I have written about the London Olympics and the spirit and achievement they represent, for the athletes, the volunteers and the organisers. They were wonderful and the Paralympics perhaps more so.
There is a separate set of issues which arise about the economic impact of The Games. The case for the London Olympics was largely based on the legacy and the economic benefits. To be critical of the economic case is not to be critical of the athletes nor the Olympics festival. One can celebrate The Games and query the economic costs. Any party costs, there is a legacy, the feel good factor and the bills.
Over the next few months we shall begin to see the economic costs.
According to the British Retail Consortium (BRC) retail sales in August fell 0.4% on a like-for-like basis from the same month last year. Stephen Robertson, BRC director general, summed up the survey findings: “There’s no evidence here of any Olympic boost to retail sales overall”
“Hot weather and the Olympics did help sales of party food and drink but that was more than offset by a really weak performance for non-food goods.”
Shops in central London saw a sharp drop in visitors during the Olympic Games. Read more
There are extended shopping hours for UK stores over 2800 sq m on Sundays during the Olympics – of course unless people go into debt, they can only spend what they have, however long the shops are open.
The position on Olympic Sponsor tax concessions is more complex. Read more