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Wednesday, 18 April 2012

Paddick, Jones and their visions for the Olympics

Liberal Democrat candidate Brian Paddick

With 100 days to go until the start of the Olympic Games, London Liberal Democrat Mayoral candidate Brian Paddick has called for the event’s legacy to benefit Londoners.

Brian Paddick said: "I am proud that the eyes of the world will be on our fantastic city this summer. But the one group of people that seems to have been forgotten are Londoners themselves. We can’t get tickets, are being told to leave the city or avoid public transport and some businesses face disruption. That’s why it is so important that when the show packs up and leaves there is a legacy for Londoners".

"I want school kids to be bussed in so they can run on the same track as Usain Bolt, and swim in the same swimming pool as Rebecca Adlington. I want the Olympics to inspire children across the city and encourage them to keep fit and healthy. As Mayor I will make sure that the legacy the Olympics leaves is one of local jobs and training, real affordable homes and community use of the venues. And I want there to be a sporting legacy too. Let’s establish a London Games so athletes can compete, borough against borough, and keep the Olympic spirit alive for years to come."

Green party Candidate Jenny Jones

The Green Party candidate has also been speaking about the Olympic legacy. Unlike Mr Paddick, Ms Jones put forward some clear proposals on the Olympic legacy and the running of the games. Ms Jones has called for VIP lanes to be opened up to cyclist and buses. The Labour candidate Ken Livingstone has also come out against the Olympic VIP lanes.

Their mayoral candidate Jenny Jones has laid her vision for the Games and their legacy. Jones said: “By the time the new Mayor is elected, there will be little room to change plans, but we can do a few things to promote a more equal, healthy and open Games. There is still time to improve accessibility and transport strategy, improve safety for visitors and make the games more open to young Londoners in particular. “Perhaps most importantly, it is vital we ensure the best possible legacy for these games, ensuring that the Olympic Park is a beacon for London’s future and that the Games change the culture of sport in the capital for good.”

Green pledges on the forthcoming games include: 
- Accessibility: making all bus stops near Games venues accessible and well staffed to help older and disabled visitors. 
- Transport: allowing cyclists and buses into the ‘VIP’ lanes and creating a 20mph speed limit
- Tickets for youth: giving unused corporate tickets to young Londoners on the day of events 
- Safety: open dialogue between government, organisers and the policy to review plans to protect women, minority groups and free speech.
Green pledges on the Olympic legacy include:
- More youth sport: Make starting a youth sports club easier, including help finding pitches and coaches and completing CRB checks. 
- Land use for sports: Offer property unused for more than six months to community sports organisations for nominal rent. 
- Ethical sport sponsorship: establish an ethical sponsorship pledge for clubs to seek more appropriate sponsors than junk food outlets. 
- Community involvement: help sports clubs make greater contributions to their communities before being given public funds.
- Sports culture: Promote supporter-trust owned clubs and encourage less unequal pay amongst non-sporting employees. 
- Cycling and walking: Convert VIP lanes to cycle lanes or wider pavements.  
- Better environment: deliver a zero carbon and zero waste Olympic Park by 2025 and ensure all green spaces are returned to community use or wildlife habitats. 
- Housing: develop at least half of the Olympic Park through a Community Land Trust to give residents more control over their lives.