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2012 London Paralympics and Olympics Information


  • Published: 2009-01-12 (Revised/Updated 2016-06-13) : Author: Mark Mitchel and Matthew Genner
  • Synopsis: The 2012 Paralympics and Olympics will use new and existing venues including the 80000 seat Olympic Stadium new Wembley Stadium.

Shropshire is already experiencing the benefits of the 2012 Olympics and Paralympics and more are on the way. The Games are creating a real difference not only in London but also across the country.

The 2012 Paralympics and Olympics will use a mixture of newly built venues, existing facilities, and temporary facilities, including the 80,000 seat Olympic Stadium and the new Wembley Stadium. The majority of venues have been divided into three zones within Greater London: the Olympic Zone, the River Zone and the Central Zone. Some additional venues are, by necessity, outside the boundaries of Greater London.

The Olympic Village will have 17,320 beds and provide each athlete with 16m2 floor space, a TV, Internet access, and a private courtyard. The dining hall will be able to feed 5,500 athletes at a time.Public transport will undergo a massive redevelopment, including the expansion of the London Underground's East London Line, upgrades to the Docklands Light Railway and the North London Line, and the new "Olympic Javelin" service.

The 2012 Summer Olympics program will feature 26 sports and a total of 35 disciplines. London's bid featured 28 sports, in line with other recent Summer Olympics, but the IOC voted to drop baseball and softball from the 2012 Games two days after it selected London as the host city. The IOC reinforced their decision to drop both sports during the Turin Games after they lost votes for reconsideration. They will be Olympic sports for the last time at Beijing in 2008.The UK's Guardian newspaper reported on Friday 28 October 2005 that open-air swimming disciplines will be added to the Beijing and London Paralympic and Olympic schedules. The paper also reported that women's boxing may be added to London; the IOC confirmed that women's boxing would not be included in Beijing because they "did not feel it merited inclusion in 2008".

There will be 8 million tickets for the Olympic Games themselves, and a further 1.6 million for the Paralympics. Organizers say that 75 per cent of all tickets will cost less than £50 and offer free travel on London transport, with the cheapest tickets for the athletics starting at £15. Additionally, there will be 20,000 £10 tickets for the Olympic Park to watch events on big screens.

Benefits of London 2012 Olympics and Paralympics

Shropshire is already experiencing the benefits of the 2012 Olympics and Paralympics and more are on the way. The Games are creating a real difference not only in London but also across the country.

Major sporting events have a history of boosting economies and inspiring people. Talking at a conference in Stafford, Dame Tanni Grey-Thompson spoke about the potential of the games: "Never underestimate the power of the Olympics and Paralympics, they have the power to inspire and unite." The legacy of the games will give people greater access to more sports and exercise facilities and will help to change people's lifestyles: "Young people will grow up witnessing the ambitious 2012 Olympic and Paralympic vision becoming a reality."

Dame Tanni expressed her belief that in order to get the best out of the games people needed to start acting now. Shropshire is already using the Olympic Games as a platform to deliver many social and economic benefits. David Hinves, South Shropshire District Council's Sports Development Officer, has started a scheme to help inspire and develop local athletes: "I decided to invite nominations annually for those athletes who are intending to be at the London 2012 Games and identify the ten who are closest to achieving this dream." These "Talented Performers" are receiving financial help to improve their training and are acting as local role models to inspire others. Utilizing the Olympics to get more young people active will have a positive effect on society. Sport acts as a way of teaching people responsibility and helps them to be more disciplined. Also it can help to reverse the trend of an ever increasing obese population.

Andrew Jones of All Stretton is one of the talented performers identified. At just 16 years of age he has finished in the top five positions at numerous events on the Under 20 men's section of the 2005 athletics season: "The Talented Performers Scheme has encouraged me to think about the games in 2012. As part of a Shropshire group that is looking forward to the games, it is giving me something to aim for. The scheme has acknowledged my achievements to date and given me the confidence to go forward and aim higher.

Ben Carless from Wistanstow is another local young person benefiting from the talented performers scheme. He has captained the Welsh under 16 hockey team and the games are acting as a real inspiration for him: "The Olympic Games are inspiring me to try and achieve success at the highest level. Of course, it is my dream that one day I will become part of a GB team at the Olympics. It gives me and other athletes a great target to aim for."

Other benefits for Shropshire won't be seen until nearer the time of the games. However, Mr Hinves has already made sure plans are being put in place now to make sure Shropshire is in a position to maximize them: "We have already been involved (that is in the sports world along with our tourism colleagues) with identifying potential benefits of these games."
It is estimated that tourism will account for 50-75% of the net benefit of the games. Not many people know that the origins of the modern Olympics stem from Much Wenlock. Shropshire can use this fact to draw attention to itself, and along with many more of its fantastic tourist attractions, benefit from the money generated by a mass increase in tourism.

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