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East London could miss out on 2012 Olympics, City Hall fears

PUBLISHED: 07:00 15 January 2010 | UPDATED: 15:28 05 October 2010

FEARS have surfaced that East London could miss out on the benefits of playing host’ to the 2012 Olympics. Ambitious plans to use the Games to transform one of London’s “most deprived” areas will need a huge effort from the Government and local authorities, City Hall has been told

By Mike Brooke

FEARS have surfaced that East London could miss out on the benefits of playing host’ to the 2012 Olympics.

Ambitious plans to use the Games to transform one of London’s “most deprived” areas will need a huge effort from the Government and local authorities, City Hall has been told.

The regeneration would prove challenging and require virtually unprecedented levels of cooperation between Whitehall, Mayor Boris Johnson and the five host’ boroughs, the London Assembly’s economic development committee heard.

“There is scepticism from people in the East End about how much their life will improve as a result of the Olympics,” said committee chair Dee Doocey.

“The risk is they’ll be left out of the benefits after 2012 unless we act to secure that legacy in terms of skills, jobs, housing and standard of living.

“This requires money. The will is there, but the funding and coordination required needs to be firmed up’ if the Olympics are to transform one of the most deprived parts of London.”

Several areas have been identified where the five boroughs lag behind the rest of London.

These include targets for narrowing the difference in life expectancy, unemployment, education and skills.

The targets were described as hugely ambitious, raising concern about how they could be met without funding being safeguarded.

The committee is looking into the role of the new Olympic Park Legacy Company, the organisation at the heart of the long-term future of the Games venues and park, as well as the benefits to the five host’ boroughs of Newham, Tower Hamlets, Hackney, Waltham Forest and Greenwich.


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