Olympics may mean £66million boost

LONDON'S 2012 Olympics could be worth up to £66 million to Suffolk's economy according to a new survey today.But if the county fails to make the most of the opportunity presented by the games, the economy could be drained and take years to recover.

LONDON'S 2012 Olympics could be worth up to £66 million to Suffolk's economy according to a new survey today.

But if the county fails to make the most of the opportunity presented by the games, the economy could be drained and take years to recover.

The blunt assessment was made by the East of England Development Agency (EEDA) in an economic impact study - and now members of the county council are considering how to make the most of the county's opportunities.

The county's cabinet has endorsed the business plan seeking to attract investment to the area as part of the Olympic events which are coming to east London in five and a half years time.


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County council leader Jeremy Pembroke said: “Suffolk is very well placed to benefit in a whole host of ways.

“Our proximity to east London makes us the ideal base for people visiting the games. Frankly it is easier to get to Stratford where the games are being held from Suffolk than it is from the south of the River Thames.”

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Fellow cabinet member Joanna Spicer said many people who visited the Olympics would not want to spend two weeks there - they would only visit them for one or two events and would then want to visit somewhere else.

“Suffolk is ideally placed to attract that kind of tourism, especially with all the heritage around here,” she said.

Mr Pembroke said the experience of some other places that had hosted Olympics, especially Barcelona who held the games in 1992, suggested that lasting benefits could ripple out in the years after the games and give a lasting boost to the area.

The Suffolk Partnership Group, comprising the county council and other bodies, proposes spending £135,000 a year over the next three years to build a business plan for the Olympics - £25,000 a year will come from the county council itself.

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