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Page last updated at 08:05 GMT, Wednesday, 27 July 2011 09:05 UK

Olympics 'will be a great success'


In exactly a year, the best athletes from around the globe will gather at London's Olympic Park for the opening ceremony of the 2012 Olympic Games.

John Armitt, chairman of the Olympic Delivery Authority, explained how "having a clear focus" and a bit of pressure was the secret to bringing in "the biggest regeneration in a single place since World War II" on time and within the budget.

"I am confident this will be a great success for London," he said.

But Olympic sceptic Simon Jenkins, a Guardian columnist, said it was easy to complete the "crazy project" on budget, if the budget was continually increased.

The only legacy of the games, he said, would be eight large "sheds" in London. "So you essentially have a nonsense. The question is what can you do with the nonsense? You can try and persuade people to go and use the sheds."

He added that it was "a poor comment on our politics that in order to regenerate a perfectly good park, you've got to spend £9bn."

But shadow Olympics minister Tessa Jowell insisted that the point of using this amount of public money was about being able to "regenerate East London" and to "inspire a generation of young people to play more sport."

"We learnt the lessons of Athens and Beijing and Atlanta and applied those lessons. These will be a legacy games."

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