Protest over site in Greenwich for the Olympic equestrian events in 2012

  March 11, 2009 at 9:50 am by

A high-profile crusade has been launched to stop the Olympic equestrian events taking place at Greenwich in 2012. NOGOE accuses the London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games (LOCOG) of being “inconsistent and inept” and says that to close Greenwich Park for six to eight weeks while the cross-country course and a 23-seat arena are being built is “socially unjust in a relatively deprived inner-city area” and would cost £17 million.

The campaigners also raise concerns about damage to the turf, to ancient trees and to a Roman archaeological site, and points out that closing 44 roads and 27 bus routes.

Princess Haya, president of the International Equestrian Federation (FEI), has said that British negativity about Greenwich is damaging the sport, and she has highlighted the risk to equestrianism of staying within the Olympic movement. The FEI was quick to respond to NOGOE, saying: “We would like to reiterate our confidence in LOCOG to ensure that environmental considerations and the local community are placed at the top of the agenda.”

Zara Phillips has also been quoted this week as saying that the Olympic equestrian events should relocate to Windsor, a proven competition site that is hosting the European Jumping and Dressage Championships in August.

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