At the end of July 2012 residents of Wick Village rallied to oppose ODA plans for the construction of a new bridge to cross the canal from Gainsborough School. The original bridge had been just for the use of children to get to their playing field on the opposite side of the canal at Arena Fields, a beautiful green space enjoyed by local residents which was destroyed to make way for the Media Centre. The new bridge, however, would include a ramp to allow for possible future public access to the bridge which would take away 30% of residents' communal space and leave the rest unusable. It also meant there was a danger their estate would become a through route for people trying to reach the Media Centre. Residents thought they had succeeded in defeating the plans when the ODA (not Hackney!) turned down the proposal.
However, things have followed a familiar pattern where the Olympics are concerned. After the latest meeting to discuss the revised plans one of the original objectors, Dee Dee O'Connell, tweeted:
'they're doing almost exactly the same thing as last time. Possibly worse.'
Submitted by Julian Cheyne on Sun, 02/12/2012 - 03:06.
So now we have it from the horse's mouth. Ian Kerr of The Counsulting Association has given evidence to the House of Commons Scottish Affairs Select Committee that 'Sir Robert McAlpine, Balfour Beatty and possibly Skanska' had used his services to run blacklisting checks on workers employed on the Olympic Park.
Submitted by Julian Cheyne on Fri, 30/11/2012 - 20:57.
Local knowledge is invaluable! @grahamdwalter Graham Walter informs us 18 Nov #ThamesPath still closed @EtonDorney 2.5 months after #Olympics.
Submitted by Julian Cheyne on Mon, 19/11/2012 - 19:44.
The Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR) has been at it again. Following its espousal of the as yet uninhabited E20 postcode it is now predicting a boom based on the vibrant technology, creative and media sectors of the East End. However, this is located not in the attractive E20 zone but in the areas of Shoreditch, Hoxton and Bethnal Green. Of course, these are not usually associated with London 2012 but, no matter, a plug is still given to the Olympics, which supposedly accelerated the trend and brought with it a housing and transport infrastructure boom! That the Athletes' Village remains unoccupied and no housing has yet been built on the Olympic Park, no new transport infrastructure was introduced as a result of the Olympics and E20 and the Shoreditch, Hoxton, Bethnal Green areas are several miles apart are insignificant details to the researchers with their 'unparalleled range of skills and expertise'.
Submitted by Julian Cheyne on Tue, 13/11/2012 - 03:43.
This Note provides background reading for the debate to be held on Thursday 8 November on:
'the long-term legacy for the UK from the Olympic and Paralympic Games'
The London 2012 Olympic Games took place from 27 July to 12 August 2012, and the Paralympic Games took place from 29 August to 9 September 2012.
Submitted by Julian Cheyne on Thu, 08/11/2012 - 17:40.
Further to the Olympicsboostsh*t report on Games Monitor the rise in GDP was declared to be 1% not 0.7%. When it announced the figures the BBC reported the ONS as saying that 'beyond the effect of ticket sales, it was hard to put an exact figure on the Olympic effect, although it cited increased hotel and restaurant activity in London as well as strength from employment agencies.' This last statement is interesting as it is reported there was a decline in tourism numbers and in hotel occupancy but this was made up for with a rise in room yields because prices had been jacked up in anticipation of a tourism feast. The Association of Leading Visitor Attractions (ALVA) had reported a plunge in visitors to attractions all over the UK during the summer, including the Olympics period.
The ONS makes a guarded statement about online retail sales where others were more outspoken about the decline. Retailers and restaurants were complaining at the start of the Games at the decline in customers and demanded TfL alter its transport advice and these impacts continued to be felt in particular areas like Greenwich and Leyton. The ONS stated that it had fixed Olympics ticket sales in the figures for this quarter even though the sales had actually occurred in previous months.
Statements from the ONS include a lot of possibles, mays, mights and 'no direct evidence':
*Employment agencies showed some strength in the quarter and it is possible that some of this strength was related to the Olympics. However, there was no direct evidence from survey respondents to support this
*Office administration: office administration was quite strong in the quarter but the evidence on any Olympic effect was mixed, with some respondents suggesting that it may have had an adverse effect, as opposed to explaining the strength
*Creative arts and entertainment activities: the arts and entertainment sector has been showing some strength for some time, with quite strong growth in the most recent quarter. There was some evidence from survey returns that output was higher in July and August because of the Olympics
*Accommodation: hotels showed greater activity in the quarter and this was one area where one might expect to see an Olympic effect, albeit mainly in London. There was some evidence from survey returns that output was higher in July and August because of the Olympics
*Food and beverage services: there was some strength in the food and drink sector and some evidence from survey returns that part of this might have been due to the Olympics
*Land transport: there was some strength in parts of the transport sector and some evidence from survey returns that this might have been due to the Olympics
*Retail: retail showed some strength in the quarter but there was very little evidence of any significant Olympic effect. Indeed there was some feedback from online retailers that sales were lower as consumers watched the Olympics instead of shopping online
*Motion picture, video and TV programme production: the data here were quite weak for the quarter and there was some evidence from survey respondents to support this weakness - 'people watching the Olympics instead'
Submitted by Julian Cheyne on Tue, 30/10/2012 - 16:00.
One of the proudest boasts of those promoting the London Olympics was that they saw 'sustaining and supporting' local communities as a key objective. At Clays Lane the first thing the LDA did was lie to residents telling them their estate would be demolished even if the Olympics didn't come. At Leabank Square the ODA threatened legal action for defamation when residents made some pointed remarks about the performance of the community liaison officer on their own estate blogspot. At Wanstead Flats the Government overturned the Epping Forest Act in order to grab a piece of land for a police barracks.
Submitted by Julian Cheyne on Thu, 25/10/2012 - 23:22.
Now the athletes have departed it's time to sell the real estate! First up is East Village, formerly known as the Athletes' Village. It seems the owners have asked the Centre for Economic and Business Research, which claims to provide 'leading economic forecasts and analysis', to help with offloading the stock. CEBR waxes lyrical over the advantages of the new E20 postcode in its 'unbiased and informative' presentation of the 'impressive liveability factors' it identifies.
Submitted by Julian Cheyne on Mon, 22/10/2012 - 23:49.
According to 'sources' more ambulances were stolen during the Olympics than usual. The security services were apparently concerned this might indicate an al Qaeda attack was imminent. Why al Qaeda would want to draw attention to themselves by stealing lots of ambulances and why they would leave it to the last moment to execute these thefts is not explained.
Submitted by Julian Cheyne on Sat, 22/09/2012 - 12:42.
Submitted by Steve Dowding on Sun, 26/08/2012 - 14:19.