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What does that mean in reality? Naturally, there is a strong focus around the Olympic Park and the physical and community regeneration legacy. The park itself will leave the largest urban space created in Europe in the past 150 years: 120 hectares of ecologically managed land, decontaminated, and a huge asset to people living in east London and, more profoundly, the Lower Lea Valley; the Olympic village, built to the highest specification for energy efficiency and accessibility, will leave 9,000 new homes for Londoners and key workers; our venues are designed and built with future community use in mind; and transport infrastructure improvements will benefit commuters and business alike.

Tackling emissions and environmental degradation will lead to direct improvements for communities. The consequences of pollution fall disproportionately on the poor, so spotlighting climate change, waste and biodiversity will help the people of east London and internationally.

Let me be frank: as the chairman of the organising committee, I do not need clean rivers or 95 per cent of site waste to be recycled to stage a successful

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Games but, more than four years before our opening ceremony, they have already been achieved in some scale through our groundbreaking focus on sustainability.

London, through sport—so often the hidden social worker in our communities—is taking the lead and boosting the standard of living of its population. Promoting inclusive communities is fundamental to that vision, too. London is the most diverse city on earth, and the richness and openness that come from its many cultural influences played an important role in nudging us across the line in Singapore. We should never forget that.

The London Games will be open to all and will promote the change in attitude towards groups which often face disadvantage or discrimination, particularly in disability—the softer legacy, if you like. However, getting this right will also bequeath an invaluable “hard legacy” through people gaining skills and employment and through economic opportunities for social entrepreneurs.

Perhaps I may take two very good examples—first, around skills and our pre-volunteer programme. There will be a need for more than 50,000 volunteers working at venues to help athletes and spectators to get the most out of their Games experience. This programme is now targeting unskilled and historically excluded groups from across the country, and in 2012 some 10 per cent of volunteers will be drawn from graduates of this programme—newly skilled and each with a brighter future for themselves, their family and the communities they live in.

Secondly, on economic opportunities, the London 2012 Business Network, which I launched in Manchester yesterday, will help firms, particularly small and medium-sized enterprises, get “bid-fit” for Games-associated contracts. Let us be clear—I say this as someone London-born, Sheffield-raised and Loughborough-trained—that although the capital is the host city, we are taking this message to all nations and regions so all can share.

Finally, London and Britain have a once-in-a-generation opportunity to promote healthy living through sports participation. The Olympic Games will inspire a new generation to take up sports that they may have been unaware even existed, our medals a catalyst for improved and increased participation.

Communities will also benefit from the physical infrastructure: the stadium, specifically designed for community use after the Games, an aquatics centre and a velodrome, finally delivering sporting facilities to match London's reputation as a world leader in so many other areas.

There are 1,685 days until the opening ceremony in east London—that is just 240 Thursdays. We are determined in that time to get the sporting preparations right, on time and on budget to deliver the most memorable Games ever. Even more so, we want to see the next four years and six weeks of sport act as a springboard for the social, economic and cultural life of Britain's people into the future.

The last question I want to be asked at the closing ceremony to the Paralympic Games in 2012 is, “But

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couldn’t we have made much more of all this?”. That means that my job and those of my team will not always be easy, but we are all determined that the answer to that question will be “No”.

Baroness Farrington of Ribbleton: My Lords, I know that very few Members of your Lordships’ House can do the four-minute mile; I suspect that all could do the six-minute speech, remembering that when it says six minutes on the clock, you are over time.

12.11 pm

Baroness Bonham-Carter of Yarnbury: My Lords, I, too, thank the noble Lord, Lord Mawson, for initiating this debate. I intend in my speech to concentrate specifically on the cultural legacy that I believe that the 2012 London Olympics can secure.

As everyone who takes part in these debates now knows, the modern Olympic movement was created by Pierre de Coubertin, an amateur boxer, but also a poet. The cornerstone to his vision in reviving the Olympics was to bring sport and culture together in one great festival. He did not simply desire to glory in great physical feats but, as the ancient Greeks had done, to celebrate mind as well as body. That was precisely the line taken in London's bid for the 2012 Games, and one of the reasons it won. It promised to leave a lasting cultural legacy.

In a speech last May, the then Secretary of State, Tessa Jowell, expanded on the Government’s concept of the cultural element. She said:

Those words are wholeheartedly to be welcomed: the ambition to place culture as a central part of the legacy of the London Olympics stated absolutely clearly.

In the same speech, Ms Jowell referred to the building of,

It is with that delivery structure that we on these Benches have concerns in the areas of finance and organisation.

When London won the Olympics, there was general rejoicing, but right from the start there were concerns among the cultural and arts sectors that money would be siphoned off to pay for what was essentially a sporting extravaganza—correct concerns, I am afraid. As the costs of the Olympics have escalated, so have the raids on the lottery good causes fund, with knock-on effects for the cultural sector in general, but also for the cultural Olympiad in particular.

The escalation goes on. Simon Hoggart of the Guardian this week calculated that the amount of money we are spending on the Olympics every 44 minutes between now and 2012 is £180,000—equivalent exactly to the annual grant that the Arts

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Council is threatening to take away from the Bush Theatre. He is quick-witted in more ways than one, apparently. However, these statistics sit uneasily with the stated aim of having culture at the heart of the Olympics.

There are three tiers to the Cultural Olympiad. Tier 1 is the mandatory ceremonies, for which there is a budget, although we do not have a figure. Tier 2 is 10 major cultural events involving key partners such as the BBC, the British Museum and the Royal Shakespeare Company. Tier 3 is a UK-wide cultural festival. The last tier is unique to the London bid and is designed to encompass thousands of local and regional events as part of our nationwide celebration.

However, there is no allocated funding for tier 3. This money has to be found locally and by the voluntary arts and heritage groups rooted in our communities. The last diversion of lottery funds hit them particularly hard. At the end of last year, the Minister replied to a Question for Written Answer on lack of funding, saying:

This trust seems very keen on being launched, but less keen on actually leaving port. It has been launched no fewer than three times, most recently in May. This is not clear or structured behaviour and the consequence is that it is only now that the process of tendering for the money involved has begun. Of that money, £6 million has already been ring-fenced for the UK School Games; £24 million is going to the nations and regions; and a paltry £10 million for everything else. Compare that with the £750 million being diverted from the arts via special Olympic lottery games. Can the Minister assure the House that the money will not be taken from this £10 million allocated for those unspecified costs for the mandatory ceremonies?

The Government argue that the arts should contribute to the Olympic bill because the Cultural Olympiad that runs alongside the sporting one will be a huge success. It will not be a huge success if it does not happen, and it will not happen if there are not enough funds. At the moment, there is not nearly enough to achieve what the Government envisage. We on these Benches have suggestions about where extra money can be found for lottery good causes and consequently for the cultural organisations. One is a gross profits tax for the lottery and the other a crackdown on lottery-style games—so-called grey games—which, through imitation, dupe people into spending their money elsewhere than the National Lottery. We believe that these proposals could raise significant amounts. In Tuesday’s Olympic lottery debate in another place, the Secretary of State indicated his support for our proposals and I hope that the Minister will confirm today that the Government intend to set up a review into them.

We on these Benches look forward to a successful Olympic Games and we wholeheartedly endorse the idea of the Cultural Olympiad as envisaged by the Government. It is a unique opportunity to celebrate UK talent and creative talent, and to expand

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audiences, inspire the young and deliver much more than just a worthwhile legacy. This will happen only with proper resources and proper structures.

12.18 pm

The Lord Bishop of London: My Lords, one thing is very clear. We are thinking about single individuals. The noble Lord, Lord Mawson, will certainly leave a very visible and very important legacy in east London. Like other noble Lords, I am most grateful to him for having introduced this subject. I would like to associate myself with many of things that he has said.

I obviously have to declare an interest, because I am responsible for 500 communities of social entrepreneurs. As faith is such a dodgy question, I had better describe them as such. That is what churches, temples and gurdwaras, actually are—communities of social entrepreneurs. I am also responsible in the Diocese of London alone for 150 schools. The noble Lord, Lord Coe, talked about diversity. He is absolutely right. In one of our schools in the vicinity of the Olympic Stadium in Haringey, 70 languages are spoken. For homiletic reasons, it is convenient that they run from Albanian to Zulu. We have an astonishing diversity. Nowhere in the world has anyone ever before tried to build a community on the basis of that kind of diversity.

The noble Lord, Lord Mawson, talked about the soil. When my mother worked for George Lansbury in Bow in the 1920s and 1930s, the real social glue that held the community together was membership of a political party or a union. That is no longer the case. The unignorable communities of social entrepreneurs, and the bodies that regularly assemble citizens in considerable numbers, for a good and constructive purpose, are mosques, temples, gurdwaras and churches. We need more adequate ways of relating to these communities of social entrepreneurs and to the faith communities in the immediate vicinity of the Olympic developments. We should review how that is being done at the moment and look at ways in which it can be done more adequately.

We are trying to help. Christians in London have set up a new organisation called More Than Gold, chaired by the noble Lord, Lord Mawhinney. On Tuesday we will license our chaplain for the Olympics, Canon Duncan Green. That is only a Church of England contribution to a general Christian effort—a fully ecumenical effort—that recognises that we have been building good relations with other faith communities for years. We want to work in an inter-faith way. For instance, immediately after the recent regrettable comments about no-go areas in our city were made, we were able, with Muslim colleagues in Tower Hamlets, in the immediate vicinity of the new Olympic developments, to issue a joint statement denying that that description was true in our vicinity.

So there is a very hopeful community here. I agree with the point made by the noble Lord, Lord Harris, that if we are thinking about delicate issues of security for the Olympics, part of making them secure will be to involve local faith communities and use them as a conduit of communication with the larger constituency.

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We are trying to be positive. However, I echo much of what the noble Lord, Lord Mawson, said. We are contemplating a new town of perhaps 40,000 people eventually. That will be one of the great legacies of these Olympics—40,000 people in one of the most deprived areas of the UK. It will have an enormous impact on existing communities and on the whole of east London. I am aware of local frustration at the latest planning applications, which seem to have revised downwards the scale of the original legacy provision. Like the noble Lord, Lord Mawson, I want to know how local people are not only to be informed but more thoroughly involved in these developments.

My last word is that I am certainly not part of the whingers’ chorus. The great legacy from these Games that we want for the whole of the UK is inspiration, better health and better confidence. That is what they promise and that is what we are all hoping for. But if that is to be achieved, we need to pay serious attention to the points made by the noble Lord, Lord Mawson, about engagement with the local community.

12.23 pm

Baroness Valentine:My Lords, I congratulate the noble Lord, Lord Mawson, for securing this debate. I, too, have visited the Bromley-by-Bow Centre and been impressed by his activities there.

Understandably, government attention has focused on staging the Games in 2012, and excellent progress is being made. But it was the promised legacy that persuaded the IOC to pass the Olympic torch to London. There are many forms of legacy, but the Games will have succeeded if they transform people’s lives. This morning, I will focus on the once-in-a-lifetime catalyst that the Olympic legacy represents for the revitalisation of the East End of London. It is easy to say that the East End needs changing. It is more difficult to define what it should change to. This week, at the O2 in Greenwich, a certain reformed girl band is singing:

We must uncover what east London really really wants. We must offer a positive, ambitious new vision which embraces and raises the aspirations of east Londoners, new and old.

My contribution to the vision for the area would include building on its potential as an international tourist destination, raising employment by exploiting the area’s advantages as a business location, and building modern, necessarily dense, attractive green and waterside housing where people from all walks of life both want to and can live. Perhaps new and old east Londoners want allotments, pubs, wind turbines, mosques or churches. We need to uncover what enables people to relate to their east London village, to make each a place where people want to live and work—a new-generation London.

East London has the potential to be a world-class visitor destination. It has a string of venues: the O2, the world’s most popular entertainment venue; ExCel’s exhibition centre; the Silvertown aquarium; the Olympic swimming pool and velodrome; and Lea Valley Park. The South Bank has seen extraordinary

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change in the last decade, so why not the same for east London in the next? It has superb access to markets, with the world’s most important financial centres on its doorstep, together with European links via City Airport and the Channel Tunnel station at Stratford, and of course Crossrail will add further links. East London could aspire to be a quartier for French headquarters in Britain; East 15 could become the 15th arrondissement. After all, it takes the same time to get from Stratford to Paris as it does from London to Manchester. Whatever the right answer, the opportunity is there.

The Lower Lea Valley is next door to the Olympic park. It is a forlorn, ex-industrial area where planners have identified the potential to build 35,000 homes in the next decade. It has eight miles of canal and river frontage—the distance along the South Bank from Greenwich to County Hall. Because of the challenges, the Government designated it a priority area for regeneration—before we won the Olympic Games—and appointed an urban development corporation. However, government investment in the Lower Lea Valley languishes. The so-called Legacy Masterplan Framework for 2012 looks almost only at the park. Regeneration infrastructure for the Olympic park needs £2.7 billion of Olympic money, yet only £120 million has been committed to the Lower Lea Valley, an area over twice its size. One thing is for sure—that will not be enough to underpin the targeted 35,000 homes, let alone a broader vision.

The area needs government commitment to providing bridges, roads, schools, health centres and utilities. Perhaps the mayor or the new Housing and Communities Agency could underwrite that investment. It would be naive to hope that developers will cough it all up; the public sector needs to woo them to the area, not deaden potential by taxing first and delivering—maybe—later. Developers have to tackle a plethora of policy and bureaucracy emanating from a veritable multitude of public bodies. There are more bodies responsible for the Thames Gateway than emerged in the aftermath of rail privatisation. Development is subject to regulation from three London boroughs, Lea Valley Regional Park Authority, English Partnerships, the Housing Corporation, the London Thames Gateway Development Corporation, the mayor and his agencies, the DCLG’s Thames Gateway Executive and a partridge in a pear tree. What is the Thames Gateway? Where is it? The 1980s marriage of convenience by the noble Lord, Lord Heseltine, between parts of Kent, Essex and London initially helped to secure attention and funding, but nobody living in Stratford, Greenwich or Ebbsfleet would call themselves a Thames Gatewayer. London now has a mayor and a measure of devolved government so, for Londoners, the Thames Gateway may have passed its use-by date. I could argue that the Thames Gateway was as relevant as Clwyd or Yugoslavia.

Of course London needs to grow eastwards, and these areas need regenerating. But the funding and powers of the Thames Gateway Executive should pass to the organisation set up by the Government to deliver regeneration in this area, the currently under-resourced London Thames Gateway Development Corporation. That corporation should be made

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accountable to the mayor, while embracing the involvement of the boroughs and, most importantly, their communities. Then public money will be targeted where it is most needed, taking account of local people’s needs and aspirations. Private investors will then gain the confidence to produce plans for a vibrant, flourishing east London.

12.30 pm

Lord Haworth: My Lords, I am grateful to the noble Lord, Lord Mawson, for allowing me the opportunity to speak in this debate about the regeneration of what he rightly described as the fragmented and desolate river valley that the Lower Lea Valley is. My only qualification for speaking is that I lived for more than 20 years in the Lower Lea Valley in Old Ford. I may be one of the very few Members of your Lordships’ House who has lived for such an extensive period of time in the area in question. Not only did I live at Old Ford for more than 20 years, I was married at Bromley-by-Bow registry office. When I participated in part, which is rather a long time ago, I used to play squash regularly on a Monday morning at Eton Manor, a facility that the Lea Valley Park Authority provided in those days. So I know the area fairly well.

Our house was in Tower Hamlets but less than a minute’s walk from Hackney and probably only three minutes’ walk from the London Borough of Newham. Hackney Wick station, one of the most desolate places on the railway network which for years has been unmanned—not only was no one selling tickets at the station, there was not even a machine from which you could buy a ticket—was my local railway station.

Some 15 years before living there, in the very early 1970s, my first connection with what is now very much in the centre of the Olympic park was as part of a working party of the governors of North-East London Polytechnic when I was the student representative. We were anxiously searching for a site to build housing on for students and young persons because there was an acute accommodation shortage for students at North-East London Poly and other educational institutions in the early 1970s. I vividly remember identifying a football field at Clays Lane as a suitable place to build relatively inexpensive social housing, which was to be organised on a co-operative basis for students from the polytechnic and other young local authority workers and the like. The problem with that site was that the overhead power cables, which are shortly to be removed from the Olympic site, meant that we could not build our flats higher than two stories.

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