When the country was bidding to host the 2012 Olympic Games, there were many sceptics who didn’t believe that the ‘legacy’ of bringing the coveted Games to London and the surrounding areas would come into fruition. We were promised that the millions of pounds that were being spent would leave a lasting legacy of top of the range sporting venues, inspiring the next generation of sports men and women to become the competitors and winners of tomorrow.
We were also promised that from a financial point of view it would do wonders for the economy. The International Olympic Committee (IOC) report of 2014 commented that the British economy saw a ‘trade and industry boost in excess of £14 billion following the Games, beating the four-year target of £11 billion, with British businesses securing contract wins, additional sales and new foreign investment in the two years since the Games were held.’ In addition to this, more than 1 million people have visited Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park since it reopened to the public, and 2,800 homes were created after the Athletes’ Village was converted into residential housing.
But back to the sporting facilities, and we’ve got to say how right they were. We have indeed been left with a fantastic array of venues to enjoy for the foreseeable. Take Lee Valley VeloPark on Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in London. What a fantastic place! It’s an excellent facility for upcoming athletes and casual sportspeople alike to train or sample track cycling, road, BMX and mountain biking. There are also other venues as part of the Lee Valley family in Hertfordshire and Essex for athletics, white water sports, horse riding, cycling, hockey, ice skating, hiking and tennis to name a few. We can quite see why its now reported that more Britons are playing sport than ever before, with 15.6 million people aged 16 and over taking part in sport at least once a week – 1.7 million more than in 2005 when London won the bid to host the Games. Who could fail to be inspired to compete with the array of facilities we now have available.
Marketing Zone had the pleasure of recently experiencing an adventurous day at Lee Valley White Water Centre in Waltham Cross, Hertfordshire. We went white water rafting! Whilst enjoying the thrill of the day, we were struck with how lucky we are to have fantastic facilities on our doorstep to enjoy, ones that can be used by a wide range of ages, abilities and for different aims.
We came away quite inspired and determined to fully appreciate and make use of the venues and experiences on offer to us. Why not tweet us and tell us which 2012 venues you’ve made use of @MarketingZoneUK