i Editor's Letter: A positive attitude to the Olympics


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The Independent Online


Foolishly, I once pledged in this space to take a positive attitude to the Olympics. The basis for that was, like it or not, they are going to happen on our doorstep, and we cannot now do anything about the cash that's been spent. So let's just hope that it was spent wisely, and the Games are a huge success that will make us all proud.

Well, I did say foolishly. Forget the farce straight out of TV's 2012 that is LLDC (London Legacy Development Corporation – real name; it exists!) announcing still further delay in deciding on the stadium's permanent tenant. Oh dear, people, what is the problem? I can just hear the David Tennant V/O as I type: "Apparently, some 'issues' have arisen since the ITT [invitation to tender] was first announced, and the LLDC has decided that it needs an additional eight weeks." And then they will give it not to "Harry Houdini", but to West Ham – "as Seb wishes".

But even Hugh Bonneville's wry Ian Fletcher character might struggle to keep a straight face over TfL and Network Rail's latest advice to Londoners: ditch public transport during the Games and walk between "busy stations".

Is this the same Network Rail and TfL that have been telling us for years that all would be well during the Games' weeks and that London's transport system really will be able to cope – despite the universal scepticism of actual commuters on the matter?

Surely that's why we have put up with years of "improvements". What's the entirely inscrutable justification for this advice from TfL? "Many people don't realise how short distances are between many places in the capital."

Ahh! So, it's good. It's all good!