The next Headstart day is about The Olympics. So I’m going to blog about them for the next couple of weeks and point you towards some interesting things to read.

* * *

Yesterday I went to visit an apple tree I like by The Greenway, but I was surprised to find it had been cut down as part of some construction work around the canal for a bridge or a path or something. I had planned to graft the tree and make cider from the apples and call it Olympic cider. Plan scuppered.

Here’s a bit of the tree with the stadium in the background in October.

This is the thing about the Olympics. You get something, you loose something and somehow you have to decide whether they’re a good thing or a bad thing. LOCOG pump information out on a daily basis telling us it’s the best thing that’s ever happened, while campaigners and activists at the butt-end of relocations, rent increases, paved over football pictches etc rage against it. Many of us are just left a bit confused, turn the page and wonder if there are any tickets left for the Paralympics.

So some things to read. This is quite a good synopsis  of the Olympic haters on lefty mag Red Pepper  – and here’s a story in the Hackney Citizen about a large chunk of Hackney Marshes football pitches being concreted over for a car park servicing the Olympics. Then there’s this more ambiguous piece by my friend Sam about the communities living closest to the park, weighing up the pros and cons of the games. And then for a more boosterish take on affairs – try this recent piece from the Evening Standard. They conclude:

If you plan your summer to take the Olympics into account, you could have a blast. If you don’t, you could be waiting for 30 minutes at London Bridge Tube station while snipers in helicopters circle menacingly overhead.


More to come.

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