed :(
      • Forum Legend - Benitez
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      Re: The Olympics 2012
      Reply #577: Aug 15, 2012 11:25:23 pm

      Some things never change do they ;D
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      Re: The Olympics 2012
      Reply #578: Aug 16, 2012 12:18:04 am
      The Spice Girls made my ears bleed...;D

      Thankfully, I missed the bit when they were on.  ;D
      Frankly, Mr Shankly
      • Guest
      Re: The Olympics 2012
      Reply #579: Sep 10, 2012 10:18:53 pm
      Olympics 2012 parade: One last hurrah and then, like the summer, it was all over too soon

      One last hurrah echoed through the capital and the nation, then, like that great British summer of sport, it was all over too soon .

      By Bryony Gordon

      And so, for one last time, the wall of noise that has come to define these Games swept through London.

      It started at Mansion House, the 30-deep crowd erupting as soon as they glimpsed the Mobot on the first of 21 floats packed with Olympians and Paralympians. It carried on past St Paul’s, where spectators swooned at Jessica Ennis and David Weir, and it flowed down Fleet Street, cheers ringing out every time Ellie Simmonds smiled.

      Onwards the roar went, past the Royal Courts of Justice and along a Strand swollen with families and gamesmakers and office workers who had popped out for sandwiches and instead encountered Sarah Storey. Even tourists had joined in the celebration.

      Near Trafalgar Square, where the wall of noise originated just over seven years ago on that historic day that it was announced that the 2012 Games were ours, all ours, it came full circle. The clock that counted down the agonisingly long months and weeks until the start of the London Olympics now simply – sadly – told us the time and the date, the whole thing over too soon.

      The great British public swarmed around the plinths and Nelson’s Column and watched as almost 800 members of our greatest team passed through Admiralty Arch and on to The Mall, where 14,000 volunteers and schoolchildren, specially invited by the Mayor’s office, whooped with delight as the likes of Greg Rutherford and Tom Daley held up handwritten signs that proclaimed: “No, thank YOU!”

      The sound wasn’t as fast as it was in the Velodrome, or as urgent as it was in the Olympic Stadium – it took over an hour and a half for the 21-float procession to travel the three miles of the Victory Parade, which is slow, even by London rush hour standards – but it was far more poignant.

      Because, as the athletes disembarked from their floats and on to the Queen Victoria Memorial, we heard that now familiar roar for the final time. London may have seen celebrations before – in the last 18 months alone we have been treated to the royal wedding and the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee – but it has never experienced one quite like this.

       David Cameron described it as “a great British summer that will be remembered for hundreds of years to come”, and even if the Prime Minister is relegated to the footnotes of the history books, at least these words might stand a chance of being repeated by generation after generation, when they speak of the great London Olympics of 2012.

      Cameron and Boris Johnson waved as enthusiastically at the floats as everyone else. “You not only inspired a generation,” Boris would later tell the athletes, “but you probably helped create one as well.”

      On the Queen Victoria Memorial, where the athletes stood in bitter autumnal wind, the mayor acknowledged that they had been sporting in more ways than one. “You have been on floats all afternoon without being able to touch a drop of beer,” he said, to laughs. “You brought this country together. You routed the doubters and you scattered the gloomsters

      for the first time in living memory, you caused Tube passengers to break into spontaneous conversation about subjects other than their trod-on toes.”

      And though you might think that the athletes would be used to adoring crowds by now, they still seemed overwhelmed by all the attention from the million-strong assembly.

      Victoria Pendleton, retiring from cycling and soon to be seen on Strictly Come Dancing, said that the day had been “emotional”. “It makes me feel so proud to be British. We did such a good job of hosting the Games.”

      Sir Chris Hoy said he had taken “a whole battery’s worth of pictures on my iPhone … after the Beijing Olympics we had a pretty good reception, a pretty exceptional reception, but this is on a different scale. There are people hanging off the tops of roofs, out of windows and climbing lamp posts. It’s just a sea of red, white and blue. It’s incredible.”

      A flypast featured the Red Arrows who were led by Firefly, the gold BA airliner that had transported the Olympic flame to Britain all those months ago.

       Yesterday the words 'THANK YOU’ had been painted on its undercarriage, for all of London to see. And that was important to the athletes, who didn’t want this parade to simply be a celebration of their achievements, however wonderful they were. They wanted it to be a way of expressing gratitude to the public, from the thousands of gamesmakers lining the Mall to the office workers back at Mansion House.

      “We want to thank every single person of the UK,” said Sarah Storey, “Without your support, we wouldn’t have been able to bring back that bling.” Sir Chris Hoy said that the parade “isn’t about us – it’s about the public.” But it was Katherine Grainger, veteran of four Olympic games, who summed up the mood of our greatest team. “On days like today,” she smiled, “you realise you’re not simply celebrating the British team. You realise you are celebrating the whole nation.”

      On the Queen Victoria Memorial, performances were given by the Pet Shop Boys and the scottish singer Amy Macdonald. It was rumoured that Cheryl Cole was the standby should any of the artists pull out.

       But standing there, you wondered why any of them were needed in the first place. Given the magic of the opening and closing ceremonies, and the wonder of the last six weeks – the athletes, Paralympians, volunteers and public locked in an emotional embrace that no one wanted to end – it was unlikely anybody had turned up to the Victory parade to hear pop music.

      And yet the last words of the Olympics and Paralympics went to an indie band called the Noisettes, who performed on the memorial as streamers flew through the sky. And then the crowds drifted away, the wall of noise nothing but ringing in their ears.

      Lovely article. The unforgettable summer.
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      Re: The Olympics 2012
      Reply #580: Oct 10, 2012 08:40:15 pm
      The man in charge of the Olympic Park's next incarnation
      Dennis Hone, interim chief executive of the London Legacy Development Corporation, on the future of the Olympic Park

      The Spanish basketball team "trashed their apartments" after losing to the USA in the final and a Moroccan athlete took out a sprinkler system that crashed through several floors by playing with a remote control aircraft.

      But, all in all, London got away lightly in terms of damage to the Athletes Village traditionally incurred by host Olympic cities, according to the man responsible for putting it right.

      The Olympic Delivery Authority still has to complete £150m worth of work on the Olympic Village to make the apartments ready to be handed over to developers Qatari Diar and Delancey. But it is the London Legacy Development Corporation, of which the ODA chief executive, Dennis Hone, is also interim chief executive, that is taking up most of his time.

      Chiefly, the knotty question of what to do about the Olympic Stadium, amid ongoing negotiations with West Ham over the cost of the modifications the football club require. While football would attract large crowds on a regular basis, Hone said that, aside from the stadium conversion, there were also attendant costs in terms of the stewarding and transport considerations.

      "We've had discussions with all of the bidders. The difficulty is that we're balancing the adaptations we have to make to the stadium against the proposals that have come in and the benefits – financial and otherwise – that those proposals bring. If it was a knockout [verdict] it would be an easy decision, but it's not," said Hone.

      The decision, which has already been subject to endless delays, could now be put back beyond the deadline of the end of the month. Once the main tenants have been decided, a stadium operator will be appointed to manage a programme of concerts and other sporting events around the 20 days of athletics and community use already guaranteed.

      Some at City Hall believe that, with the already iconic stadium having proved its worth as a concert and sporting venue during the Olympics, the LLDC should press on without football. But others, including the London mayor, Boris Johnson, believe that West Ham still offer the most sustainable long-term solution while wanting to ensure that the deal is beneficial to taxpayers.

      Hone, dismissed West Ham's concerns that the stadium would not feel like their own. "You've got Milan and Inter. You've got Lazio and Roma," he said. "They can dress the stadium between games so that everyone feels like it's their home ground. That's absolutely doable."

      But aside from that pressing issue, which has dogged discussions about the Olympic legacy since before the bid was made, Hone is keen to emphasise the progress that has been made in planning for the future of a Park through which more than 10m ticketholders passed during both Games.

      Hone was parachuted in as the chief executive of the LLDC following the controversial ousting of his predecessor, Andrew Altman, who together with the former chair, Margaret Ford, conceived the 20-year masterplan on which the development is based.

      Daniel Moylan, who removed Altman and appointed Hone, has after a matter of months himself been given a new job overseeing the mayor's aviation policy, while Johnson has taken on the chairman's role.

      Hone defends the changes by saying the organisation is moving into delivery mode, as it seeks to ensure the north of the Park, which contains the velodrome, reopens by 27 July next year and the more urban south plaza, which contains the stadium, is next the following summer.

      "The organisation is moving from a phase of planning to one of delivery. You've got £300m of transformational works, you've got park opening dates you really need to hit, you're moving into coordination of events mode," said Hone, who is expected to be appointed on a full-time basis in due course.

      "If I'm appointed as permanent chief executive, there'll be some changes. But the last thing I'm going to do is wholesale change to an organisation that has been relatively successful and probably underappreciated."

      The understated Hone is already planning the works that will remove the main Stratford Gate bridge, across which millions of people streamed during the Games, so that the cranes can move in and begin dismantling the temporary stands either side of Zaha Hadid's Aquatics Centre.

      Hone insists that the Park, which will eventually contain 8,000 houses, will have sport at its heart in much the same way as the 1951 Festival of Britain left behind a cultural legacy on London's South Bank.

      "This is the Olympics so the legacy has to be sport. We want a full offer of different things but sport has got to be one of the key things. At Eton Manor you'll have hockey, tennis and football. You've got four forms of cycling, you've got the multi-use arena, you've got the Aquatics Centre coming on-stream," said Hone. "Then you've got the stadium. The primary offer is sport. That covers all ages and all abilities, from elite athletes to disability sport and those people we want to inspire to get off their sofa."

      The LLDC, which will meet next week to try to edge the stadium saga closer to a conclusion, has found permanent tenants for seven of the eight venues on the Park, which will be called the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.

      "When we open next year, the Mayor might give the impression it will be like Disney. It won't be, it will be much more about events on the Park, such as [the cycling festival] RideLondon. I want to get the message out there that the Park will unfold in stages," said Hone. "The north area of the Park is a much more tranquil area and my worry is that everyone will expect it to be like the Olympics every day. That was a once-in-a-lifetime period."

      Hone insists that, despite the difficult decision over the stadium bequeathed him by his predecessors and caused by a lack of foresight at the beginning of the process, he was happy with the "route map" that had been left behind.

      "It would be terrible if you didn't have a route map and didn't have a plan. We do. We have to be open-minded, just like any other quarter of London. We want to have the flexibility for new things to happen. London is never finished, it never will be."

      Venue vexation

      West Ham United

      Ever since it was decided to reopen the case for leaving the stadium at its full 60,000-seat capacity after the Games, many have considered West Ham the natural tenants. Already denied once by a welter of legal challenges, the club remain convinced that they are the only economically viable option. But the devil is in the detail and there is a hardening determination on the board to ensure West Ham contribute to the possible £160m-plus conversion costs if they continue to insist on retractable seats and a full roof to cover them.

      Verdict Still the most likely outcome, but no longer a shoo-in.

      Intelligent Transport Services

      An ambitious scheme to bring Formula One racing to the Olympic Park dreamed up by three businessmen with the tacit approval of Bernie Ecclestone. But there remain serious logistical concerns over the bid, and Ecclestone's appetite appears to have cooled as he concentrates on lobbying for a central London Grand Prix.

      Verdict Unlikely

      UCFB College of Football Business

      A partnership between Burnley Football Club and the University of Buckinghamshire. It plans to retain a base in Burnley but would look to attract UK and international students to London as well.

      Verdict There appears to be no reason why it should not be included in the overall plans, as long as it dovetails with other bids.

      Leyton Orient

      Chairman Barry Hearn has by turns been a thorn in the side of those running the process and sought to charm them. Having challenged the original decision to award the stadium to West Ham because it would hurt Orient, he is now proposing a groundshare and, if successful, a change of name to London Orient.

      Verdict Hearn is seeking to maintain his negotiating position but West Ham are not keen on a groundshare.

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