Despite the nay-sayers, we did it! Team GB achieved, winning a record number of Gold medals, and Britain delivered, putting on a fantastic Olympic games. I would like to congratulate Chester’s very own Olympic medallists; Tom James, Beth Tweddle, and Chris Bartley, as well as all those who competed. Also the scores of volunteers, police, and members of our armed forces from Chester who helped make these such a successful games.
So, the races are over, the medals have been won, the athletes have all departed; but what is left after a fantastic two weeks of the London Olympics? What will the legacy be from these Olympics games?
Firstly, these games will help to create a sporting legacy, which will hopefully last well into the future. It is encouraging to see that so many people, of all ages, have taken such a keen interest and are now keen to get involved themselves. It is important that we harness this desire and potential, especially amongst our young, by encouraging them in sport. To this end, the Government is working to restore competitive sport back into our schools and has made a long-term commitment to sport by promising to continue to fund Team GB and high-level sport at London 2012 levels.
Also, by putting on such a successful Olympics we have raised the profile of the UK across the world. London and the wider UK provided a fantastic backdrop to these Olympic Games, which were seen by a worldwide audience. The benefits that this will bring to our tourism industry cannot and must not be underestimated. Following the example of Sydney and Barcelona, we must build on this fantastic PR opportunity and ensure that we reap the benefits for years to come. I am confident that these games have helped to restore the UK to the international ‘dream destination’ list.
Finally, we have demonstrated to the world the competency of the UK. We are a nation that can get the job done and deliver! Throughout the Games the Government launched the largest ever push for business, demonstrating to overseas companies and governments that ‘UK plc’ is very much open for business and the best possible place to invest.
The Olympic Games have put the UK very much back in the spotlight, we have demonstrated we are capable of great things, and hopefully we will reap the rewards for years to come.