Wellies warning for outdoor Olympics events

 

People with tickets to outdoor Olympics events should wear wellies, organisers said today, as they admitted the enduring bout of wet weather was “proving quite a challenge” for the Games.

Heavy rainfall has left sports sites waterlogged, with particular problems at watersports and equestrian venues Eton Dorney and Greenwich Park.

Speaking at the first daily press conference at the Olympic Park in Stratford, east London, London 2012 chairman Lord Coe said trackways and temporary surfaces were being laid down for vehicles and pedestrians to travel across while additional shelters were being built for workers at the affected sites.

Contingencies were also in place for some events such as rowing and equestrian sports which have extra days available to them in case they are rained off, he said.

He added: "That is the last resort of course.

"We have got an alternative sailing course available to us in Weymouth and we have of course got the famous roof at Wimbledon.

"Then for those hardy souls that normally reside in track and field, hockey and triathlon, it is pretty much business as usual."

Lord Coe told reporters: "This is a challenge. I have joked in the past about putting a roof across the whole country.

"But let's be clear, this is actually proving quite a challenge to us.

"At the risk of sounding a little bit like a father about to issue their kids off an Outward Bound trip, let me make the obvious point that we are a northern European country.

"People do need to be wearing the right footwear, the right rain-proof clothing and sun screen."

But he added that the Olympics were still on schedule and the cost of the wet weather was included in the overall contingency budget for the Games.

The wettest period of April to June on record, followed by more heavy rain so far this month, has caused widespread - and in some cases, repeated - flooding in many areas of the country.

Forecasters said it was too early to say what the weather would be like during the Games, although there was a "glimmer of hope" that it may brighten up.

Julian Mayes, forecaster at the MeteoGroup, the weather division of the Press Association, said: "There is a glimmer of hope that the main depression track, which has been the source of the rain we have experienced, is beginning to move north now, so we are expecting to see better weather in south-east England.

"It is a slow change and we will have to wait until next week to see how it plays out, but the fact that it is a slow improvement gives us confidence the weather might be better for the start of the Olympics."

Mr Mayes said that despite expectations of "drier, warmer and brighter" conditions during the first week of the Games it is too early to say whether London would be spared rain on the night of the Olympics opening ceremony.

He also warned that Olympic venues north of London would not benefit from the rain track's gradual move northwards.

Met Office figures released today showed that the UK has already had more than the average rainfall in July than would be expected for the whole month.

Its provisional mid-month statistics recorded 71.8mm of rain falling up to the 15th of the month.

And so far the country has seen just a quarter (26%) of the average amount of sunshine for the whole month, making the summer a very dull one so far. The average temperature has been 13.7C, which is 1.1C lower than the monthly average.

A Met Office spokesman added: "While more rain is expected in parts of the UK today there will also be some dry and sunny weather too.

"The good news is that the weekend is set to bring drier and brighter weather to many parts of England and Wales - while the far north-west of Scotland is likely to see some much-needed rain."

For those wanting to take a punt on the weather during the Games, Coral bookmakers has offered odds of 2/1 of rain falling in the Olympic Stadium during the men's 100m final and 25/1 on adverse weather forcing the cancellation of a full day's athletics.

Ladbrokes is offering odds of 6/4 that rain falls at the opening ceremony on July 27.

PA

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebooksAn evocation of the conflict through the eyes of those who lived through it
News
video
Arts and Entertainment
Martin Amis: Taken to task over rash decisions and ill-judged statements
booksThe Zone of Interest just doesn't work, says James Runcie
Life and Style
life – it's not, says Rachel McKinnon
Arts and Entertainment
Eye of the beholder? 'Concrete lasagne' Preston bus station
architectureWhich monstrosities should be nominated for the Dead Prize?
Travel
travelFrom Notting Hill Carnival to Zombeavers at FrightFest
Independent
Travel Shop
the manor
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on city breaks Find out more
santorini
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on chic beach resorts Find out more
sardina foodie
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on country retreats Find out more
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Trainee Recruitment Consultant

£20000 - £45000 per annum + uncapped: SThree: Key featuresA highly motivated ...

Service Delivery and Support Manager

£55000 - £75000 per annum + excellent benefits: Harrington Starr: Service Deli...

Corporate Tax Solicitor

Highly Competitive Salary: Austen Lloyd: CITY - HIGHEST QUALITY INTERNATIONAL ...

Relationship Manager

£500 - £600 per day: Orgtel: Relationship Manager, London, Banking, Accountant...

Day In a Page

Middle East crisis: We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

Now Obama has seen the next US reporter to be threatened with beheading, will he blink, asks Robert Fisk
Neanderthals lived alongside humans for centuries, latest study shows

Final resting place of our Neanderthal neighbours revealed

Bones dated to 40,000 years ago show species may have died out in Belgium species co-existed
Scottish independence: The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

Scotland’s immigrants are as passionate about the future of their adopted nation as anyone else
Britain's ugliest buildings: Which monstrosities should be nominated for the Dead Prize?

Blight club: Britain's ugliest buildings

Following the architect Cameron Sinclair's introduction of the Dead Prize, an award for ugly buildings, John Rentoul reflects on some of the biggest blots on the UK landscape
eBay's enduring appeal: Online auction site is still the UK's most popular e-commerce retailer

eBay's enduring appeal

The online auction site is still the UK's most popular e-commerce site
Culture Minister Ed Vaizey: ‘lack of ethnic minority and black faces on TV is weird’

'Lack of ethnic minority and black faces on TV is weird'

Culture Minister Ed Vaizey calls for immediate action to address the problem
Artist Olafur Eliasson's latest large-scale works are inspired by the paintings of JMW Turner

Magic circles: Artist Olafur Eliasson

Eliasson's works will go alongside a new exhibition of JMW Turner at Tate Britain. He tells Jay Merrick why the paintings of his hero are ripe for reinvention
Josephine Dickinson: 'A cochlear implant helped me to discover a new world of sound'

Josephine Dickinson: 'How I discovered a new world of sound'

After going deaf as a child, musician and poet Josephine Dickinson made do with a hearing aid for five decades. Then she had a cochlear implant - and everything changed
Greggs Google fail: Was the bakery's response to its logo mishap a stroke of marketing genius?

Greggs gives lesson in crisis management

After a mishap with their logo, high street staple Greggs went viral this week. But, as Simon Usborne discovers, their social media response was anything but half baked
Matthew McConaughey has been singing the praises of bumbags (shame he doesn't know how to wear one)

Matthew McConaughey sings the praises of bumbags

Shame he doesn't know how to wear one. Harriet Walker explains the dos and don'ts of fanny packs
7 best quadcopters and drones

Flying fun: 7 best quadcopters and drones

From state of the art devices with stabilised cameras to mini gadgets that can soar around the home, we take some flying objects for a spin
Joey Barton: ‘I’ve been guilty of getting a bit irate’

Joey Barton: ‘I’ve been guilty of getting a bit irate’

The midfielder returned to the Premier League after two years last weekend. The controversial character had much to discuss after his first game back
Andy Murray: I quit while I’m ahead too often

Andy Murray: I quit while I’m ahead too often

British No 1 knows his consistency as well as his fitness needs working on as he prepares for the US Open after a ‘very, very up and down’ year
Ferguson: In the heartlands of America, a descent into madness

A descent into madness in America's heartlands

David Usborne arrived in Ferguson, Missouri to be greeted by a scene more redolent of Gaza and Afghanistan
BBC’s filming of raid at Sir Cliff’s home ‘may be result of corruption’

BBC faces corruption allegation over its Sir Cliff police raid coverage

Reporter’s relationship with police under scrutiny as DG is summoned by MPs to explain extensive live broadcast of swoop on singer’s home