World Athletics Championships

MQT on 2001-10-17
Session date: 
October 17, 2001
Question By: 
Sally Hamwee
Liberal Democrats
Asked Of: 
The Mayor


Does the Mayor admit partial responsibility for London's humiliating loss of the World Athletics Championships? Does the failure of Picketts Lock mean that London has lost any chance of hosting the 2012 Olympics?



Answer for World Athletics Championships

Answer for World Athletics Championships

Answered By: 
The Mayor

No, I do not admit any responsibility for the loss of the Picketts Lock project. It was not my idea but a government initiative. I have supported the project in every way possible whenever I have been asked to:

? I offered support to the application for planning consent. ? I gave support through the London Development Agency. ? I gave support through Transport for London. ? I supported and helped the Carter review.

It was a government decision to select Picketts Lock as the venue for the World Athletics Championships and it was a government decision to abandon Picketts Lock.

I am not happy that it looks as though London will not have a chance to host the World Athletics Championships, but until, the final IAAF meeting in November, we cannot be sure what will happen. I have made it clear to the Government that I am happy to support and co-operate fully with any renewed efforts to find a London venue to host the World Athletic Championships in 2005 or 2007. I have asked the LDA to review whether there is more we could do to promote and assist with the range of options for achieving this.

If London does not get the chance to host the World Athletics Championships then I think this will have an adverse effect on Britain and London's chances of making a successful bid for the 2012 Olympic Games. However, I am ensuring that we work together on this in equal partnership with the Government. So that we do not repeat the mistakes of previous bids, I am insisting that we undertake a full review of the feasibility, costs and benefits of hosting the Olympic Games in London prior to making any decision as to whether or not to support a bid. .