London 2012 legacy warning

Lessons can still be learned from hosting London 2012 despite the event's "undoubted triumph", MPs have said. They warned the Games' volunteering legacy risks "fizzling out", while the Lottery's £2bn Olympic Park donation may not be repaid.

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Firm 'won't jeopardise' Olympic legacy to repay debts

Responding to the claims of MPs in a post-Games review, the London Legacy Development Corporation said it will not jeopardise the "long-term legacy" of the Olympic Park by rushing to repay its debts.

We have to look at the longer term impact and to balance that with our obligations not just to the Lottery but also to the Greater London Authority in terms of receipts going back.

While there is a drive to maximise receipts and get the taxpayers' money back, no one would want us to act as some kind of rapacious developer at the risk of jeopardising the long-term legacy of the Park.

It is a balance and we have to work that through over the coming months.

– LLDC chief executive Dennis Hone

Also responding to the Public Accounts Committee's review, the Culture department said there are "many lessons learned" from London 2012 which the Government was "sharing for future projects".

The Government is committed to delivering a tangible, lasting legacy from the Games and work is well under way on this.

We have been crystal clear that the lottery has an entitlement to receive £675 million from land sales from the Olympic Park, that is bound by a legal agreement between the Government and Mayor of London. We will respond to the PAC report in full in due course.

– Culture department spokesman

Olympic ticket allocation 'should have been challenged'

During the Games a large number of accredited seats went unused at events for which many members of the public could not get a ticket. Credit: Dave Thompson/PA Archive

The embarrassing sight of empty seats at London 2012 and the availability of tickets for the general public was another concern raised by MPs in their post-Games review.The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) said it was "a shame that so few tickets for popular events were available to the UK public".

Only 51% of tickets for the men's 100 metres final were available to the British public, and less than half of tickets for the track cycling, MPs said.

"International sports bodies and media organisations wield a lot of power and it cannot be easy for individual event organisers to push back at their demands," the PAC said.

"But," it added, "Learning from the experience of the London Games, the Government, possibly alongside other governments and event organisers, should challenge demands for large numbers of accredited seats."


MPs raise doubts over Lottery's Olympic repayment

The National Lottery played a key role in helping to fund the London 2012 Games. Credit: Dominic Lipinski/PA Archive

A post-Games review from MPs has raised doubts that £2bn worth of London 2012 funding from the National Lottery will be repaid.

The donation ensured the Lottery would be reimbursed from future returns from developments at the Olympic Park, which was developed using the public funds it boosted.

The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) said it was "not clear" that the Lottery's interest is being "adequately promoted and protected" by the London Legacy Development Corporation (LLDC), which is in charge of securing the economic future of the Park.

The MPs suggest the Government should develop "a mechanism" to ensure the LLDC's decisions are transparent and prioritise the interests of the Lottery.

They said current projections suggest the first repayment to the Lottery will not be until the mid-2020s.

Cabinet must deliver a 'lasting volunteering legacy'

Around 70,000 'Games Makers' volunteered at London 2012 venues last summer. Credit: Paul Gilham/PA Archive

The volunteering legacy from London 2012 is "in danger of fizzling out", MPs have warned in a post-Games review.

Public Accounts Committee (PAC) chairwoman Margaret Hodge said the highly-praised volunteers did a "fantastic job" last summer.

But she warned: "The Cabinet Office must demonstrate that it is not missing the boat so that there is a lasting volunteering legacy both within sport and beyond."

She noted the "extraordinarily successful" Games triggered "a mood of confidence and pride (that) swept the nation - and a feeling that this country can get big projects right."

But MPs said venue security was a "sorry episode" when private security firm G4S failed to recruit enough guards in time.

They said it showed "poor planning and then poor delivery by the private sector" as the scale of venue security was massively underestimated forcing the armed forces and police to step in.

MPs issue warning over London 2012 legacy

MPs said it was "a shame that so few tickets for popular events were available to the UK public". Credit: John Giles/PA Wire

A group of MPs have issued a warning to the public and private sector to protect the legacy of London 2012, from maintaining the volunteering spirit to ensuring that a £2bn Lottery donation is repaid.

The Public Accounts Committee said lessons can still be learned from the Games despite the country's "undoubted triumph" in hosting the Olympics and Paralympics.

The MPs said too few tickets were made available to the public for the box office Olympic events and described the pre-Games G4S security fiasco as a "sorry episode" and "notable blemish" on Britain's hosting duties.

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