Memorandum submitted by Manchester 2002 Limited (M2002), Manchester City Council (MCC), Sport England and the Department of Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS)
1. This is a joint memorandum between Manchester 2002 Limited (M2002), Manchester City Council (MCC), Sport England and the Department for Culture Media and Sport (DCMS). This reflects the strong working relationship between all the agencies involved in the delivery of the Games and our shared commitment to ensuring that the Games are a success. This memorandum seeks to address the specific questions raised by the Committee including the crucial issue of progress on Games preparations.
2. Manchester is determined to deliver a successful Commonwealth Games. With just over 150 days to go, most of the ingredients are already in place: all the venues are either already operational or almost ready for handover; we will have some of the Commonwealth's best athletes; we will have the largest ever audience for the ten days of the Games, for any event ever held in the UK and the stadium will be full for all of the major finals and the opening and closing ceremonies; and excellent competition management arrangements given the expertise now within M2002 and the experience of UK sports bodies in staging international competitions. M2002 is making good progress against its planning timelines, and the funders are working constructively to support M2002's delivery plans within a continuing stable financial framework.
THE CARTER REVIEW AND OVERALL PROGRESS TO DATE
3. This current state of play is a result of decisive action taken following the Carter Review in Spring 2001. In addition to assisting in the creation of a robust financial framework within which organisational planning could be delivered, the Review confirmed a number of planned changes to strengthen management within M2002, to improve oversight of the Games' finances and support M2002's performance. These included:
A new senior management structure with two new senior director level posts including the crucial appointment of a Chief Operating Officer in July 2001 to lead the integration of operational services for the Games (see Annex 1).
A renewed emphasis on the critical importance of financial monitoring and management for the future. A separate M2002 Finance Committee was established in August 2001 to improve financial oversight, scrutiny and accountability within M2002. This is led by an independent Chairman, Jim Michie, a former Finance Director at Littlewoods Plc and it involves M2002 and senior representatives of the funders. This meets monthly and appraises the latest budget forecasts and helps ensure value for money in major procurements. The funders also meet as a separate group to review the overall funding position including the use of contingency funds which can only be released with the unanimous consent of all funders.
The creation of a master-programming group within M2002 to drive through progress against plans and improve co-ordination across functional areas.
The improvement of mechanisms for co-ordinating the planning and delivery of the Games by the various agencies involved. The Greater Manchester Commonwealth Games Co-ordinating Committee comprising senior representatives of the funders, M2002, Greater Manchester Police, Greater Manchester Passenger Transport Executive and the Health Service meets on a monthly basis to drive forward and co-ordinate the wider Games-time preparations necessary across Greater Manchester and the North West. A number of task groups have been set up which focus on specific issues and report back to the Co-ordinating Committee. Workshops are also held to enable more detailed consideration to be given to key strategic issues, for example, Transport Strategy.
4. The level of engagement of the three funders has increased substantially since the Review. Their role is to support M2002 on Games delivery issues, to be accountable for the deployment of public funds and to facilitate the wider involvement of Government and other agencies at a national level. They work in strong partnership with each other and with M2002, meeting regularly with M2002, and are actively involved through their involvement in the Funders Panel, M2002 Board, Finance Committee and Co-ordinating Committee in key funding decisions and the determination of key strategic delivery issues including resource allocation, the definition of service standards and the award of major contracts. They are supported in this work by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) which has been engaged by DCMS and Sport England to provide independent assessments of M2002's progress against programme and on management of the Games budget. The timing and focus for PwC's activities are agreed with the Chairman of the Finance Committee and co-ordinated with M2002's own internal audit team and the results are shared with the funders and fed back to M2002. The Office of Government Commerce has agreed to work alongside PwC in a review of Games readiness in April.
5. The involvement of the funders and the introduction of the strengthened management arrangements endorsed by the Carter Review have paid dividends. Following the announcement of additional funding for the Games on July 2001 and an intensive review of the budget and proposed service standards, the Games now have a stable budget which is underpinned by a differentiated set of service standards based on a realistic approach to quality. The latest review of progress by PwC indicated that M2002 has improved its position relative to its earlier reviews and is now in a good position to deliver the Games to time and to the current budget.
6. M2002 are close to finalising detailed integrated venue operating plans and moving from a functionally-based to a venue-based structure ready for the move out to venues from April onwards. M2002's programme of test events is also underway. These give increased confidence about M2002's ability to deliver the Games. M2002 is also undertaking a series of "walk throughs" to evaluate the Games time experience for all key stakeholder groups, including athletes, the media, VIPs and public. These will provide a further check on individual venue operating plans but more importantly allow an across-the-board look at preparations to underpin quality standards, help identify any gaps in service, and achieve best value.
7. Linked with this work critical success factors are being defined to refine plans over the coming months as well as provide the framework for effective monitoring arrangements. A matrix is being put together which identifies the key factors which will deliver a successful Games from the different perspectives of athletes, the media, spectators, VIPs etc. This matrix will be presented to Ministers, MCC and Sport England for approval in April alongside the outcome of the latest review of operational activity, organisational delivery targets and overall budget performance. Once completed this work can be shared with the Committee.
PREPAREDNESS FOR THE GAMES
8. All the facilities are either already complete and in operation or almost complete (the City of Manchester Stadium and English Institute of Sport) and will be handed over to specialist operators over the next few weeks in accordance with the programme. All of the operational venues have been used regularly for other events: for example, the Bolton Arena, Aquatic Centre, Velodrome, G-Mex centre and Bisley. Most venues will host at least one test event between now and the Games: four test events have taken place so far and the lessons learned will be reflected in refined venue operating plans following detailed debriefing sessions held immediately after each event.
9. Ticket sales have so far exceeded all expectations. The initial six week phase of ticket sales resulted in more than 500,000 ticket applications with 13 of the 19 ticketed events requiring a lottery for at least one session. These translated into 333,843 sales or 45 per cent of available tickets. Since 6 January when live telephone and internet sales opened, close to 40,000 tickets were sold in a 24-hour period with an average of 1,000 tickets purchased daily since with total ticket sales now close to half a million and 19 events have sold out in at least one session. Aggressive direct mail and sport specific marketing is continuing prior to an anticipated intense marketing campaign in June/July alongside the Queen's Jubilee Baton relay, the extensive schools programme and the Community Host Business Initiative which are already underway. These sales confirm Manchester as the most successful Commonwealth Games in history.
10. The variability in the quality of the accommodation at the athletes village has been recognised and following a comprehensive analysis, a strategy is being actioned which will allow M2002 to provide single occupancy rooms in one of the major blocks within the village site whilst using a block adjacent to the site as an extension to the village. This has the advantage of maintaining the single site concept which is the best option from a security, logistical and village "feel" standpoint. A range of other improvements have also been agreed in principle to improve the athlete experience at the village. Village planning and delivery activities are now well advanced with capital works already underway on the site and operational planning in its final stages. The same is true of the Bisley Shooting Village and Technical Officials Village.
11. The GMPTE in partnership with M2002, MCC, GMP, the Highways Agency and the Government Office for the North West have led the development of an integrated strategy to deliver an effective transport system for the Games. Key components of the strategy include:
a dedicated free shuttle bus service for ticket holders between Manchester Piccadilly Station and the Sportcity site with a capacity of over 3,500 passengers per hour;
new park and ride sites with a capacity for 4,000 cars and with shuttle bus services to Sportcity and park and walk sites within a 5-10 minutes walk of Sportcity and with a capacity for 4,500 cars. These are in addition to the 2,500 spaces in the city centre which will be a shuttle bus journey away from Sportcity;
enhanced local bus, rail and Metrolink services during the late evenings;
a network of night bus services;
effective traffic management measures (including signage and modified timings at traffic signals);
creation of dedicated walking routes to major venues, for example, a canal side path from the city centre to Sportcitya walk of about 1.4 kilometres;
a major communications programme which will give advice on the best ways to get to venues, for example, by advertising the various special transport services that will be available.
12. Delivery of the strategy is well on programme: the park and ride shuttle bus contracts have been awarded, the temporary structures for the Sportcity bus terminus have been ordered and traffic signalling works are underway.
13. Games family transport plans are progressing well with both bus and car fleet secured and these are being integrated into the transportation arrangements generally. Bus scheduling to meet the demand from athletes, technical officials and media is well underway and venue transport planning is well advanced with a particular focus on Sportcity, athletes village, city centre venues and transport planning for the ceremonies.
Marketing and Merchandising
14. The resounding success of the ticketing campaign with over 50 per cent of all available tickets already sold has demonstrated the robustness and value of M2002's marketing strategy to date. The Games have already achieved a very high profile in the North West and awareness is also building significantly in other parts of the UK, most notably London and the South which account for over 23 per cent of ticket sales. "The One Year To Go" anniversary saw a spectacular rise in the profile of the Games through the staging of a mini-Games with a large number of sporting celebrities in London's Trafalgar Square which drew massive media coverage and tripled the national awareness of the Games almost overnight. Other editorial events like a 50-metre "race" between rugby's Jonah Lomu and Commonwealth Games champion Linford Christie has kept the exposure on an increasing level. Since January national newspapers, which featured the Games heavily in their New Year calendars, have started a series of features on the Games at regular and increasingly frequent intervals (eg Times, Telegraph, Independent on Sunday etc). The marketing and communications team is now fully staffed and fully proactive and is planning activities around Commonwealth Day on 11 March. This will be another major media event when Her Majesty the Queen sends the Jubilee Baton off from Buckingham Palace on a relay through 22 Commonwealth countries before it returns on 6 June to the UK for a 50-day dash around the whole country covered mostly live each day on BBC regional television. On the same day the Spirit of Friendship Festival consisting of sport, arts, education and community events throughout the UK opens its doors with a programme running into hundreds of events between 11 March and 10 August.
15. The Commonwealth Games licensing programme has over 50 licensees committed to the merchandise programme. There are eight ranges of merchandise in total: a core range which was launched in September and seven further ranges and over 500 products (specifically associated with the Baton Relay, the teams, specific sports, the Spirit of Friendship Festival and the ceremonies, together with a Games-time range and a range of collectibles) which will be launched progressively from March onwards. The products range from pocket money gifts to T-shirts and caps to fine art prints and china. The licensee list includes some of the major UK brands, ie. Corgi, Christy, Puma, and Geographer's A-Z amongst others. The range of product is offered at affordable prices with a co-ordinated programme to complement the Look of the Games and the quality of the product is high to ensure customer satisfaction. Consumers have access to the product via a number of routes. M2002 have been very keen to ensure an integrated retail strategy which includes three stores in the Greater Manchester area, mail order and e-commerce. There will also be Games time concessions across all venues. Relationships have been created with national retailers such as Asda, House of Fraser, Debenhams, etc and product will be rolled out across the UK from March onwards.
16. Strong linkages are also being made with a number of national tourism bodies to ensure that the marketing of the Games is a major component of the UK tourism marketing for this year. These include the British Tourism Authority and the London Development Agency both of whom are keen to support the overall marketing effort for the Games. The final detail of the marketing strategy to be adopted in the last two months before the Games will be adjusted in April/May dependent on progress with ticket sales.
Games time security
17. The Chief Constable of Greater Manchester Police has overall responsibility for ensuring that security arrangements at Games time are robust. M2002 has worked closely with GMP in developing the security framework across all venues in line with GMP's current threat assessment. GMP has undertaken site vulnerability surveys of all venues and these have been jointly reviewed and risk reduction measures adopted where practical and appropriate. These include the stepping up of security measures at a number of the venues including the creation of a secure "island" site at Sportcity.
18. The Home Office has agreed to give GMP £3 million towards additional policing costs. However, the Home Office has asked Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary to look at the costs again and, on the basis of its assessment, will consider whether any further grant is justified.
19. The Opening and Closing Ceremonies will be broadcast live to hundreds of millions of people across the world. They are evening performances and each take place before a live audience of 35,000 people. They represent one of the most complex logistical challenges of the Games and the Opening Ceremony itself will do much to set the tone of the Games. Planning for the ceremonies has taken significant steps forward in recent months. The international event company Jack Morton Worldwide have been appointed to deliver the creative content for both ceremonies working under the direction of M2002's Creative Director. Major experts in the field of entertainment have been engaged, some of the top musical talent in the UK is being brought in and the whole performance will be enhanced by the use of spectacular costume, dance and design. The Opening and Closing Ceremonies have a different creative content and "feel" although there are common themes to both including the commemoration of the Golden Jubilee of Her Majesty the Queen. A detailed run through of the opening ceremony plans will be undertaken by M2002 and funders in April.
Spirit of Friendship Festival
20. Formally launched in London on 4 December 2001, by the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, the Rt Hon Tessa Jowell MP, the Festival is a catalyst and banner for a celebration of the modern Commonwealthwith activity extending into every school and reaching out into the community as a whole. With four themes (sport, education, culture/the arts and community/Golden Jubilee), hundreds of events and funding from Sport England, DfES, the Arts Council and the North West Arts board, the Festival promises to be one of the most vibrant celebrations of multi-ethnic Britain ever staged.
21. In addition to the legacy of major sports facilities for generations to come (principally paid for by the Sports Lottery and Manchester City Council), the Commonwealth Games Opportunities and Legacy Partnership, a regional public, private, voluntary sector partnership is managing the NW2002 Economic and Social Programme. This is a £6.2 million SRB5 Scheme, attracting £14 million of matched funding, to deliver lasting economic and social regeneration to the NW Region as a result of the hosting of the Commonwealth Games in Manchester. Projects include the Pre-Volunteer Programme, which aims to ensure that people from disadvantaged communities have the opportunity, by gaining an accredited qualification in event volunteering, to become volunteers at the Games, and ultimately to move on into employment, training or further education. There is also an extremely successful educational website which contains National Curriculum on-line materials with the themes of Sport and the Commonwealth Games, an arts project aimed at ethnic minority communities participating in carnival and mela and a health project aiming to develop sub-regional health projects, some of which have specific themes (eg Asian Women's mental health, childhood obesity). The economic arm of the programme "Prosperity North West", in addition to developing a series of projects which include missions to Commonwealth countries, sector support work, and an exciting project to ensure companies in the North West become suppliers to the Games, is supporting the Business Club taking place in the Bridgewater Hall at Games time. The final strand of this legacy work is the Games Xchange project which aims to ensure that the region is promoted as a tourist and investment destination to all those visiting the Games or watching them on television
Atmosphere of the Games
22. The stakeholders are determined to ensure that the visitor experience is high quality and positive. A "Look of the City" programme will be implemented shortly alongside environmental improvements in key "corridors". Festival "Live" sites within the heart of the city centre are also being brought forward to complement an extensive events programme which will add to the vibrancy and attraction of the city centre. Visitor services are also being enhanced, using volunteers wherever possible, and high quality public information on behalf of all the stakeholders is being produced.
23. The latest Games' operating budget is attached at Annex 2. M2002's operating budget currently stands at approx. £129.9 million including the cost of the Baton Relay. This is funded by £50.9 million from the commercial sector and £79 million from the public sector. Under the 2 July 2001 funding agreement, £30.6 million of the additional funding is held by MCC and allocated towards meeting the costs of the stadium and other venues, additional human resources required for the Games, as well as the budget for the Look of the City.
24. An operational funding reserve is included within the operating budget. In addition, as part of the additional funding announced on 2 July, the funders created a £25 million contingency fund which can only be used with the unanimous consent of all three funders. Funders have determined that this should be maintained as a special fund to deal with emergencies rather than as a management contingency. To date the only release so far agreed from the contingency fund is to deal with the failure of Atlantic Telecom, one of the Games' principal sponsors and also the key telecoms infrastructure and service provider.
25. Over the next few weeks, and once the major thrust of the procurement programme has been delivered, a consolidated review of the operational budget will be undertaken. This review will be informed by the "Success Factors" Initiative and at that stage, certainly in April, it is anticipated that decisions will be taken to refine budgets and if necessary, earmark further contingency funding. The intention remains that a significant contingency will be available in the immediate period leading up to, and during, the Games.