London Latest - LOCOG Auction Site; Heathrow Rings; Torch Relay
(ATR) LOCOG tells Around the Rings
that the launch of its own auction site for Olympic memorabilia – including torches – is not a “knee-jerk” reaction to those being sold for high figures on eBay.
David Beckham lights the Olympic Torch from the cauldron. (Getty Images)
From the start of the torch relay last month, some torchbearers have been listing their purchased torches on the auction site available to the highest bidder.
Currently, bids for several torches on offer on eBay are hovering around $4,000, but there was public contention for what people saw as "cashing in" on such a unique item in Olympic history.
Now, however LOCOG has launched its own auction site for people to bid on returned torches that have not been purchased. The bidding time for torches on sale now is two weeks with the price starting from $2.
A LOCOG spokesperson says that it was always their plan to launch such a site – likening it to one set up for the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics.
“The site has been live for a while now,” LOCOG told ATR
. “It was announced at the beginning of May. It is definitely not a knee-jerk reaction to any recent news or anything.”
The site will not just be selling torches from the relay – it also offers the torch David Beckham used to light the cauldron on the Olympic flame’s arrival in the U.K. It's also signed by the LA Galaxy midfielder.
LOCOG also says that during Games-time, other special items would be available to purchase such as the baton from the men's 4x100 relay, a beach volleyball from the Horse Guard's Parade competition site and tennis balls from Wimbledon.
The proceeds go to help subsidize the costs of torches to torchbearers and contribute towards the staging of the Games, a LOCOG statement said Wednesday.
Back in March, torchbearers were told they would have to pay $313, rising to $339 after May 1, if they wanted to keep the torch as a souvenir of their unique day.
At the time, LOCOG defended the cost, saying a torch cost $780 to make and it was subsidizing the price.
Now it seems that LOCOG would prefer help in subsidizing the torches after seeing the money that some people were prepared to pay for a part of London 2012 – though the six-figure sum that was bid for the first torch put on sale on eBay on May 28 was revealed to be a hoax.
Official Russian Delegation
Russian president Vladimir Putin offered a little more information about the official Russian delegation to the Olympics – and it won’t include him.
Vladimir Putin. (Getty Images)
Putin said Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev will lead the delegation at the Games.
He added that he hopes to make it to London.
"I’ll probably also visit the Olympics," he was quoted by Russian broadcaster RT. "I want to come see the judo competition. In any case, it will be a private trip."
News that Putin would skip the opening ceremonies surfaced earlier this month. The move was seen as a diplomatic snub toward Britain.
The Dutch women's hockey team took on China to win gold at the Beijing 2008 Olympics. (Getty Images)
Netherlands Announces Olympic Hockey Team
Dutch women’s hockey coach Max Caldas announced the 16 athletes who will try to defend their gold medal in London 2012.
Eight of the players who contributed to the 2008 victory will represent their country again in London. The other half of the team will make their Olympic debut.
for a team roster.
Heathrow Airport Decked Out For Olympics
A set of giant Olympic Rings was unveiled at Heathrow Airport on Wednesday.
Games-goers will get an Olympic welcome at Heathrow. (LOCOG)
The rings, measuring 40 feet in width, were installed in Terminal 5 to greet international arrivals.
“The atmosphere is electric and often the airport is the first time we see fans and really feel the special buzz of the weeks to come,”
Olympic swimmer Mark Foster said at the unveiling ceremony. “The rings will create a huge sense of excitement and be a great part of the
welcome for everyone travelling though the Terminal.”
Olympic Rings have also been installed in Edinburgh, Newcastle, Glasgow and Tower Bridge in London.
London Games Get Gold for Green
The London 2012 Games helped develop and launch a new global sustainability standard for event management, LOCOG claims.
In a statement, LOCOG touted its contributions toward the development of ISO 20121, “a new global sustainability standard.”
ISO 20121 was designed by experts from 30 different countries to provide a framework for hosting more sustainable events by reducing carbon emissions and waste, among other things.
“London 2012 is proud to have been the catalyst for ISO 20121,” LOCOG Head of Sustainability David Stubbs said. “This is a piece of legacy with the potential to transform how events around the world consider their economic, environmental and social impacts."
LOCOG, the Olympic Delivery Authority, Coca-Cola and several individual Olympic venues have all adopted the standard.
London Assembly Calls for Moment of Silence
The London Assembly
unanimously adopted a motion calling for a moment of silence at either the opening or closing ceremony for the Israeli terror attack victims from the 1972 Olympics.
“It is 40 years since this terrible attack took place and there has not once been a memorial service or event officially part of the scheduled events at Olympic Games,” said Andrew Dismore AM, who proposed the motion. "This is simply not good enough.”
“The IOC say to have a minute’s silence to commemorate these victims of terrorism would be a ‘political gesture’ but surely not having a minute’s silence is, in itself, the political gesture. This is not about the nationality of the victims – they were Olympians.
“Today this Assembly sends a clear message that we want a minute’s reflection during the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games and we call on Mayor Boris Johnson to press the IOC to respect the wish of the host city.”
The resolution called on London Mayor Boris Johnson to “use his position and influence” to ensure the IOC implemented the memorial.
The International Equestrian Federation published the list of nominated entries for the London Games on Wednesday.
Athletes and horses had from January 2011 to June 2012 to achieve the minimum eligibility standards.
A total of 200 riders and their horses will compete at Greenwich Park: 50 in dressage, 75 in eventing and 75 in jumping.
Definite entries will be submitted to LOCOG by July 9.
The full listing of nominated entries can be found here
Torch Relay Update
The Torch aboard the "Scots Guardsman". (Getty Images)
On day 33 of its journey to the London Games, the Olympic Torch will travel 135 miles from York to Carlisle.
The restored steam-engine “Scots Guardsman” will carry the Torch from the National Railway Museum in York to Thirsk Railway Station 22 miles north.
A total of 85 Torchbearers will carry the Flame as it visits landmarks such as Aysgarth Falls and Richmond Castle.
The evening celebration will take place in Bitts Park at the foot of Carlisle Castle.
Written by Christian Radnedge, Hannah Reid and Ed Hula III.
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