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The stadium debate goes beyond Spurs & West Ham

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Adrian Warner | 12:29 UK time, Friday, 14 January 2011

I did say the battle for the Olympic Stadium would heat up this month and it certainly has.

Spurs saying they will dismantle the £500m arena and build a football stadium and the IOC President Jacques Rogge saying he want the athletics track to stay.

And now calls for the government to intervene to support West Ham's plans for keeping the stadium for athletics and football.

So let's step back from all this noise and see whether it will make any difference.

And the answer is; No.

I know the people who will make this decision, Olympic Park Legacy Company chair Baroness Margaret Ford and her chief executive Andrew Altman. The OPLC board will make its proposal on January 28.

Baroness Ford is an intelligent and straight-talking Scot who doesn't like being pushed around by anyone. She will take this decision based on sound business for the taxpayer. If Spurs think they can influence her with a clever PR campaign, they are piddling into the wind.

And so are West Ham by attacking Tottenham for stepping into "their manor" in chief executive Karren Brady's newspaper column.

Ford will ignore all this and focus on the taxpayer.

American Andy Altman also has the advantage of being a details man with no emotional baggage from our football or sports world. He will crawl all over these bids from West Ham and Tottenham. And he won't let Spurs claim (as they are) that they will build a stadium with no taxpayers' cash. The club will get £35 million to rebuild from public funds. That's certain.

The fact is it's all too close to call at the moment and neither club has gone over all of its details with the OPLC yet.

But a polite request from me. Can Tottenham please stop saying there hasn't been a proper public debate about this stadium?

Maybe they don't get time to watch or listen to BBC London TV and radio and read my blogs but I've been reporting and blogging on all this for three years now and BBC viewers, listeners and blog readers have been kind enough to send us many of their opinions.

We've seen debates in parliament, and committee hearings at Westminster and at City Hall. I know, I've been to most of them. And most importantly, Baroness Ford has spent a long time talking to key figures in London about the future of this stadium.

Sorry, you've missed Londoners talking about this regularly, guys, but there has been plenty of analysis, debate and reporting. And it's an insult to the OPLC to say this hasn't been debated enough.

And to those who want government intervention now, it's important to remember that this is a commercial process. The prime minister could intervene now but he would soon find himself in the High Court.

More: BBC London 2012
Twitter: @BBCLdnOlympics

Comments

  • Comment number 1.

    When did a radio phone-in and some blog by a journalist constitue "proper debate"....I think you rate the importance of your blog a bit too highly.

    There are appropriate ways of having balanced debate....Lammy MP pushing his ill-considered agenda at PMQs is equally insufficient.

    If it is a commercial decision, there is only one winner! How can WHU, who are broke, in partnership with Newham Council, who are also strapped for cash, offer anything worthwhile to the taxpayer. Their position is weakened further when one considers the risk of a potential Championship side having to meet the costs of the stadium, which is far too big for their needs? I am sure the Council are not willing to underwrite the the project or offer much less than a Market rent deal with WHU.

  • Comment number 2.

    David Lammy MP is now panicking over the possible loss of Spurs from his area. However, where was he in trying to obtain Grants for Spurs F.C. as Arsenal secured in their Emirates move. Spurs owe Harringey Council NOTHING. On the contrary, Harringey owe Spurs Big-Time.
    Football today 2011 is also a Huge business & therefor Spurs must be congratulated for theif commitment to the Club financially.
    West Ham, probably a future Championship side will be a Failing concern, Never fill an Olympic stadium, hence along with Athletics which only have a few meetings in the summer attracting 10000 crowds, you have the makings of a White Elephant.
    It's really a No Brainer. Tottenham must ocupy Olympic site.

  • Comment number 3.

    Can only agree with the first two comments. Particularly the point regarding Adrian needing a reality check.....or perhaps he has an agenda?

  • Comment number 4.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 5.

    I find this article reassuring as a Spurs fan. The real Tottenham fans feel that if we moved to Stratford it would rip the heart out of the club, how can Tottenham play in Stratford, its ridiculous. Come on Margaret Ford and Andrew Altman, its in everyone's best interests to vote for West Ham!

  • Comment number 6.

    Adrian,

    David Kierle was making the limited point that there had been plenty of people talking about Spurs bid for the Olympic Stadium and various rumours which have swirled about it, but most had misrepresented the reality of what was proposed. He was right.

    It's disingenuous of you to pretend otherwise.

    But in keeping with the ridiculousness of much of the reporting of this issue by the olympic journalist/athlete set, who at every step of the way have singularly failed to report on the scandal of the Olympic stadium and preferred instead to publish athletics led propaganda.

    First of all, nothing critical on the fact that Lord Coe et al managed to squander over half a billion on a stadium they planned to have a long-term capacity of 25k. Almost double what was spent on the Emirates on a sub-standard facility, merely because they wished to reduce the capacity for athletics afterwards.

    The Olympics has somehow also been allowed to be categorised as primarily about athletics. It isn't.

    I live and work in Hackney, I have two daughters, one who's just started school. I won't be able to afford to take her to a single marquee event. I can take her to see the synchronised swimming and that's about it. But I paid for the Olympics.

    Not one of you grilled Lord Coe on this, you tossed him a couple of gentle bouncers and whistled admiringly as he knocked them out of the ground. Disgraceful.

    Then the idea that somehow athletics needs a half billion pound stadium to house all those teeming hordes who some times half-fill Gateshead or Crystal Palace when the greatest sprinter of all time is on the bill. UK athletic's position is preposterous, in essence they are saying that the reason they can't fill their current stadia is because those stadia aren't large enough. Come off it! And where have your boys been in pointing that out to them. Not a single article on the subject. Just fawning, supine, we're all in this together claptrap from you and your colleagues.

    Now we have the Spurs bid for the OS. It's simply outrageous that you allow a succession of athletes and leaders of athletics come out with one-eyed attack after attack and not a one of you hold them to account. I haven't seen a single raised eyebrow or askance look from you lot. Nothing.

    So I'm sorry if football can't be played in the same stadium as athletics. I'm sorry for the fans of West Ham if they are forced to watch football in the environment. I'm sorry that West Ham who can't even fill their current ground for a London derby against their greatest rivals now think they can handle twice the capacity with a failing team, in the teeth of a recession and with no spare cash and history of mismanagement. I'm even sorrier if they go to the wall in trying to. But sorry doesn't change the truth.

    But you journalists have no interest in digging for your story, much preferable to start fights and then sit back and commentate on them.

    So that architect may not have meant the accusation you labelled him as making. But I do. BBC Olympics journalism and Olympics journalism in general has been disgraceful.

  • Comment number 7.

    Dear Will,

    Your words convey the absolute truth about the whole sorry Olympic saga. I expect your posting will shortly be removed.

  • Comment number 8.

    @ DESMOND BENNING

    In what way, that they could have helped, have Haringey not helped?

    They have supported Spurs all the way through the planning process. They, along with Spurs, have lobbied central government and transport authorities for greater investment in the area's infrastructure.

    What more could they have done? Put their own money in? How? Why? They have no spare money. And it is Spurs' plans for a vastly increased capacity that will directly lead to the necessary transport upgrades. So why shouldn't Spurs pay their share?

    Every other developer in the country has to contribute to "planning gain". Hammersmith & Fulham council, for instance, forced Westfield to build a new main line station at Shepherds Bush, a new Shepherds Bush tube station on the central line, a completely new tube station on the Hammersmith and City line at Wood Lane, a new bus depot, a new library, countless bicycle bays and probably loads more besides.

    Spurs aren't being asked to contribute even a twentieth of that amount. But why should they get away with contributing nothing towards upgrades that their development will necessitate? The amount they are being asked to pay - £17 million - is trifling in terms of the overall cost of the Northumberland Development Project. And I'm sure that there is still negotiating on that amount to be done - if Spurs still have any interest in staying.

    Seriously, I do wish people would get their facts right before spouting off about what Haringey have or haven't done. The Spurs board aren't planning to abandon north London because of Haringey council. They're planning to abandon north London because their greedy, little eyes have focused on the corporate markets in Canary Wharf and the City.

    For them, it's all about fattening up the calf before the kill. If they can get Spurs into a shiny, new stadium that is on the doorstep of the lucrative corporate hospitality markets, they will have achieved their aim of maximizing the club's value. And then they will sell. They don't care what happens after that.

    They don't give a damn about the fans or integrity or history or identity.

  • Comment number 9.

    Number 8., completely spot on.

    No one has seen the S106 that shows how much Haringey has asked the club as it has yet to be made public. either way, Spurs signed up to it - why sign up to it if you are supposedly in dispute?

    Planning permission came in 2 years, with the Emirates it took 5.

    All this nonsense about Islington giving public money to Arsenal to build the Stadium - if they did it would be illegal! And where is the information to prove it other than a throwaway phrase from Levy?

    Face it, Spurs want to move to the OS for extra money. That is all.

  • Comment number 10.

    The reason this story has been so poorly reported in the press is that virtually all of the media are giving it to their athletics correspondents to write. No wonder the articles are so contrived and one-sided.

    Who are these athletes to make these demands? Do they think they own the land?

    Athletics has already had a massive windfall of public money to host the Olympics in the first place. Athletics has never been able to fund itself. It attracts virtually no interest and no money except one fortnight every 4 years.

    The new government have realised the Olympic Stadium is a disaster and have come running to a football club to take it over.

    Spurs are well run, well-supported and wealthy. They have a waiting list of tens of thousands of fans. West Ham have none of this. Their bid will be funded by Newham Council (more public money). At a time when our public services are being squeezed, how can this be justified?

    Spurs/AEG are paying for TWO stadia, including a fresh (and more practical) athletics-only stadium, usable all year round, not just when football packs up. The athletics people should be happy with that. What more do they want? No football club (even West Ham) really wants a track, and will resent it being there - AS Roma and Bayern (amongst others) tried and failed with the idea. Even the athletes will resent having to perform in front of a few thousand fans (if they're lucky) in a 60k stadium which has patently been adapted for football.

    The athletes are behaving like a beggar who takes £10 from you and then complains that you haven't given £20.

  • Comment number 11.

    "And to those who want Government intervention now, it's important to remember that this is a commercial process. The Prime Minister could intervene now but he would soon find himself in the High Court."

    But doesn't the OPLC decision have to be ratified by the Mayor and DCMS? Whilst unlikely to want to overturn the decision, they are open to political pressure if it is strong enough?

  • Comment number 12.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 13.

    Will, I can't let you say BBC Olympic journalism is "disgraceful" without comment since I do more reports on the organisation of the Games than any other journalist at the BBC so you are attacking my work and reputation directly.
    On ticket questioning, you are simply wrong with your suggestion we don't probe the prices issues. On the day ticket prices were announced we immediately asked Londoners if they thought £50 was too much to pay for many people. You can see that report on my earlier blog about tickets. Some people thought they were too expensive, others were happy to pay £50.
    I also asked Lord Coe in my recent interview about the price of tickets and also how they were going to make sure people coming to the Games were going to get cut-price deals on trains. Without those deals, families won't be able to afford to come to the Games. I've been quizzing LOCOG and Government ministers about that for a long time.
    I don't think London 2012 will agree with your suggestion I give them an easy time.
    We question every Olympic decision at BBC London, so much so that most of the people writing to this blog think I am anti-Olympics. We think a lot about our viewers and whether they will able to afford to attend events and to enjoy the Games, especially in east London -- look at our recent coverage of the marathon route being moved.







  • Comment number 14.

    PDSB, you are right that the decision eventually needs to be approved by the Mayor and the Government. But the Government can't intervene NOW, as I wrote. They are in the middle of a commercial bidding process which will end with the Olympic Park Legacy Company making a decision on which club it sees as the best bidder (January 28). If the Government intervenes to change the parametres of that now, it could open itself up to a legal challenge down the track from the loser of the contest. Once that announcement has been made, the Mayor and the Government have the right to overrule the OPLC, of course, but only AFTER this process has been completed.

  • Comment number 15.

    @ WongKeiMan:

    I've seen plenty of articles from football journalists who are equally as outraged about Spurs' arrogant and dismissive plans as athletics journalists. So please........enough of the conspiracy theories about the coverage of this issue.

    There is no doubt that the Olympic stadium was very poorly conceived from the outset. And there is no doubt that, for what it is (a concrete bowl with no facilities and half a roof), it is grossly overpriced at more than £550 million.

    But it's no use crying over spilt milk. What's done is done. The priority now is to do the best with what we have. And demolishing a new, £550 million stadium after a mere four weeks use would be utter madness. Any sane person can see that.

    You're right that athletics doesn't attract big crowds in the UK. But the issue for UK Athletics isn't so much that Spurs are arguing for a 25,000 seat stadium. It's the fact that Spurs propose to send them back to the Crystal Palace backwater that has so limited athletics' appeal in the past. It has poor public transport infrastructure. It is very poorly located. And it has nothing to attract the crowds. The move to Stratford (with its high profile, easy access and plethora of attractions) would have served as a huge shot in the arm for UK Athletics, generating far greater attendances and participation. They have no hope for growth if they are forced to return from whence they came.

    Besides which, Spurs' plans are, frankly, utterly insulting. They propose to keep most of the existing, inadequate stadium, supplementing its current capacity with a few thousand extra seats - recycled from the Olympic stadium - and adding a lick of paint. Oh, yes, and they're going to chuck a little bit of annual pocket money at UK Athletics too. No wonder those with an affiliation for athletics are angry. Spurs' arrogance and lack of consideration for other sports and the wider community make me embarrassed to be a Spurs fan.

    As to Spurs being so much the better bet than West Ham, a lot can change in five years. Believe me, I know. I've been a Shelf side season ticket holder for 20 years. I've witnessed the dark days. I've seen crowds of less than 30,000 at White Hart Lane.

    And who knows how the move to Stratford will affect Spurs' attendances? Many fans will give up their season tickets in protest. Many on the waiting list will withdraw their names in protest. Besides, we all know that a big proportion of those on the waiting list have no intention of taking up a season ticket regardless. They are only there now because being on the list gives them ticket priority for the most in demand games. Once Spurs are in a 56K stadium, there won't be anything like the same scramble for tickets.

  • Comment number 16.

    Adrian,

    Thanks for taking the time to reply.

    The tickets have been priced so highly because they spent double what they should have on the Olympic stadium. I haven't seen this put to Lord Coe or any of the organisers.

    If the stadium had been built with a football tenant in mind it could have been sold afterwards. I haven't seen this put to any of the organisers.

    I have seen no study to suggest grass-roots athletics in the UK would benefit from an emotional surge if they know that one day they might do a run in the Olympic Stadium. You haven't put that to any of the organisers.

    This is over half a billion of public money we're talking about. And we could have spent a fraction of that if any of the common sense proposals I list above had been followed through. You haven't held them to account.

    You haven't suggested that the money saved on the OS might have been spent investing in grass-roots athletics. In building training facilities in every London district or up and down the country.

    That for a fraction of the cost they could have built a purpose built first rate athletics facility of 25k elsewhere in London as a legacy from the games.

    You haven't put these or countless other very basic, very obvious points and concerns to Lord Coe or the organisers.

    Which is why despite what you claim it feels to me that you speak less as a journalist putting across Londoners concerns and more as an Olympics fan in sympathy with goals and aspirations of the organisers you interview.

    I do realise however that there's no way to defend yourself from such an accusation and so to that extent it is unfair of me to make it.

  • Comment number 17.

    Quality Will , the BBC is so far up Lord Coe's never regions that they fail to see any financial mistakes in our olympic movement and this Adrian Warner is so far up there you can only see his toes !!

  • Comment number 18.

    Most Spurs fans don't want to move from Stratford. The majority of West Ham fans don't want to move to a stadium with an athletics track - and many of those who say they want West Ham to get the stadium only do so to keep Spurs out. Orient fans don't want either Spurs or West Ham playing so close to them. Seb Coe wants an athletics legacy.

    The simpler answer is to use the stadium for what it was designed. Take down the temporary upper tiers and keep it as a 25,000 capaicty athletics stadium - and don't ruin any of our football clubs.

  • Comment number 19.

    Noelhall, I'm not going to respond to your childish and abusive comments which have no place on a BBC website, especially when you have no proof or evidence to back them up which would stand up in any libel court in the land. If I were to make a comment like that in public about somebody in my reporting, I would end up in court. You've clearly rarely watched any of my reporting or you wouldn't say something so ridiculous.

    However, Will, I'm happy to answer your comments with some facts which I hope are helpful.

    How can there be a link between the price of tickets and the cost of the stadium when they come from two completely different budgets, one involving public money and the other private?

    The Olympic Stadium has been paid for from taxpayers' cash -- the overall £9.3 billion budget of the Olympic Delivery Authority which covers the building of the facilities, some infrastructure improvements, transport and security. So if the stadium were cheaper, the cash is likely to go into other parts of the building project or security which is likely to cost more than anticipated -- it always does.

    The tickets help pay for the £2 billion cost of putting on the Games --organisation, overlay of venues, transportation of athletes, officials etc. This is the budget of the London Organising Committee (LOCOG). The International Olympic Committee funds about half of this budget with cash from TV rights and the IOC's TOP sponsors (such as McDonalds, Visa etc). LOCOG has to raise the other half with money from its own domestic sponsors and by selling tickets and merchandise (mascots, t-shirts etc). There's NO public cash in LOCOG so it can't get any money from a cheaper stadium. So your idea that the ticket prices are so high because of the stadium design just doesn't stand up in the real world.

    I agree that it would have been cheaper to have designed the stadium with a football club in mind. I have reported on how West Ham made a serious offer to take over the stadium before the design was even published and it was turned away. You may not have seen the story but I reported it on TV. We ask the right questions, don't worry.

    As for your suggestion I am more of an Olympics fan than a journalist, LOCOG would regard that as the funiest thing they have heard for a long time. They never get an easy ride from me and they never will. It was BBC London which revealed that their mascot was causing fits for some people. It was BBC London which highlighted how east London was furious about the changes to the marathon route. It was BBC London which revealed how the Olympic Act was threatening human rights and freedom of speech in the UK. I could go on and on about the stories we have done in the interest of Londoners. Just read back over my blog and check the facts before you dismiss my professionalism.









  • Comment number 20.

    I mean of course the logo launch which caused fits, not the mascot!

  • Comment number 21.

    Adrian,

    Thanks again for being bothered to reply.

    Unlike you I think spending half a billion less would have made a massive difference to the leeway the organising committee had with the ticket prices they charged. But it's probably not productive to go on about it now.

    I also can see the passion you have for London and your integrity in arguing the case.

    I'll leave it then with an interview from Barry Hearn, chairman of Leyton Orient, the club which will suffer the most whichever of West Ham and Spurs take over the OS. He makes many of the same points I have and I wish journalists would have too:

    “On balance, the Tottenham bid is far more acceptable to me than the West Ham bid. I’ve got this thing about sustainable commercial ventures, let’s be perfectly honest, West Ham were discounting cup tickets in their semi-final the other day for the Carling Cup and still only got 30,000 people.

    "The only way forward for this stadium is to knock it down, take away the athletics track and build a proper stadium.

    “Unfortunately the [Olympic] stadium is poorly designed, unfortunately the stadium is a waste of public money and it’s things like that, that the government and the people involved in the Olympics don’t want to hear.

    “We want to feel good about the Olympics and so we should. What they don’t want to hear is that someone messed up, they’ve messed up big time with this stadium. There’s no room for an athletics track in this stadium, there is no demand for an athletics track with a 60,000 seater stadium, it’s a total white elephant.

    “We’re all being sucked in as if we’re criticising the Olympics, we’re not, we love the Olympics but the only way forward for this stadium is to knock it down, take away the athletics track and build a proper stadium.

    “As much as Leyton Orient are a small club I would never go [to a stadium] where my fans are 80-yards away from the grass action, it just destroys the atmosphere. You can’t hide that, you can’t put seats on the running track, it just doesn’t work. I wouldn’t ask my worst enemy to watch football with 80-yards of running track between them and the grass.

    “Whoever goes there is not good news for Leyton Orient, they’re both massive clubs and I’ve likened it to Tesco moving next to the little sweet shop on the corner.

    “We are one of the oldest teams in the football league and we have one of the biggest community activity centres in the whole country and I’m saddened to think the legacy of the Olympics may actually be the death knoll of such a well established club. I’ve got to fight very hard to see my little club survive.”

  • Comment number 22.

    "There’s no room for an athletics track in this stadium"

    Hate to break it to you Mr Hearn, but it's an ATHLETICS STADIUM. Bloody hell, how arrogant can you get?

  • Comment number 23.

    Well guys all i am seeing here is a lot of Spurs fans who have no other purpose on this topic than to try and offend anyone and anything to do with West Ham United Football Club
    Spurs at the moment are enjoying great times but it will change at some stage , it always does in football , its a cycle
    Silly comments like " they cant fill their own ground " and others like " players will not like playing in front of a few thousand ( if they're lucky ) "

    Hatred and bile we dont need . If thats all you have to offer then please dont bother but , im not surprised

    PLease dont try to tell us about a wonderful facelift at Crystal Palace either . This will turn out to be nothing more than a paint job and few new seats taken from the Olympic Stadium

    I do feel there is a bigger issue here .

    The Olympics top brass were hugely impressed with GB,s promises to Athletics and the legacy for Athletics for young people in this country
    To demolish this and in its place build a dedicated Football Stadium i feel would be a real kick in the teeth and would damage our credibilty for future events
    This will be frowned upon in a massive way and could be very damaging for the reputation of this country
    we have already seen this kind of rejection with the recent World Cup announcement . Why give them any reason to hate us even more !

    We will see



  • Comment number 24.

    great to see some robust discussion occuring on this blog. i've appreciated the coverage over the last couple of years even if i haven't agreed with all adrian's opinions.

    one issue the stadium debaite does raise is the state of support for althletics by the english public. what's the point of the stadium legacy if people don't go and watch the sport? the other issue i've been pondering is why can't a smaller championship althletics stadium be built at white hart lane or upton park? maybe this is part of their submissions?

  • Comment number 25.

    **It's fascinating to watch the 2012 Olympic Stadium battle between West Ham and Tottenham intensify in the last few weeks.** Blog writer Adrian Warner has said - well not if you have anything to do with Leyton Orient it is not.

    I have not read all of Adrian Warner's writings on the legacy of the stadium but from what is prominent here he makes no reference to the fact that if either West Ham or Spurs move there they will need the permission of the Premier League, who would need to break their own rules to give permission!

    Those rules include,

    "6. In considering whether to give any such consent, the Board shall have regard to all the
    circumstances of the case and shall not consent unless reasonably satisfied that such consent:
    6.1 would be consistent with the objects of the Company as set out in the Memorandum;
    6.2 would be appropriate having in mind the relationship (if any) between the locality with
    which by its name or otherwise the applicant Club is traditionally associated and that
    in which such Club proposes to establish its ground;
    6.3 would not adversely affect such Club’s Officials, Players, supporters, shareholders,
    sponsors and others having an interest in its activities"

    and

    "6.5 would not adversely affect Clubs (or Football League clubs) having their registered
    grounds in the immediate vicinity of the proposed location; and
    6.6 would enhance the reputation of the League and promote the game of association
    football generally."

    taken from:

    http://www.premierleague.com/staticFiles/7a/20/0,,12306%7E139386,00.pdf

    I would be interested to read how Adrian Walker predicts that circle might be squared and for anyone else recommending that any Football Club move there, apart from Leyton Orient (who decided years ago a move there is impracticable, because of the athletics track business) they should also suggest a resolution that does not disadvantage Orient and might be acceptable to Leyton Orient's Board.

    They have said.

    "Statement issued by the board of directors of Leyton Orient FC on Sunday January 23 2011….

    ONE of the most important decisions in the 130-year history of Leyton Orient Football Club may be made next week - and it is a decision over which the Club has no control.

    The decision of the Olympic Park Legacy Company to award the use of the London 2012 Olympic Stadium in legacy to either West Ham United or Tottenham Hotspur will have grave implications on the future of London's second-oldest Football League Club and threaten our proud traditions as a community-based Club.

    The impact on Leyton Orient will be huge. The prospect of excess capacity leading to discounted tickets and the broader appeal to floating fans of a more high-profile club threatens to swamp us.

    A huge question mark hangs over our long-term viability at Brisbane Road with the move of another professional football club to within a mile of what has been our home since 1937.

    It is tragic to think that the true legacy of the 2012 Olympic Games could be the death of one of football's most-established community Clubs. Is that something those in the corridors of power are prepared to shoulder the responsibility for?

    The Club has appealed to the Premier League and the Football League, both of whom would be in breach of their own regulations if they were to sanction a move for either West Ham United or Tottenham Hotspur, but the silence is deafening.

    We've done things the right way. We haven't gone in to administration and cheated our way in to staying in business; we've invested in our community reaching over 130,000 people per year across six boroughs; we've invested in our youth programme giving local kids a chance; we've modernised our stadium by re-building three stands; we pay our bills and our wages on time and we always will.

    The media write about West Ham United and Tottenham Hotspur. No consideration is given to Leyton Orient. The powers that be want to brush us under the carpet and suppress our views but we will not allow that to happen.

    Where does the Mayor of London Boris Johnson sit on this issue? Could he sleep at night knowing that those he has entrusted the future of east London to have betrayed so many of their people by damaging, potentially irreversibly, something that means so much to them?

    And what of the Premier League and Football League? They both have a regulation which states their Boards shall only grant consent to a member Club to move to another ground which 'would not adversely affect Clubs having their registered grounds in the immediate vicinity of the proposed location'.

    Brisbane Road sits one long goal-kick from the Olympic Park, there is no question that it is within the 'immediate vicinity'. Surely their Boards will recognise this at their respective meetings when the application to move ground comes in from either West Ham United or Tottenham Hotspur?

    All parties must endeavour to find a solution which will satisfy all parties and whilst we are sure there will always be a Leyton Orient we can't take it for granted, sit back and be steamrollered out of existence. At this time, our voice must be heard."

  • Comment number 26.

    What a surprise, Orient are overlooked again.

  • Comment number 27.

    Oi Warner, lets hear your views on Tolkny's posts?

  • Comment number 28.

    ++Hate to break it to you Mr Hearn, but it's an ATHLETICS STADIUM.++

    Barry Hearn and the O's are happy for it to be an athletics stadium but if a Premier or Football League Team move there it will become a 'football stadium'.

    Any Premier or Football League team needs the permission of those Organisations to move and their rules prohibit permission being given, if another member football team is disadvantaged.

    Leyton Orient believe they will be disadvantaged.

    I have read no comments from any journalist, politician, Olympics bid Official, Football Authority spokes person about how this circle might be squared.

    Hopefully Adrian Warner will comment now and ask questions about it on every occasion.

    What is astounding is that these rules have been ignored thus far, they should have been considered at the design stage when there was first discussion about a football team moving in eventually. It certainly should have been explained by Spurs and Hammers in the PR process about their bids and hopefully in their submissions, of which I am ignorant.

    The Premier League Chief Exec complains it is Barry Hearn's fault this has not been considered because he has not complained enough about West Ham, see today's Daily Mail website.

    Lets have some questions about this stuff and some comments here, please.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/article-1349930/CHARLES-SALE-Leyton-Orient-chairman-Barry-Hearn-bays-Olympic-Stadium.html

 

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