Britains sport bids slammed as amateurish

18 Oct 01
Patrick Carter, the businessman turned sporting power broker, has criticised Britain's ad hoc approach to hosting sporting events and called for the creation of a body to co-ordinate bidding strategy.

19 October 2001

Carter told the Culture, Media and Sport select committee on October 16 that the new body should form an overarching policy to guide future events. He was discussing his recommendation to shelve plans to build a stadium at Picketts Lock in north London at a cost of £87m to host the 2005 World Athletics Championship, a bid that London has now lost.

Carter told the committee: 'Clearly somebody has to do something if we are to bid for major events properly. They have not been properly costed and not properly thought out. We have to establish a major events group or agency that establishes a process to make sure the right questions are asked at the right time.'

The former Prison Service director described the typical British bidding process for the committee: 'What seems to be the procedure is that we start off, interest develops, we don't cost them properly, the nation gets embarrassed and the government pays – or chooses not to pay.'

Carter, who is expected to report on the national stadium imbroglio in the coming weeks, said Picketts Lock had only been 'the least worst site'.

Architect Rod Sheard told the committee that Wembley was not a feasible replacement for Picketts Lock as it would take at least 39 months to rebuild the stadium so it could host the athletics' event.


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