As a brilliant set of games comes to an end

If you'd told us in 2005 how much the hosting the Olympic Games would cost, and that it would fall due in the middle of the longest double-dip recession since WWII, most of us would probably have said that it wasn't worth doing.

Yet we would have been wrong.

Even if the huge publicicity boost worldwide which the games have given to Britain doesn't help our salesmen sell more abroad - and I think it will, though nobody will ever be able to prove it, and even if David Cameron is wrong that the "massive self-confidence boost" doesn't help us fight the recession, the sheer excitement and pleasure which the  Olympic Games have given to Britain has been worthwhile on their own merits.

Opinion polls at the close of the London Games demonstrate a significant public pride both in the country's team and its ability to host a successful global event, and rightly so.

There will be naysayers and grumblers who say it was a waste of money - there always are, and if moaning and whining was an Olympic sport that would have guaranteed Team GB a 29th Gold medal. But I believe they are wrong and completely out of touch with the spirit of Britain.

So many people, from the Team GB members themselves to all the volunteers, the police, soldiers and others who provided security, the public who turned up to support the games, have given so much hard work and dedication

And I agree with  the Prime Minister that the success of the Games showed the UK could "turn things around".

"It is an enormous confidence-booster about who we are as a country, what we can do, what we stand for, and the fact that we can make our way in a very tough and competitive world,"

he told BBC News.

"We do face a very tough economic situation and I do not belittle that at all. It is a very tough economic world that we are in.

"But in a way what these Games show is that if you work hard enough at something, if you plan something, if you are passionate enough about something, you can turn things around.

"I think that is the lesson people can take from these Games."


Jim said…
I quite enjoyed them in parts, granted not all parts, but most was good and well done.

A little bit of overkill perhaps from the TV stations, but I guess that's to be expected.

Was it worth the money at this time. Well, you could argue either way I guess, but what's it matter? its spent.

I still hated and have done from day one this daft "French before English" thing. Greek, well I could have understood that, but French.

Still, its a great facility that remains, and so long as it has its up keep will be of use to hundrends of events in the future, and, as the closing ceremony showed. That's one heck of a rock gig stadium. Also if said facilities are encouraging young people into sport and activity, rather than computer games and TV, then that's not really a bad thing.

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