Olympic venue: Woolwich

Discussion in 'Current Affairs, News and Analysis' started by Blogg, Mar 20, 2009.

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  1. Frankly, even as a keen shooter I think you're over egging the pudding on this one - the problems with the spread of the games and the resistance to placing any events West of london has affected other sports heavily also - for example the original proposed mountain biking location has been ceded to a far inferior site with no real legacy, despite tooth and nail battles to find a better outcome, the only people with any influence here remain the IOC.
  2. I wouldn't be too worried, the chances of the Olympic facilities actually being built in time are getting more remote with every Pound the government borrows.

    The Games were supposed to be mostly financed by the private sector but less and less money is coming forward from there. Coe and Co had to dip into the contingency fund for about £400M a short time ago as not one private company had offered any money.
  3. Since most of the anti-Bisley argument is along the lines of "its the London Olympics, not the Surrey Olympics", it will be interesting to see how the Olympics are actually funded. Is every penny spent going originate from taxes within Greater London? No (national) lottery money? No (national) taxpayers' top-ups?

    Given the proximity of Bisley to London, its international fame and reputation (albeit not deserved...), the wishes of the shooting community - and the scandal of wasting £40m at Woolwich - I personally do believe that the decision not to use Bisley is indeed based on a politically-correct determination not to allow any legacy benefit for UK shooting sports.

    I would go further, and say that - if the decision is not quickly revised - then perhaps the UK shooting community should find some balls and consider boycotting any form of support for the Olympic events. With the recently-announced cuts in team funding, its not as if UK shooting has anything to lose anyway.....
  4. why would the government spend money on Bisley? This would show support for the sooting community, and with the way the political wind is blowing they would not wish to spend money on a facility which thay would like to see closed in the future.
  5. My own view is that all shooting organisations and shooters should completely boycott the Games.

    No co operation at all from anyone. No Range Officers, no officals, no shooters of any discipline and shooters actually protesting at the Games about the way our sport is treated.

    Unfortunately I wouldn't believe for one minute that it would happen. Those chosen few who will be granted special Section 5 authority to practice will carry on with their pistols, the NRA hasn't got the courage or committment to organise it and the argument by any others will be that they have been practicing a life time to get their chance at the Olympics.

    Shooting and all of the different disciplines that form it are far too fragmented and introspective to ever work together.

    The government, the ex pistol shooter Coe and the rest of the Olympic organisers are showing the attitude to the future of shooting in this country and it looks quite bleak.
  6. could not agree more! As a country we have a long and distinguished history in the sport (all discilines)! over the years we have seen the pc brigade f##k us over. Now the 'government' want some natioal pride i.e medal results, they will expect the 'gun nuts' to do their bit! Well b0##ocks. How do we compete without the ability to practice?????
  7. By coincidence, this morning I received the Spring edition of the NRA journal. This contains their account of the Bisley/Woolwich saga, and it quite clearly demonstrates that the selection process is not being conducted in a transparent and honest way by the ODA/ IOC/ Government.
  8. "...transparent and honest"? :lol: An ugly political anti shooting fix from the moment they found out that the IOC would not consider any bid that did not feature shooting sports.

    Anyway Kate Hoey has waded in:

    "A decision to keep the Olympic shooting venue at Woolwich barracks was today attacked by Kate Hoey, the London Mayor's commissioner for sport.

    Ms Hoey said the Olympic board did not act in the interests of sport by rejecting the National Shooting Centre in Bisley, Surrey.

    National shooting federations opposed Woolwich because, as a temporary venue, it would leave no legacy for their sport."

  9. ugly

    ugly LE Moderator

    Nothing to see here move along, so Bisley was close enough to Manchester for the Commonwealth games, and Bournemouth is close enough to London for Sailing (please remember that London has no access to water at all) and the sailing facility is already complete! What do the idiots at the BOC not understand? Left wing losers!

    Edited to add that it may have been better to do most if not all at Dartford which would leave a legacy for little cost!
  10. Well well. Allegations of gross anti-shooting leave no legacy bias.

    Who would have thought it

    Press Release 8 April 2009

    British Shooting Amazed at Illogical LOCOG/ODA Woolwich
    Decision for 2012 Shooting Venue


    British Shooting (BS), the joint voice of the Shooting Associations of Great Britain,has taken some time to consider the disappointing news that Bisley - against theiradvice -has not been chosen as the best option for the Olympic Shooting venue 2012.

    In particular, it is clear to British Shooting that the statement from LOCOG and the ODA is, in our view, inaccurate.


    British Shooting supported Woolwich as an option when the Olympic bid was madeon the understanding that the shooting events would take place at Bisley in 2012.It is asserted that part of the reason the venue cannot change is that this would be in breach of contractual obligations made with the IOC. This is incorrect when you consider over 65% of the Athens venues were changed after the award of the Games.

    It also appears that the inability to change the shooting venue to Bisley does not apply to Barking, another suggested alternative, for some reason.
    The recent KPMG report was originally commissioned post Beijing Olympics to consider the temporary venues on the basis of cost, feasibility and legacy. British Shooting is confident that in relation to Woolwich, Bisley is cheaper, offers the full facilities for the build-up test events, Olympics and Paralympics, is safer, more secure and offers near one hundred percent legacy - contrary to the unsupported assertions of
    LOCOG and the ODA.

    Report Failings

    Crucially, significant doubt surrounds the KPMG report. Key areas are blanked outon the basis that they are ‘commercially sensitive’. In a meeting with the Olympic Minister it was put to her that, in relation to shooting, British Shooting was aware that an inaccurate figure of £60 million had been quoted from within ODA/LOCOG as the cost for building Bisley, exactly twice the figure estimated by our cost consultants. This £60m figure was not denied by her.

    There are already a number of public concerns expressed through Parliament and the press about the aims and reliability of this report. Critically British Shooting have also been denied access to the details of the 70 page report that was submitted as justification for the decision to keep the shooting at Woolwich with Barking nominated as the back-up site.

    The lack of access to both the full KPMG report and the latest internal report from LOCOG/ODA means Bisley is unable to challenge their
    findings and that the report must be treated with some suspicion.

    The LOCOG and ODA press release refers to a feasibility study that had been carried out on Bisley. This is simply not true. When we eventually got them to the table in December 2008 they stated that if we were able to answer some key questions then they would enter into a feasibility study -with them paying half - the total cost of the study being some £200,000. The Shooting Associations agreed these terms. We answered all the questions asked of us in great detail making Bisley a strong
    contender in the bidding process - according to David Higgins of the ODA on 16th February 2009.

    The feasibility study never took place because the ODA never truly
    engaged with Bisley, which was possibly their intention from the outset.

    A Level Playing Field?

    To our surprise and concern we found that financial obligations to be imposed on BS would be different to any other sporting venue. Bisley was expected to contract to deliver the shooting venue at a defined cost, standard and time scales, taking all the risk if there was an over spend. In addition we were expected to pay for and speculate on the potential of getting the Games at a cost of £1.4 million.

    Unsurprisingly, our partners in this venture, Sport England, South East England Development Agency and Surrey County Council were not willing to take the risk on this basis. It was a fundamentally different approach against the interests of our sport, for reasons unexplained and unsubstantiated.

    The Detail


    There are major inaccuracies in the LOCOG/ODA version of the costs.
    • The Bisley cost consultants, who are no strangers to the issues having workedon other Olympic projects, have estimated that the cost for building the Olympic Shooting venue to correct scale at Bisley will cost £28-£30 million against a cost for Woolwich of £42 million.

    • The issue of accommodation is a red herring in that the ODA and LOCOG are fully aware that appropriate facilities for athletes would be available at both Surrey University (Olympic Training venue) and Holloway College (2012 Olympic Village for rowing) both within 10-15 minutes of Bisley.

    Operational Complexity

    Claims made by LOCOG/ODA are simply incorrect, and they were given clear explanations by British Shooting.

    • There are no issues over land ownership, and this has already been stated to LOCG/ODA. The NRA would provide the land held under freehold or leasing agreements with the MoD, this was confirmed by the MOD representativewho attended the meeting at Canary Wharf on 16th February. The Olympic Shooting venue would be a stand alone facility within its own security fence border on either side by Pirbright Army Training Camp and the National Shooting Centre on the other side both of which are secure areas in their own right.

    • The argument that there are numerous clubs to consider yet again is a smoke and mirrors argument in that only four lease holders would be affected. These individuals have already been accommodated and subscribe fully with the plans proposed by the Shooting Associations.

    • As for a lead client to deliver the project, that was always going to be British Shooting. However, discussions never reached that point because the OD wished to create a completely different delivery model at Bisley with the Shooting Associations taking all the risk rather than sharing it wholly or partly with the ODA.

    Time and Reputation Risks

    LOCOG/ODA had already been made aware of the following facts.

    • It is correct that to deliver at Bisley we would have to go through the same planning processes as any other project. The ODA are fully aware that we had negotiated understandings with Natural England, local authorities and SEEDA that meant our proposals were very deliverable if the ODA had engaged with them, which they had not.

    • The ODA were also aware that we had an agreement with the MoD to extend our lease to include the required land on the proviso that it was for theOlympics.

    • The delivery of the Olympic Venue in January 2012 was a specific
    requirement made by the ODA, not set on the basis of planning or build


    In recent times it has become increasingly obvious that shooting has been targeted for special attention. The evidence of this is as follows:

    • Despite being offered detailed proposals by British Shooting over three years ago which would allow the British Olympic pistol team to train in the UK the Government having announced their agreement to allow this to happen, then put in place such onerous conditions that the team still has to train in Switzerland.

    • The recent 75% cut in funding to the British Shooting Team using
    questionable justification.

    • The low levels of funding allocated to the sport to increase participation under the Governments ‘playground to podium’ project, having produced the most compelling business case compared with other sports as acknowledged by Sport England.

    • Finally the decision on not allowing the 2012 shooting to move to Bisley
    despite good evidence that the National Shooting Centre would provide the
    most cost effective, safe, secure and sustainable venue for the Games and for the future.

    Legacy is at the heart of the Olympic ideal and has been stressed repeatedly by Lord Coe. It is entirely absent in any real terms from the approach by Government, ODA and LOCOG. We would expect by now to see unqualified support for our medal prospects at the London games with a legacy for future success.

    British Shooting is very concerned at this stage that all the information given to LOCOG/ODA has been ignored. It has not been reflected in the decision making process and is inaccurately represented in the LOCOG/ODA press release.

    British Shooting wish to make it crystal clear that they still wish to host the 2012 shooting at Bisley and are very willing to sit down in front of a Parliamentary Committee to put their case in full if required to do so.

    Phil Boakes
  11. I don't normally think along the lines of conspiracy theories but I do wonder if somebody has had a word in the ear of that well known sprinter (did you see the speed he ran away from the NPA in 1996?) Lord Coe.

    I think the only lasting legacy any of us will see from London 2012 will be yet another government shafting shooters. :(
  12. Exactly the same thing happened when Glasgow bid for the 2014 Commonwealth Games; Scottish politicians were paranoid that they could be attacked for being "pro-gun" and tried from the start to remove the shooting events from the Games; to be told from the start by the Commonwealth Games Council for Scotland (CGCS) that if they did so, they had no chance of being selected as the venue.

    Ironically, the CGCS is quite pro-shooting; as shooting has produced a healthy proportion of Scottish medals over the years. It was a shooter who carried the Scottish flag into the stadium in Melbourne...

    So the 2014 bid team from PwC spent time trying to find a way around it; and at one point were seriously suggesting that the Isle of Man hold the Glasgow shooting events! Needless to say, that particular lunacy got abandoned once they realised that "spending £x million in another country" would lead to even worse headlines.

    The current solution is that where needed, purely temporary facilities are built - shotgun on the IBSR range at Barry Buddon, smallbore at the Police College at East Kilbride. Legacy? Nope.

    Never underestimate the amount of someone else's money that a politician is willing to spend, from fear of someone being able to criticise them come election time.
  13. NRA has also just sent a message to members in support of British Shoot, stating:

    "We are now in a position where we know that the Olympic Authorities appear to have adopted an anywhere but Bisley policy to ensure the sport gets no legacy out of the 2012 Olympics. We know we can beat the other venues on price, feasibility and legacy but because the reports presented by LOCOG are being withheld we can not prove our point."

    Asking us to lobby our MPs.

    Looks like you don't need a tinfoil hat to believe this is an overt attempt to further undermine shooting sports...
  14. At the risk of inflaming an already delicate situation, I have to confess that I am absoloutly delighted that the shooting will be away from Bisley.

    Then my house does back onto Bisley Ranges :D