Mayor opens first Team London Ambassador 'Pod' for 2012 Games

20 July 2012
  • Volunteers will be on hand at more than 40 locations across the capital to help Londoners and visitors make the most of the Games

The Mayor of London Boris Johnson today joined young Team London Ambassadors to open the first of 43 'pods' that will be located across the capital to help visitors make the most of their time during the Olympic and Paralympic Games.

Around 8,000 of the Mayor’s volunteer army will be on hand in central London and other key locations to assist and inform visitors, answering questions about the capital and helping to guide them to the key attractions, from museums and theatres to restaurants and world class shopping districts.

Today the Mayor met with a group of younger Team London Ambassadors, aged between 14 and 19, who will be volunteering at the Spitalfields pod in the heart of the historic City of London. These volunteers have been trained to be Ambassadors during the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games as part of the Rep London Programme, run by the East London Business Alliance (ELBA), who are working in partnership with the Mayor’s scheme to ensure 200 young people are based at the Spitalfields site, which is the only pod in London that will be solely manned by teenagers (with adult supervisors).

The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, said: “It is fantastic that 200 youngsters have given up their time to train as Team London Ambassadors and help welcome the world to our city. Volunteering during the Games is something that they will remember for the rest of their lives, and I am delighted that they are giving their time to be part of a 'Summer Like no Other."

Among the Team London Ambassadors who met with the Mayor was Lilian Jones, 16, from Hackney. She said: "I'm really proud to be a Team London Ambassador during the Olympic and Paralympic Games as it will be a great opportunity help visitors from across the world to discover what our city is all about."

Eileen Taylor, Chair of ELBA's Legacy programme said: "ELBA is proud to have prepared some 200 young people to be the 'faces of east London' through the Rep London Project - a skills and employability scheme funded by The National Lottery. Not only is it a fantastic opportunity for them to put their new skills to use but also a chance for visitors to benefit from the knowledge of young people who know the area best."

Notes to editors

  • Team London Ambassadors - approximately 8,000 dedicated, enthusiastic and knowledgeable volunteers who are the face of today's London and come from a range of backgrounds and communities.
  • What will they do? They will welcome the world to London during the Olympic and Paralympic Games, providing advice and guidance to visitors and Londoners as people move around the city at Games time. They will volunteer for a maximum of five hours per shift and up to six consecutive days.
  • Where will they be based? Around London at one of 43 visitor locations including landmarks, visitor hot spots, travel hubs and big screen live sites - examples are Heathrow Airport, Trafalgar Square, Oxford Street and Wimbledon.
  • Uniform - includes a polo t-shirt, trousers, jacket and bag and a classic British trilby hat.
  • Rep London - is an employability and volunteering programme delivered by East London Business Alliance (ELBA), which aims to leave a legacy of young people who will thrive in education and employment through the development of key skills, raised aspirations and the acquisition of community/business skills. The programme works with schools across five of the Olympic Host Boroughs and provides a unique package of private sector, public sector and creative modules.