Commonwealth Games: Manchester celebrates capital conquest: London loses out to Olympic rival in fight for the right to present England's bid
Thursday 03 February 1994
The decision could shift profoundly the balance of sporting provision in the country, as it gives an effective signal that the centrepiece of Manchester's bid, a proposed 65,000- seater stadium which has been described as the 'Wembley of the North', will be built. The total cost of the stadium will be pounds 187m, of which pounds 115m is being sought from the proceeds of the Government's forthcoming national lottery scheme through the Millenium Fund.
It seems clear that the Government's emotional and financial investment in Manchester as a sporting host - it has already guaranteed the pounds 72m balance on the stadium, and contributed pounds 75m in capital investment before the bid for the 2000 Olympics - has stood them in good stead in their quest for the next best thing. 'We are confident we will get that stadium,' said Sir Bob Scott, the theatrical impresario who has devoted a decade to seeking a major Games for his city.
'It feels a little bit like a consolation prize after the Olympics,' he admitted. 'But we are absolutely delighted to have the opportunity to bid to stage the greatest Commonwealth Games in the history of the event.'
Following Sheffield's bewildering late withdrawal - they were unable to come to agreement over financial guarantees - the 24 members of the Commonwealth Games Council of England were left to choose between Manchester and the capital, and voted 17-7 for the northern contenders. London's bid, based on the appeal of existing facilities such as Wembley - which proposed to install an athletics track - Twickenham and Wimbledon and offering to finance itself, was questioned keenly on transport arrangements and the difficulty of co-ordinating movements from athletes' villages based in Uxbridge and Egham.
The Commonwealth Games Federation will not decide the host of the 2002 event until November 1995, but the absence of any other declared bid at the moment, and the way the event has been shared around in recent years, leave Manchester in a very strong position. There is even a possibility, said the CGCE's chairman, Norman Sarsfield, that Manchester could end up as the sole bidders for the event.
Scott firmly believes it is England's turn to stage the Games in the Queen's golden jubilee year. It has not staged them since London put on the British Empire Games 60 years ago. 'My only fear is if the USA reapply to join the Commonwealth,' he said with a grin.
Latest in Sport
Arsenal transfer news: Atletico Madrid closing in on Santi Cazorla - reports
Arturo Vidal: Manchester United bid £39m for Juventus midfielder
Arsenal transfer news: Arsene Wenger set to cancel moves for Sami Khedira and Morgan Schneiderlin in favour of Jack Wilshere - reports
Five things we’ve learned so far about Manchester United under Louis van Gaal
LA Galaxy vs Manchester United: 'Beautiful goals and beautiful attacks' - Louis van Gaal revels in 'fantastic' 7-0 start
- 1 Fifty Shades of Grey trailer: First look at Jamie Dornan as Christian Grey
- 2 Is Gideon Levy the most hated man in Israel or just the most heroic?
- 3 50 books for students to read this summer: From Ernest Hemingway to Gillian Flynn
- 4 Students offered grants if they tweet pro-Israeli propaganda
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Vladimir Putin is given 'one last chance' to end hostilities in Ukraine
The 'scroungers’ fight back: The welfare claimants battling to alter stereotypes
The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering
Arizona execution lasts two hours as killer Joseph Wood left 'snorting and gasping' for air
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Ukrainian military jet was flying close to passenger plane before it was shot down, says Russian officer
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Massive rise in sale of British arms to Russia
£18000 - £25000 per annum + OTE £40,000: SThree: Huxley Associates are looking...
£150 - £200 per day: Orgtel: Implementation Engineer Hampshire / London (Gre...
£20000 - £25000 per annum + OTE £40,000: SThree: Real Staffing, one of the UK'...
£20000 - £25000 per annum + OTE £40,000: SThree: Computer Futures has been est...