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Olympics ground work begins at Greenwich Park


Plans to host equestrian events at Greenwich Park have divided local residents

After years of concerns about the use of Greenwich Park for the 2012 Olympics, ground work for equestrian events is now under way.

Small white tufts have been staked out to mark out the route of the cross country course and some areas have been sectioned off for ground development.

It's going to be very important that Britain is shown at its best and I can't think of a better place than Greenwich Park
Neville Grant

Editor of Westcombe News, a local community newspaper in the Olympic borough, Neville Grant has covered many stories about the use of the park in the Olympics.

"There's no doubt there's going to be an awful lot of disruption and inconvenience and a lot of people will regard it as a huge nuisance.

'Healthy state'

"But many of us think that actually it's not our park, it belongs to the nation and the least we can do is share it with the world for a few short weeks in 2012," he said.

Neville said some residents would not be happy with the preparations and fencing being put up: "A lot of people will be very irritated by this because they won't be able to walk on that bit of the park.

"The ground looks terrible at the moment but if you look closely they're re-seeding it so that the course will really be in a healthy state for the Olympics.

"It's going to be very important that Britain is shown at its best and I can't think of a better place than Greenwich Park."

The equestrian events were given the go-ahead to take place in the park in March 2010.

Neville is a contributor to BBC London's "2012 Lives" project. He's one of a number of people who will tell their own stories of how the 2012 Olympics is affecting their lives in the build-up to the Games.

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