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Impact of the 2012 Olympic Games


Analyse one particular sporting event, one series of sporting events (e.g. The FA Cup) or one sporting organisation in the UK. Analysis should cover the event’s/s’ or organisation’s social, cultural, political and economic significance in the UK. You may choose which sporting event, which series of sporting events or which organisation that you wish to analyse.

This essay will analyse the benefits that the 2012 Olympic Games will and has brought to the UK.

The London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games will bring many benefits to the UK this essay intends to look at several of these opportunities; these opportunities include the development of sport, increase in tourism and increase in economic activity throughout the UK. (reference)

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Local authorities are already using the inspiration of the Games to spread wider social, economic and sporting benefits to their communities in the run up to the 2012. This will be the basis for a long term and UK wide legacy from the Games.

The local Government Association has worked with local authorities to identify six UK wide legacy benefits:

– Inspiring children and young people

– Raising our sporting game and influencing healthier lifestyles

– Volunteering

– Championing culture

– Generating and supporting tourism

– Boosting the local economy

Many of these legacy benefits are already important to local communities, and local authorities are working hard to partners to improve performance and service delivery. The 2012 Games provide a unique catalyst to reach new groups of people, bring new partners to the table and help local authorities achieve existing targets. (reference)

Staging the Olympic Games and Paralympic Games in 2012 is an opportunity to bring about positive change on a massive scale. The Games would not only add to the UK’s nation’s sporting heritage but will also celebrate the diversity of the capital.

It is a unique chance to showcase the best of London to the world and would generate huge benefits for all those who live or work in the city:

Boost for Sport:

A London 2012 Games would accelerate the delivery of new world-class sports infrastructure for the UK – and London in particular. For example, after the Games, the athletics Stadium, Aquatics Centre, Velodrome, Indoor Sports Arena, Hockey Centre, Canoe Slalom will all be available for use by the community as well as elite athletes.

The 2012 Olympic Games is most likely to create extraordinary levels of interest from local authorities and business’ that would most likely open up further channels of funding for sport at all levels. Based on the experiences of former host Olympic countries, funding for the development of elite athletes in the years running up to the Games would increase.

Hosting teams for many months before the Games could also act as a catalyst for developing and refurbishing existing UK sports facilities.

The 2012 Olympic Games will increase the amount of jobs, will provide skills for people and will provide a boost for Business’. Every sector of the economy will also benefit from the staging of the Olympic Games.

Thousands of UK companies, small and large will be needed to deliver the Games i.e., construction, manufacturing, catering, merchandise, services etc, creating valuable procurement opportunities. The experience from Sydney showed that New South Wales business won over A$1Billion in contracts for the Games (PWC report), over A$300M from regional companies with 55,000 people receiving employment related training.

The Australian experience shows that around 125 teams from 39 countries undertook pre-Games training in locations across New South Wales. This training is estimated to have injected some A$70 million into the State’s economy (PWC, 2002). This activity commenced as early as 1997 when the Belgian athletics team trained at Narrabeen.

London’s tourism industry will receive a significant boost, not just for the duration of the Games but in the run up to and long after the Games. An example of how an area can benefit from the 2012 Olympic Games is the increase in local visitor economy in Dorset, Weymouth and Portland. They will host the Sailing events in 2012. The Spirit of the Sean festival, which celebrates the area’s close relationship with the sea, has completed its second year and is going from strength to strength. Last year’s festival showcased around 50 activities at 27 venues. The festival brings together a range of sporting and cultural events, including water sports competitions for people of all ages and standards, concerts on the beach, the Dorset Seafood festival, the Henri Lloyd Weymouth Regatta and the Moving Tides Children’s Procession. As well as encouraging people to be more active and get involved with local cultural opportunities, each visitor to the festival spent on average of £68, providing an important boost to the economy. Dorset and its partners will be using the council’s beacon status to share learning on how to secure a tourism legacy from the 2012 Games with other local authorities.

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A London Games would also provide many new learning opportunities for Londoners to train and develop their skills. Thousands of new jobs will be created by building the new park that will be connected to the tidal Thames estuary.

Up to 70,000 volunteers would be required to help run the Games in 2012. This would require the biggest volunteer recruitment drive in UK peacetime, providing a unique boost both to sport specific, and general, volunteering in the UK. An example of this is Kent County councils aim to secure maximum benefit and long-term legacy from the Games. A key project of the campaign is the Kent event team, which has used Games as a catalyst to recruit volunteers for events and one off sport, leisure and cultural activities across the count. The Kent event team is a partnership between Kent county council and the voluntary sector. Voluntary Action Maidstone is the lead voluntary sector partner. In its first 18months, a manager and voluntary support staff were appointed, 700 volunteers and 40 organisations were registered and 20 events were supported. These included sporting, cultural and artistic events and festivals. The Kent event team aims to:

– Enable people who are unable or unwilling to make a long term commitment to volunteer on a flexible, one off basis.

– Support the voluntary, community, statutory and private sectors to develop good practice in volunteer management with regard to community events

– Deliver a network of volunteers available for wider community use after the 2012 Games.

An Olympic host nation is obliged by the IOC to stage various large scale “test events” – such as world championships – ahead of the Games. In addition, International Sports Federations are keen to hold world and European championships and other major events in the Olympic host country to enable their athletes to acclimatise with that country. Such events can deliver several million pounds to the relevant town/host city. E.g. Birmingham City Council concluded that hosting of the World Indoor Athletics Championships and World Badminton Championships in 2003 had a positive economic impact of £3.5M and £2.5M respectively. (reference)

Creative Capital:

Creative Industries is the fastest growing sector in London, responsible for one in five new jobs in the capital. An Olympic cultural Programme is a major aspect of the Games. From concerts in the parks to street theatre, the Games would provide a platform for talented artists in London to showcase their skills to a global audience.

A UK-wide Olympic Torch Relay in 2012 – possibly lasting several months – is likely to involve every major city and town in the UK.

Stage managers, lighting technicians, producers and artists will be needed to deliver the Games. Training programmes will ensure that the skills are embedded within the creative sector for future generations.

Boosting Health and Sporting success:

Hosting the world’s greatest sporting event – given the passion, excitement and interest likely to be generated – would boost Government initiatives to promote participation in sport and physical activity at all levels.

Physical Change:

The Olympic Games would bring forward one of the largest and most significant urban regeneration projects ever undertaken in the UK, through the transformation of the Lower Lea Valley in east London. The area has already been identified as a priority by the Government, the Mayor and the LDA. The building of the Olympic Park and the different venues has many economic and social benefits which in turn has a positive impact on local communities in London and different parts of the UK.

The transport throughout London will be improved in order to smoothly transport thousands of officials, athletes and spectators to the Games. Some of the improvements will be a £1bn improvement to the London East line, a Channel Tunnel Shuttle link from Stratford to Kings Cross, and extensions to the DLR.

The development of the Olympic Park would increase the amount of green space, conserve local biodiversity, wetlands, improve air, soil and water quality in the area. The park will be planted with many different trees and plants. The waterways and canal of the River Lea will be cleaned and made wider; the natural floodplains of the area will be restored to provide a new wetland habitat for wildlife, birdwatchers and ecologists to enjoy in the middle of the city.

The Games would set new standards for sustainable production, consumption and recycling of natural resources. This approach echoes the ethos of Towards a One Planet Olympics, applicable to cities in both the developed and developing worlds.

There are many benefits that the Games will have on the UK but one of the main benefits of the Games will be the building of 5,000 homes following the renovation of the Olympic Village after the games. Officials and athletes will stay in the Olympic Village during the Games and then after the Games the village will be converted into housing for workers such as nurses and teachers. Housing will also be built on the Olympic Park site after the Games, this will provide further amenities for the local community which will include cafes, shops, restaurants etc.

This equality impact assessment of the Olympic delivery authority (ODA) Lighting Strategy has sought to assess the likely impact of the delivery of the lightining strategy on the equality target groups. The ODA Equality and inclusion programme, the ODA’s equality and diversity strategy and the ODA’s three equality schemes covering race, disability and gender equality. The overreaching aim of the ODA is to create an inclusive Games, which promoted good equality practices and access for all. This mission extends the aims of the ODA beyond these statutory duties to include the newer equality strands of age, religion and sexual orientation and other inclusion issues centred on socio-economic, culture and political disadvantage. The ODA are using a wider range of diverse suppliers, this will help to promote equal opportunities to everyone and hopefully will erase discrimination in the workplace by doing this recruiting and managing employees would be considered as fair. The ODA are working with other organisations to offer training to minority ethnic people, women and disabled people to encourage them to apply for jobs in the construction of the 2012 Olympic Games where they have been under represented. The ODA want to create an inclusive 2012 Olympic Games which will be inclusive for all people, ways in which they will do this is by providing a reachable transport network that will allow everyone to enjoy the Games and by involving the local communities. If all the above is achieved by the ODA then the 2012 Olympic Games will leave a lasting legacy for equality and inclusion.

The London organising committee of the Olympic and Paralympic games plan to get women, disabled people and BAME people actively involved in sport by raising awareness so a wider range of people watch the 2012 Games and influencing key partners to train young people in sports volunteering, coaching and other related skills. They will also challenge discrimination in sport by spreading positive messages, supporting programmes that promote equality and making full use of the London 2012 Paralympic games to inspire disabled people. They hope that with the right approach that the 2012 Games will benefit everyone.


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