Monday, 6 June 2011

Gold Medal Farce

When it comes to cock ups, we Brits excel - make no mistake.

Last week, when the result for the London 2012 Olympic Ticket ballot was revealed, suspicions were aroused when an awful lot of people were texting into Radio Five Live saying they either had no tickets at all or a tiny proportion of what they applied for.

At that point, I thought there must be an awful lot of smug people who could not be bothered to text in that they were happy with their allocation. But as the days wore on it was becoming apparent that there were few people who were happy. Some people had tragically put a great deal of their savings aside to attend an event of a lifetime for all their family.

It is now revealed on the BBC website that over half of the 1.8 million people, some 55%, who applied for tickets in the ballot for 6.6 million public tickets did not get any tickets at all.

There will be a second ballot for the unsuccessful but no tickets remain for the opening and closing ceremonies. To boot, all the cheaper tickets have gone so for those in the second ballot they will not only pay for less popular sports but they will pay top dollar for them.

I have no idea how this was all done - in sessions the organisers say - but anecdotal feedback I have received seems to indicate it was complex, not through properly and did not give people enough chance to home in what they wanted. For some, the outcome after committing as much as £3,000 for a spread of events was two measly tickets to an as yet unknown event at £40 a pop.

For the showcase, prestigious event that this was meant to be for a fantastic celebration of sport, the first event was a complete farce. Unless of course you shell out for Corporate Sponsorship and boxes.

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