2012 security costs break the billion-pound barrier
Fears that Games may exceed £9.3bn budget as estimate of personnel needed doubles
Tuesday 06 December 2011
The cost of securing next year's Olympic venues and the cost of the opening and closing ceremonies were revealed to have doubled yesterday, as the Government was warned that the final cost of the London Games may exceed the £9.3bn budget.
A report by the National Audit Office cautioned that "there is real risk" more money will be needed to fund the Games. On the same day, the budget for venue security increased by £271m on the back of a dramatic revision in the required number of security personnel. An original estimate of 10,000 guards by London 2012 organisers has proved woefully inadequate.
Instead, 23,700 will be required to secure more than 100 venues at the Olympic Park and around the country. That takes the cost of venue security to £553m – up from last year's estimate of £282m – and brings the total cost of security, including £475m for "policing and wider security", to over £1bn.
The report says the Olympics remain on course, but there is little room to manoeuvre. Amyas Morse, the auditor general, said: "Not everything is rosy. The Government is confident that there is money available to meet known risks, but the likelihood that the Games can still be funded within the existing funding package is so finely balanced that there is a real risk more money will be needed."
Hugh Robertson, the Olympics minister, said the increased security was in part due to the "fluent security situation" and that it was only possible to settle on a figure for the number of personnel once the competition schedule had been settled and the venues had been completed.
"You can say this looks like a huge increase in the security budget or you can say this is what is needed to provide a safe and secure Games. The first responsibility of government is the safety of its citizens," he said.
It was also revealed yesterday that the Government will hand over £41m of public money to Locog to go towards opening ceremonies for both the Olympics and Paralympics.
Locog's budget is believed to have been £40bn but David Cameron, Mr Robertson and Jeremy Hunt, the Culture Secretary, want to ensure the opening ceremony in particular is a global "showcase" for the UK.
Phil Hughes head injury: Cricket world reels as Australian opener fights for his life
Robin van Persie says it's 'still possible' for Manchester United to win the Premier League title this season, but admits it will be 'very hard'
Sam Wallace: Players of Suarez’s standing just don’t sign for clubs like Liverpool
Lionel Messi transfer news: Manuel Pellegrini dismisses £200m Manchester City move for Barcelona star as 'rumours and only rumours'
Manchester United named Premier League's loudest fans despite late push by Chelsea according to 'Smart Meter' app
- 1 Tamir Rice: 12-year-old boy playing with fake gun dies after being shot by Ohio police
- 2 To help fuel their propaganda machine against the poor, our government has now decided to redefine the word 'welfare'
- 3 Halle Berry takes ex-boyfriend Gabriel Aubry to court for allegedly trying to make daughter look less African-American
- 4 Isis propaganda image showing 'abuse of Muslim woman by soldiers' is actually taken from Hungarian porn film
- 5 'You should come to my house and eat cheeses with me': 4-year-old sends adorable love letter to girl at school
Rochester by-election: Ukip gains second MP as Tory defector Mark Reckless holds seat
'Beast of Bolsover' Dennis Skinner takes Ukip MP Mark Reckless to task moments after he is sworn in
Rochester by-election: Labour MP Emily Thornberry resigns after posting white van and England flags tweet
France 'blocks' Russian sailors from boarding a warship
The young are the new poor: Sharp increase in number of under-25s living in poverty, while over-65s are better off than ever
Revealed: How the world gets rich – from privatising British public services