Cameron hails Olympics legacy as cabinet meets at site


David Cameron said the 2012 Olympics will bring "a massive legacy" to Britain

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David Cameron has said the 2012 London Olympics will bring "a massive legacy" to Britain, after hosting a cabinet meeting at the site.

The PM's most senior ministers swapped Downing Street for the handball arena at the Olympic Park in east London, to mark 200 days until the Games begin.

Meanwhile the operators for the Aquatics Centre, handball arena and Orbit observation tower were announced.

Mr Cameron praised those who had helped provide venues "on time and on budget".

'Do more exercise'

The Olympics will run from 27 July to 12 August and the Paralympics from 29 August to 9 September.

The operators of six venues have now been secured and organisers say they are confident deals for the remaining two, the stadium and the media centre, will be signed ahead of the opening ceremony.

London 2012 - Begin your journey here

London view

Speaking to reporters at the aquatics centre, Mr Cameron said: "All credit to the people who have been involved in providing these venues, getting them done on time and on budget."

He said the Games would create "a massive legacy", encouraging people across Britain to take up sport and "do more exercise".

"We have spent money and sporting organisations have spent money building great swimming pools in Luton, in the West Country and in Scotland so there are centres like this in other parts of the UK," he said.

"The whole country can benefit from the legacy of the Games because of the inspiration they will bring to people young and old."

'White elephants'

Ahead of the meeting Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt said that one of the main worries about hosting the Games was ending up with "white elephants" after the event.

"To have got to the situation where six of the eight major facilities now have a proper legacy use is a big milestone and we want to get the other two sorted as well."

Mr Hunt said the fact that the project had been completed on time and to a budget set in 2007 would be good for British business.

Olympic handball arena The handball arena will also host fencing and the Paralympic sport of goalball

The Olympic Park will be home to venues for sports including athletics, water polo, cycling, basketball and hockey.

The main stadium will hold up to 80,000 people.

Details of the new contracts for the three venues are to be set out by the Olympic Park Legacy Company.

It said the new operator of the Aquatics Centre hopes 800,000 people a year will make use of its facilities after the games. The handball arena will become London's third largest site for concerts, shows, exhibitions and sport events.

Ticket problems

The observation tower, the 115m (377ft) ArcelorMittal Orbit, expects to attract up to a million visitors a year.

Last month the Ministry of Defence confirmed that 13,500 military personnel - more than the 10,000 that were deployed to Afghanistan - will be part of the 23,700 security force for the Games.

Meanwhile, the Olympic ticket resale website remains suspended after problems caused London 2012 chiefs to close it on Friday afternoon.

Games organiser Locog said it would reopen once the issues had been fixed - but could not say when that would be.

The main problem appeared to be that the site, run by Ticketmaster, was slow to update sessions which had sold out.

The process was designed to allow people to try to resell their unwanted London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic tickets to others willing to buy them.

Earlier last week it emerged that 10,000 extra tickets - which did not exist - were mistakenly sold for synchronised swimming events.


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  • rate this

    Comment number 318.


    Who will be paying to keep all these nice new buildings maintained and up to standards?

  • rate this

    Comment number 317.

    What a waist of money and time.I thought this country was having to cut back???Must be all lies then?

  • rate this

    Comment number 316.

    306.George nothappy Orwell
    32 Minutes ago
    302.Frank Lund

    Football is the 90 minute hate, its purpose is to distract the common proles attention away from their real problems and give them an outlet to dispel their hate and anger.

    Each team has its own playground, so football could be played in one and the fans could hold their punch up in the other.

  • rate this

    Comment number 315.

    The legacy of the games will be in the buildings but they can only benefit people who live near them. Most of the people who have paid for this don't.

    Financially? The jury has to be out.

    DC will get plenty of global media mugshots out of this. Our leader, the charismatic statesman. Has that countdown timer thingy got a snooze button on it?

  • rate this

    Comment number 314.

    "Whether you like it or not"....

    And if the party tells you we are at war with EastAsia and not EuraAsia, how many fingers am I holding up?

    Think, Winston - or its room 101 again?

    Well I guess "we just have to get on with it and enjoy it the best we can".

    ++good brother, choco rations are up 2% this month.

    All hail big brother and airstrip one!

  • rate this

    Comment number 313.

    I've spent 30 years paying taxes for old people, young people, trains, hospitals, schools, etc. Not sure the world would look on with much interest if we built a new A road, do you? So, I don't mind paying for a one-off show. Adds some colour to our lives don't you think?

  • rate this

    Comment number 312.

    Maybe we could keep the Olympic countdown timer in Trafalgar Square, but reprogram it to show the outstanding debt at any given moment, lest we forget over time.

  • rate this

    Comment number 311.

    Yup it will leave a huge legacy... whether that legacy will benifit or be a disadvantage is up for debate however.

  • rate this

    Comment number 310.

    Whether we like it or not the UK is host to the Olympics this year. We may not have been in favour of the event coming to London. But as it is we will just have to make the best of it.

    Moaning about the cost/legacy/congestion is pointless. We just have to get on with it and enjoy it the best we can....

    ....that is unless you like being a miserable soul

  • rate this

    Comment number 309.

    For just 1/3100 of the cost of London 2012 a real piece of British heritage in Plymouth could have been saved from demolition.

  • rate this

    Comment number 308.

    Yes we all know that there will be a huge legacy, I am not sure when we finnish paying for it

  • rate this

    Comment number 307.

    Perhaps the biggest legacy will be the realisation that we've really had to scrape the bottom of the barrel to fund this "last hurrah", and that the French are the real "winners".

  • rate this

    Comment number 306.

    302.Frank Lund

    Football is the 90 minute hate, its purpose is to distract the common proles attention away from their real problems and give them an outlet to dispel their hate and anger.

    Its common for violence to occur after a game - regardless of who wins. Usually the violence is towards familial individuals.

    This particular "game" is not conducive to a healthy, balanced informed people.

  • rate this

    Comment number 305.

    The PM is correct that the legacy of the Olympics will be huge: a huge debt to be borne by taxpayers and a huge white elephant stadium with no realistic use beyond the games without further massive expenditures. Of course, the BBC and others will also want us to be enthused by the "huge" success of UK athletes attaining a personal best while coming 6th in a semi-final - otherwise known as LOSING!

  • rate this

    Comment number 304.

    For whom!!! Loads of equivalences with Britain being great in the meantime the road infrastructure is going down the pan and the South east is worse than ever. Still so long as you dont travel from the west or the south east ........

  • rate this

    Comment number 303.

    297.Retired at Fifty
    Not interested in one-side propaganda just find it amusing that people whine and moan all the time about things they don't agree with

    ++Perfectly natural. One doesn't sing and dance for joy over something with which one doesn't agree.

  • rate this

    Comment number 302.

    How many of those already "inspired" by football play it and how many just watch it while drinking?

  • rate this

    Comment number 301.

    Huge legacy, must be all those well packed lunchboxes.

  • rate this

    Comment number 300.

    Sarcasm on.

    Oh I guess I'm just being cynical...

    So, let me wave a flag for Britain and support our athletes.

    I'm sure its all going to work out to the UK's advantage - financially speaking - and I trust most of you won't be saying awful, negative things about it in a years time.

    Consistency is very important.

    And gawd bless the Queenie too!

    Sarcasm off. Apathy re-enabled.

  • rate this

    Comment number 299.

    Re 274 Nickburks WHO CARES ? The VAST majority I suspect are concerned about the astronomical costs to the taxpayer,when there,s FAR more important things in need of public funding IE Old folk having to decide whether to HEAT or EAT just for for a starters ! !


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