Photo: Marcus Yorke

The 2012 Paralympic Games have allowed Britons to revisit the euphoria of the Olympics, but the Games’ uncertain ‘legacy’ still loom over Stratford. When the area is no longer filled with the buzz of world-class athletes and excited fans, will the benefits promised to East London ever come to fruition? 

Ahead of our ecollection on the topic, we present the opinions of our experts, Anne Power, Tony Travers and Ricky Burdett, who discuss the ways to ensure a positive and lasting legacy is brought to East London and more widely, recession-weary Britain — from our archive. 

The Olympic investment in East London has barely scratched the surface of the area’s needs

Anne Power argues that the incredible amount of London 2012 money injected into one of the capital’s poorest neighbourhoods has largely bypassed the residents themselves. Much more besides new infrastructure needs to be done to improve Newham and other East London communities.


The Olympics have been a resounding success. But with a continuing gloomy economic outlook the glow will fade quickly

Tony Travers doesn’t believe the warm post-Olympic feeling will last. By October the economic and political realities will again be acutely felt.


The London Olympics – making a ‘piece of city’

Ricky Burdett discusses the Olympics’ ‘Great Leap Eastwards’ and argues that the city is on its way to improving on the pattern of social inequality. However, the journey will be long and fraught with challenges. City government needs to retain control and ownership of the land, and put in place checks and balances to ensure that land values and gentrification do not push existing communities in the vicinity out.

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