Games of the XXX Olympiad
The 2012 Summer London Olympic Games are being held in London, England, from 27 July to 12 August 2012.
The 2012 Paralympic Games will be from 29 August to 9 September 2012.
There are expected to be 205 nations taking part in over 300 events with 147 nations taking part in the Paralympic Games.
London previously hosted the games in 1908 and 1948, and now becomes the first city to officially host the modern Olympic Games three times.
London was selected as the host city on 6 July 2005 defeating Moscow, New York City, Paris and Madrid after four rounds of voting during the 117th IOC Session in Singapore. The celebrations in London on that day went on late until the night!
Three zones have been created within London to host the venues; the Olympic Zone, the River Zone and the Central Zone. For sailing events, people will have to travel outside of London to the Isle of Portland in Dorset. Football is also going to be based in several grounds across the UK.
Sustainability has been the key for the development that the Games have started. Venues that already exist are being used, Wembley Stadium, the Excel Centre, Wimbledon All England Club, The O2 Arena, Lord’s Cricket Ground, Earls Court Exhibition Centre and Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy.
London Olympics Transport
London Olympic transport system is an area that has been worked on for months now. Public transport in London was the one aspect that slowed down the decision for the London bid. However, organisers felt that with some improvements, London would cope well. As a result, according to Network Rail, train operators will put on longer trains during the days of games as well as having an additional 4,000 train services running. The organisers have also promised that 80% of athletes will have to travel less than 20 minutes to get to their event.
Ever since London won the bid, they have been implementing plans to improve the transport systems. London Underground was the first task. Most weekends there are at least two lines that do not operate due to planned engineering works. The long term interest of London is in mind, but this is proving to be incredibly difficult for Londoner’s at the moment. Londoner’s now are venting their frustrations at line closures and platform restrictions regularly through Facebook and Twitter and businesses have taken a hit as employees turn up late and commuters journeys are slowed down.
At the same time however, Transport for London, TfL, have carried out numerous improvements, including the expansion of the London Overground in the East and West parts, as well as the new “Javelin” high-speed rail service using the Hitachi Corporation’s “bullet” trains, all of which will be beneficial in the long run!
2012 Olympics cost
The 2012 Olympics cost is, it seems, on an eternal rise. Whilst marketing, ticket sales and advertising are expected to make the most money for the Olympics, at the same time the Olympics are not a cheap trick.
In the initial predicted costs, it was estimated that £2 billion would be needed. As time has gone on, this estimate has grown. Both the public and the private sector are contributing to the fund raising and the people of London have been asked to volunteer their services during the events.
At the moment it is looking like the majority of the funding for the Olympics are coming from the Central Government, with the National Lottery contributing a phenomenal amount. They are helping to create the facilities where the games will be played as well as enhancing the infrastructure of London. New trains, new roads and regeneration of East London and areas that have always been known to struggle have been the key priority for London in the past few months.
The Mayor of London and the London Development Agency are involved heavily in the organisation and contribution to funds.
At the same time it needs to be kept in mind that there is expected to be an intense amount of profit made from the games. Tourists and international interest are expected to go through the roofs, to the extent of the support that the UK felt when Prince William got married.
Wenlock and Mandeville – The Olympic Mascots
Wenlock and Mandeville have been named the Olympic mascots for the 2012 Summer Olympic and Paralympic Games! They were revealed at the same time in May 2010. Huge inflated versions of Wenlock and Mandeville have appeared across London in a bid to get people well acquainted with them. Alongside this, there are videos about the two will be shown in cinemas very soon!
The mascots have been named Wenlock and Mandeville, after towns that were forerunners of the current Olympic Games, Much Wenlock and Stoke Mandeville. They are animations of two drops of steel and the stories of the mascots are credited to writer Michael Morpurgo.
There is supposed to be an ongoing series of stories concerning the mascots in the run-up to the Games. One of the stories that is already written to explain how they came to be (Out of a Rainbow) and the others aim to entice as many spectators to be drawn towards the variety of sports that will be played.
Obviously our Olympic mascots are well versed with social media and both can be followed on Facebook and Twitter!
You can also make your own Wenlock or Mandewille here.
There is also an animated film ‘Wenlock and Mandeville’s Rainbow Rescue’, which will be shown at ODEON cinemas in more than 100 locations across the country untill the 23 December 2011. It is the third movie about the mascots’ adventures. The fourth and final film is scheduled to be released on 1 May 2012.
The Olympic Handover – ‘From London, With a whole Lotta love’
The Olympic handover ceremony takes place to mark the end of the previous games and the Olympic Flag is handed over to the new host city. The end of the Beijing Olympics in 2008 was a fantastic spectacle and the Mayor of Beijing, Guo Jinlong, passed on the flag to Mayor of London, Boris Johnson. ‘From London, With a whole Lotta love’ was the motto.
There were a host of British athletes and entertainers, including David Beckham who kicked a football into the crowd, Leona Lewis who sang Led Zeppelin song ‘whole lotta love’ and performances by the urban dance group ZooNation, the Royal Ballet and disabled dance group Candoco. All performers were dressed as London commuters waiting for a big red bus by a zebra crossing. The design was very well thought out, especially when the double-decker drove around the stadium before stopping and transforming into a sight combining the landmarks of Tower Bridge, the London Eye and the Gherkin.
2012 Olympic Sports
The Paralympic programme is to include twenty sports and twenty-one disciplines.
- Water poloArchery
- Mountain biking
London’s bid initially featured 28 sports, but baseball and softball were dropped by votes of the IOC.