On the eve of the opening of the 30th Olympiad in London this summer, sports activist and writer Mark Perryman presents a sharply critical take on the way the Games have been organized and an imaginative blueprint for how they could be improved. The London Olympics have been promoted as of great benefit for the host city and nation. The organisers insist that the lasting value of the facilities built, the tourism the Games will attract, and the popular participation in sport they will promote, all make the spending of billions of pounds of public money an excellent investment. Such claims have been greeted with near unanimous agreement across mainstream British politics and the media. But outside the capital's commentariat, enthusiasm for the Games has been less uniform. There are those who remain stubbornly sceptical of the boosters' claims. Economists question whether the Olympics will provide the kind of economic regeneration London's East End has been promised. Sports coaches doubt the linkage often made between Gold medal successes and raising rates of popular participation in sport. And the tourism industry has produced reports showing that previous host cities have experienced an overall fall in visitors and their spending during Olympic years. In this concise, gripping book, Mark Perryman raises major questions about the founding myths of London 2012. But Perryman, an Olympics fanatic who measures his life in four-year cycles and has the sticker albums of medal-winners from his youth to prove it, hasn't come to bury the Games; rather he wants to revive them. In these pages he sets out a detailed plan for how the Games can be made more inclusive and exciting to watch.
|Place of Publication||London, UK|
|Number of pages||160|
|Publication status||Published - Jul 2012|