In a House of Commons debate about the 2012 London Olympic Legacy this afternoon, Labour shadow minister Chris Bryant called for details of West Ham’s deal for the Olympic Stadium to be made public.
“The cost of transforming the venue into a stadium ready for football has reached £272 million: £15 million coming from West Ham, £1 million from UK Athletics, £40 million from Newham Council and £25 million from the Government. The overall spend on the venue will now top £700 million for the 54,000 seat arena—considerably more expensive per spectator than the £798 million lavished on the 90,000 capacity Wembley stadium. The project is now over budget by about £35 million, which comes close to the total cost of converting the City of Manchester stadium after the 2002 Commonwealth games. This has the feel, frankly, of a fiasco cooked up somewhere between the Mayor’s office, the Department for Culture, Media and Sport and the Treasury, which is why, in the interests of transparency, I urge the Government to publish the full details of West Ham’s secret deal as a matter of urgency” said Bryant to fellow MP’s.
London Mayor Boris Johnson and newly elected MP replied:
“It was indeed a mess cooked up between the Mayor, the Treasury and DCMS: it was the Labour Mayor, the Treasury under Alistair Darling and Gordon Brown who decided to go ahead with a stadium that was completely unsuitable for the purpose. Will the hon. Gentleman have the decency to admit this single fact?”
The full transcript can be found at http://www.parliament.uk/business/publications/hansard/commons/todays-commons-debates/read/unknown/782/