£68k cost of York's Olympic welcome

York Press: The Olympic torch passes through the streets of York, carried by Daniel Rodwell The Olympic torch passes through the streets of York, carried by Daniel Rodwell

ALMOST £68,000 of public money was spent on welcoming the Olympic torch and Paralympic lantern to York.

Figures released under the Freedom of Information Act show City of York Council paid £39,120 for barriers, road signs, fences and the trackway for the torch and lantern-bearers when the sporting symbols passed through the city this summer.

The authority also spent £8,861 on staffing, stewarding and security and £7,000 to hire facilities at York Racecourse for the culmination of the torch relay on June 19, which saw 23,412 people attend a celebration concert.

A further 55,000 people are estimated to have lined the torch route, with the council saying at the time that city-centre footfall on that day was 25 per cent higher than normal.

The £67,934 bill for both events includes £3,862 for entertainment and other “special activities”, £2,807 on advertising and publicity and £3,024 on first aid, but just £260 was spent on artists’ and performers’ fees.

Sponsors donated £1,600 towards the trackway costs and tourism body Welcome to Yorkshire made a £200 contribution towards staging the York events.

In its response to the FOI request, the council said parking for the finale of the torch relay was provided free at the racecourse and residents and visitors were unable to use St George’s Field car park that day due to the need to accommodate vehicles from LOCOG, the Olympic and Paralympic organising committee.

Related links

This meant parking income for the day of the torch event did not rise, and an agreement with LOCOG also “precluded the selling of any advertising space”.

“The benefit to the local community was a programme of schools, community and voluntary sports club activities, two fantastic community events, increases in sports club membership – including a huge rise in disabled sports activity – and two days when the city really buzzed,” said the response.

The council said it did not hold information about the policing costs for the two events. The Press reported last month that North Yorkshire Police could face a £215,000 overtime bill this year, with the cost of providing officers to patrol the torch and lantern processions and the Games themselves contributing to this.

Comments (25)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

9:44am Wed 21 Nov 12

bob the builder says...

I suspect £283000 is the tip of the iceberg, factor in losses to non retail business due to disruption, travel disruption, there must have been a decrease in areas of the retail sector, then there are things you can't put a price on like disruption to education. To summarise I expect a net fiscal deficit for York from the Olympics. Poliiticians can use events like this to mask bad news and activities, but the net result is financial and longer lasting than their careers.
I suspect £283000 is the tip of the iceberg, factor in losses to non retail business due to disruption, travel disruption, there must have been a decrease in areas of the retail sector, then there are things you can't put a price on like disruption to education. To summarise I expect a net fiscal deficit for York from the Olympics. Poliiticians can use events like this to mask bad news and activities, but the net result is financial and longer lasting than their careers. bob the builder

9:59am Wed 21 Nov 12

Sawday2 says...

Good to see that the Council is not wasting money.
Good to see that the Council is not wasting money. Sawday2

10:02am Wed 21 Nov 12

pedalling paul says...

The other side of the debate is that York has had an incredible amount of world wide media exposure, which can only benefit the local economy.
The other side of the debate is that York has had an incredible amount of world wide media exposure, which can only benefit the local economy. pedalling paul

10:11am Wed 21 Nov 12

atorycouncil2014 says...

pedalling paul wrote:
The other side of the debate is that York has had an incredible amount of world wide media exposure, which can only benefit the local economy.
Really. The torch was everywhere sometimes it seems even twice. Any impact it may have had was incredibly diluted. Even on Calendar news it shared the limelight with three other Yorkshire cities. I don't think it even made the national news.

Having the torch for people to see was inspirational for younger generations. Could this have been done without spending £68k. YES
[quote][p][bold]pedalling paul [/bold] wrote: The other side of the debate is that York has had an incredible amount of world wide media exposure, which can only benefit the local economy.[/p][/quote]Really. The torch was everywhere sometimes it seems even twice. Any impact it may have had was incredibly diluted. Even on Calendar news it shared the limelight with three other Yorkshire cities. I don't think it even made the national news. Having the torch for people to see was inspirational for younger generations. Could this have been done without spending £68k. YES atorycouncil2014

10:18am Wed 21 Nov 12

roskoboskovic says...

trust the idiot to pipe up.we always hear that things will benefit the local economy but the people it definitely doesn t benefit are york residents.if you ve got a burger van,an ice cream outlet or maybe a pub you ll have seen a rise in takings that day otherwise the benefit to us is zilch.
trust the idiot to pipe up.we always hear that things will benefit the local economy but the people it definitely doesn t benefit are york residents.if you ve got a burger van,an ice cream outlet or maybe a pub you ll have seen a rise in takings that day otherwise the benefit to us is zilch. roskoboskovic

10:51am Wed 21 Nov 12

Zetkin says...

So, it looks like the real Olympic legacy will be enjoyed by very few people, such as Lord Coe, whose IOC career and massive personal wealth took a giant leap forward, and the middle-eastern billionaire who bought the Olympic Village at half what it cost to build.

Nice work if you can get it.
So, it looks like the real Olympic legacy will be enjoyed by very few people, such as Lord Coe, whose IOC career and massive personal wealth took a giant leap forward, and the middle-eastern billionaire who bought the Olympic Village at half what it cost to build. Nice work if you can get it. Zetkin

11:20am Wed 21 Nov 12

GooseTrackLane says...

While there may have been little long-term benefit, had York refused to welcome the torch, THAT would have made national news and would have had a negative effect on the city.

The Olympics are unlikely to return to the UK within the lifetime of the miserable few who would rather grumble and moan about anything that costs a few quid - so you can all get back to the things you do best: grumbling about cycle lanes and fortnightly bin collections.
While there may have been little long-term benefit, had York refused to welcome the torch, THAT would have made national news and would have had a negative effect on the city. The Olympics are unlikely to return to the UK within the lifetime of the miserable few who would rather grumble and moan about anything that costs a few quid - so you can all get back to the things you do best: grumbling about cycle lanes and fortnightly bin collections. GooseTrackLane

11:28am Wed 21 Nov 12

jadestars says...

GooseTrackLane wrote:
While there may have been little long-term benefit, had York refused to welcome the torch, THAT would have made national news and would have had a negative effect on the city. The Olympics are unlikely to return to the UK within the lifetime of the miserable few who would rather grumble and moan about anything that costs a few quid - so you can all get back to the things you do best: grumbling about cycle lanes and fortnightly bin collections.
Well Said!
[quote][p][bold]GooseTrackLane[/bold] wrote: While there may have been little long-term benefit, had York refused to welcome the torch, THAT would have made national news and would have had a negative effect on the city. The Olympics are unlikely to return to the UK within the lifetime of the miserable few who would rather grumble and moan about anything that costs a few quid - so you can all get back to the things you do best: grumbling about cycle lanes and fortnightly bin collections.[/p][/quote]Well Said! jadestars

12:07pm Wed 21 Nov 12

Von_Dutch says...

If the Lord Almighty (if such a thing existed) were to descend from the heavens into York City Centre to grant residents everlasting peace and joy, i'm sure people on here would just whinge about the disruption to traffic flow and waste of council tax payers money to police the thing...

Seriously though, this was a once in a lifetime thing (albeit a bit of an anticlimax). I'll never see another olympic torch relay in York. I really don't begrudge my tax going on this and £68K isn't all that bad in my view for a well known city such as ours.
If the Lord Almighty (if such a thing existed) were to descend from the heavens into York City Centre to grant residents everlasting peace and joy, i'm sure people on here would just whinge about the disruption to traffic flow and waste of council tax payers money to police the thing... Seriously though, this was a once in a lifetime thing (albeit a bit of an anticlimax). I'll never see another olympic torch relay in York. I really don't begrudge my tax going on this and £68K isn't all that bad in my view for a well known city such as ours. Von_Dutch

12:17pm Wed 21 Nov 12

NoNewsIsGoodNews says...

GooseTrackLane says...
11:20am Wed 21 Nov 12
While there may have been little long-term benefit, had York refused to welcome the torch, THAT would have made national news and would have had a negative effect on the city.


That makes it sound like we were blackmailed into having the torch.

I for one was pleased to have experienced seeing the torch pass through York.
[quote] GooseTrackLane says... 11:20am Wed 21 Nov 12 While there may have been little long-term benefit, had York refused to welcome the torch, THAT would have made national news and would have had a negative effect on the city.[/quote] That makes it sound like we were blackmailed into having the torch. I for one was pleased to have experienced seeing the torch pass through York. NoNewsIsGoodNews

12:43pm Wed 21 Nov 12

Jackanory2 says...

OMG, this really does show that if people on here can moan about the Olympics there isn't any hope for anything. OK maybe the 68k was money we won't see again, but neither will the torch or the spectacle that was the Olympics, it was fantastic, if you disagree, you need to see someone about removing your misery bone.
OMG, this really does show that if people on here can moan about the Olympics there isn't any hope for anything. OK maybe the 68k was money we won't see again, but neither will the torch or the spectacle that was the Olympics, it was fantastic, if you disagree, you need to see someone about removing your misery bone. Jackanory2

12:49pm Wed 21 Nov 12

Hicarrumba says...

Cost each tax payer about 50p get over it
Cost each tax payer about 50p get over it Hicarrumba

12:59pm Wed 21 Nov 12

clockwatcher says...

My family and I were thrilled to have been a part of the whole Olympic thing, we lined the street in kings square and my young family were very excited. It was once in a life time for us. This set everything up nicely for our trip to see the olympics in London. We were extremely proud to be a part of it, we are not rich, by any stretch of the imagination but it was money well spent, and finally am happy to have contributed via my council tax to allow this event to pass our way.
My family and I were thrilled to have been a part of the whole Olympic thing, we lined the street in kings square and my young family were very excited. It was once in a life time for us. This set everything up nicely for our trip to see the olympics in London. We were extremely proud to be a part of it, we are not rich, by any stretch of the imagination but it was money well spent, and finally am happy to have contributed via my council tax to allow this event to pass our way. clockwatcher

1:31pm Wed 21 Nov 12

xtc says...

Sawday2 wrote:
Good to see that the Council is not wasting money.
Yeah good to see they re carrying on the good work,wasting our cash on that what next eh?.
[quote][p][bold]Sawday2[/bold] wrote: Good to see that the Council is not wasting money.[/p][/quote]Yeah good to see they re carrying on the good work,wasting our cash on that what next eh?. xtc

1:56pm Wed 21 Nov 12

beretta says...

Von_Dutch wrote:
If the Lord Almighty (if such a thing existed) were to descend from the heavens into York City Centre to grant residents everlasting peace and joy, i'm sure people on here would just whinge about the disruption to traffic flow and waste of council tax payers money to police the thing... Seriously though, this was a once in a lifetime thing (albeit a bit of an anticlimax). I'll never see another olympic torch relay in York. I really don't begrudge my tax going on this and £68K isn't all that bad in my view for a well known city such as ours.
£68,000 isn't that bad I agree, But £68,000 would have given 3 men jobs for a year, that sounds like £68,000 better spent to me.
[quote][p][bold]Von_Dutch[/bold] wrote: If the Lord Almighty (if such a thing existed) were to descend from the heavens into York City Centre to grant residents everlasting peace and joy, i'm sure people on here would just whinge about the disruption to traffic flow and waste of council tax payers money to police the thing... Seriously though, this was a once in a lifetime thing (albeit a bit of an anticlimax). I'll never see another olympic torch relay in York. I really don't begrudge my tax going on this and £68K isn't all that bad in my view for a well known city such as ours.[/p][/quote]£68,000 isn't that bad I agree, But £68,000 would have given 3 men jobs for a year, that sounds like £68,000 better spent to me. beretta

2:01pm Wed 21 Nov 12

gmc_1963 says...

Well worth it
Stop moaning
Well worth it Stop moaning gmc_1963

2:22pm Wed 21 Nov 12

TerryYork says...

Yet over 10,000 saw York City's double success parade and that cost nothing.

I know which one meant the most to me and it wasn't the joggers.
Yet over 10,000 saw York City's double success parade and that cost nothing. I know which one meant the most to me and it wasn't the joggers. TerryYork

4:53pm Wed 21 Nov 12

SamYCFC says...

Stop putting a cost on everything. just enjoy these great occasions.

Stop moaning.
Stop putting a cost on everything. just enjoy these great occasions. Stop moaning. SamYCFC

6:29pm Wed 21 Nov 12

CaroleBaines says...

pedalling paul wrote:
The other side of the debate is that York has had an incredible amount of world wide media exposure, which can only benefit the local economy.
Absolutely right. Always makes me laugh how people fall for these Press attempts to stir up outrage. Dangle some pretty, uncontextualised figures in front of some people and they go for it every time. York needs to host events, this will cost some pounds and some pence. Get over it
[quote][p][bold]pedalling paul [/bold] wrote: The other side of the debate is that York has had an incredible amount of world wide media exposure, which can only benefit the local economy.[/p][/quote]Absolutely right. Always makes me laugh how people fall for these Press attempts to stir up outrage. Dangle some pretty, uncontextualised figures in front of some people and they go for it every time. York needs to host events, this will cost some pounds and some pence. Get over it CaroleBaines

6:32pm Wed 21 Nov 12

CaroleBaines says...

TerryYork wrote:
Yet over 10,000 saw York City's double success parade and that cost nothing.

I know which one meant the most to me and it wasn't the joggers.
I very much doubt nothing. Staffing, police, bollards,barriers, traffic diverting. Was there not a buffet after too? Joggers to you maybe but YCFC are pigs bladder kickers to others. Go with the flow, we all like different things.
[quote][p][bold]TerryYork[/bold] wrote: Yet over 10,000 saw York City's double success parade and that cost nothing. I know which one meant the most to me and it wasn't the joggers.[/p][/quote]I very much doubt nothing. Staffing, police, bollards,barriers, traffic diverting. Was there not a buffet after too? Joggers to you maybe but YCFC are pigs bladder kickers to others. Go with the flow, we all like different things. CaroleBaines

7:28pm Wed 21 Nov 12

I'mALaydee says...

SamYCFC wrote:
Stop putting a cost on everything. just enjoy these great occasions.

Stop moaning.
I agree. This was a once in a lifetime thing for most people. My family and I thoroughly enjoyed it and won't ever forget it and you can't put a price on that. Stop whining!
[quote][p][bold]SamYCFC[/bold] wrote: Stop putting a cost on everything. just enjoy these great occasions. Stop moaning.[/p][/quote]I agree. This was a once in a lifetime thing for most people. My family and I thoroughly enjoyed it and won't ever forget it and you can't put a price on that. Stop whining! I'mALaydee

7:28pm Wed 21 Nov 12

I'mALaydee says...

SamYCFC wrote:
Stop putting a cost on everything. just enjoy these great occasions.

Stop moaning.
I agree. This was a once in a lifetime thing for most people. My family and I thoroughly enjoyed it and won't ever forget it and you can't put a price on that. Stop whining!
[quote][p][bold]SamYCFC[/bold] wrote: Stop putting a cost on everything. just enjoy these great occasions. Stop moaning.[/p][/quote]I agree. This was a once in a lifetime thing for most people. My family and I thoroughly enjoyed it and won't ever forget it and you can't put a price on that. Stop whining! I'mALaydee

8:26pm Wed 21 Nov 12

fear your government says...

a torch getting carried around the country....what a load of nonsense.
see it for what it really is.
a torch getting carried around the country....what a load of nonsense. see it for what it really is. fear your government

7:07am Thu 22 Nov 12

Kelly Smunt says...

Money well spent which doesn't even need justifying.

However, I'm sure it wouldn't take many people to get sufficiently inspired to adopt a healthier lifestyle and take some exercise to realise a saving. How much is spent on health costs in York for self inflicted ailments due to lack of exercise, smoking and lumps of lard stuffing junk food down their bloated necks?
Money well spent which doesn't even need justifying. However, I'm sure it wouldn't take many people to get sufficiently inspired to adopt a healthier lifestyle and take some exercise to realise a saving. How much is spent on health costs in York for self inflicted ailments due to lack of exercise, smoking and lumps of lard stuffing junk food down their bloated necks? Kelly Smunt

2:46pm Thu 22 Nov 12

Justanotheropinion says...

I saw it pass Clifford's tower. It did absolutely nothing for me. Quite an expensive joke really. I've no issue with the games themselves but my life is no better for having seen a procession of buses go by, flanking a person in a naff tracksuit. The money would have been better spent elsewhere.
I saw it pass Clifford's tower. It did absolutely nothing for me. Quite an expensive joke really. I've no issue with the games themselves but my life is no better for having seen a procession of buses go by, flanking a person in a naff tracksuit. The money would have been better spent elsewhere. Justanotheropinion

Comments are closed on this article.

click2find

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree