Select Committee on Culture, Media and Sport Minutes of Evidence


Examination of Witnesses (Questions 400 - 419)

TUESDAY 20 MARCH 2001

THE RT HON IAN MCCARTNEY MP, MR CHARLES ALLEN, COUNCILLOR RICHARD LEESE, MS FRANCES DONE, MR HOWARD BERNSTEIN AND MR ROBERT RAINE

  400. They stream all their radio broadcasts live on the Internet automatically, that just goes out, will they be stopped from doing that?  (Ms Done) I think what I have said applies both to radio and TV, yes. That does not mean to say that things will not develop because the ability to agree something subsequent to our original contract is still a possibility.

Derek Wyatt

  401. Good morning. I wonder if I could start with the Minister first. We recommended you, as it were, two years ago. If we were here again or say in another city and we said there should be another Minister, do you feel you should have a substantial budget? Is it a weakness that you have to go cap in hand across Government?  (Mr McCartney) Well, Mr Wyatt, everybody who knows me in the House of Commons says I am never somebody to go cap in hand over anything. I am, of course, the advocate for the Games within Government and as the advocate for the Games I am closely involved with all my colleagues whether it is DCMS, the Treasury or all the other departments who have got a direct input into the Games to ensure that happens in an effective way and where it is not my job to make sure it does. Within Government I am really the eyes and ears of the Prime Minister in ensuring we deliver what has been promised. As to the budget, already the Government is providing huge resources and my job is not a Chancellor of the Exchequer in that sense, my job is with the partnership to report to the Prime Minister issues around which I think the Government may wish to put further input. For example, when we did an initial review, following your review, we identified the need to put further resources into the opening and closing ceremonies. I did not need a budget to do that. I have arranged for that to be done through the appropriate department and I will continue that role. Therefore at the end of this review, which is the review leading up to the implementation stage, if there are other issues which arise from that where Government needs to make further input then my job is to advocate and do that, and so far so good. Ultimately it will be the day after the Games when you can then decide whether you were sensible to recommend me for the job or not, history will tell that. As it stands I do not have my hands tied behind my back, I do not have a zip in my mouth, I advocate very strongly within Government. My job is to deliver these Games and work for the partnership here and if that means occasionally standing on toes then toes will be stood on.

  402. Not an unsurprising answer. Let me try and tease it a bit further. It seems to me the inward investment is between £150 and 200 million in total build, infrastructure and so on, which again if I have done my calculations right means between £25 and £35 million VAT will go to the Treasury which is very comforting. It would be very nice if you could hypothecate the actual regeneration fund back into the system. This would be a very nice way, a neat way, of making sure you do have your own money as a Minister. Would you like to comment on that?  (Mr McCartney) Not really. If you give me the option I will say no. If you want to make recommendations with funding that is your duty. From my point of view my job is one of making sure the Government's input to the Games in whatever guise it is—logistical, financial or whatever—is maximised to ensure the Games are successful. That job will continue right up to the day of the Games and during the Games because there will be a role still to play during the ten days of the Games, there will be issues every day which will come up which the Government will need to respond to, and that will continue right through to the closing ceremony. As to the funding arrangements, we have a review at the moment which will take us to the 500 day strategy, and at the end of that review if issues of funding arise my role will be to advocate for those resources.

  403. You cannot believe everything you read in the press, I should know that best of all, but there was a story about a £20 million not deficit but difference between how much you might need and what you had. Mihir Bose had a story suggesting that perhaps the Government might actually pay this. I am not so interested in that but rather the tension. If the organisation always knows the Government is always there and is always going to have a cheque book, that makes it more difficult for a sponsorship department to try and get the money. On the other hand, these facilities are not just for Manchester, you have international facilities which will be used for world-class events—the swimming, the cycling—so there is a bigger picture than just beyond Manchester. So in an intelligent way how do you solve that and say, "If we are going to bid, the Government is at least going to put in X because it is going to get Y"?  (Mr McCartney) That is a very fair point and there is a tension in the sense that each of the partners has a role to play, but it is defining what that role is which is important. Having a transparent relationship and being able to have an effective system to deliver it quickly and to cut out as much bureaucracy as possible is important. But when you deal with resources, whether it is the planning of resources or the allocation of resources, it is critically important from two perspectives, that there is value for money, that we are able to put a business case for each investment we want to make, and nobody around this table in the partnership wants to do it in any other way. Secondly, in making investments, the critical factor is to try and maximise the partnership in terms of sponsorship. There is not a global event organised now where there is not a tri-partite approach. The Government usually pays for the infrastructure, the private sector the fund-raising resources, and income stream comes from the Games organisers, which helps to sustain the income levels. Another element, of course, is the partnership and the management structure to deliver the Games, and that is what has happened here. I have absolutely no doubt that when we do our review, issues will arise which will need to be dealt with and dealt with quickly and effectively. That is where we are up to. As to any level of further funding, I would not speculate on that. I see what the media says but my job is not to speculate, my job is to get this review completed and at the end of the review see what additional logistics have to be put in, is additional finance required, and then to sit down with the partnership and colleagues in Government and ensure we deliver.

  404. When we had the Rugby World Cup in 1999, one of the problems was it was felt in London this was a Welsh event rather than a world event. It was very difficult in London to focus. The Welsh decided not to have a London office. In the same sense, this is felt to be a British event and an English event and a Manchester event, on the other hand though London has absolutely no presence, there is no understanding this is going on. I wonder, given you have British Council offices and there are British Council offices in London, whether there is a role in having a physical presence, because we cannot drop in on Manchester, you have 11 million people in London—well, you understand what I am getting at. Is a greater focus going to occur so that the London media are better informed and we are better informed?  (Mr Allen) I think that is a very good question. One of the other things we learned from Sydney is that it was not until six weeks out from the Sydney experience that the whole of Australia owned the event. One of the things which was incredibly successful was the torch going round the country to basically ignite people's passions as such, and that is something we want to do here with the Queen's Baton Relay, to have 5,000 people involved, with the baton going round the country, in fact going round the Commonwealth, so it will touch 95 per cent of the population because they will be within an hour's drive of an event, and really build that process. We have in place a number of things which we think will be very useful in building that. I think a presence in London is an important point and it is part of our planning in terms of whether we should have a greater presence there. The issue of the media is that we do not want to peak too early and therefore there is quite a detailed communications process, and the Baton Relay is an important part of that overall communication, and the programme of events and the openings, be it the volunteer programme, the launch of our education programme, the elements of the whole festival. Frankly, if you were to over-communicate too quickly, the population would forget about some of the things. So it is a programme which will build. You will see it build in the summer and, more importantly, build into 2002 as part of the whole communication programme.

  405. We were in Australia in January 1999 and there were Olympic stores in Melbourne and Brisbane as well as Sydney and not just around the site in Sydney—they were down by the waterfront and so on. One of the things we said about the Dome as a Committee was we could not feel it and touch it until it was built, and we recommended there ought to have been merchandising shops all over the place so that people felt what it was, but that never happened. I guess I am going over similar territory I have just asked, but there is a feeling that here you are, you know what it is about, but we cannot touch it, kids do not have the jigsaws, there is not a pop-up book. Can you give us an indication of when those will come on stream and whether you have a retail outlet arranged, perhaps an M&S or Debenhams or something?  (Ms Done) There is a fair amount of work going on now and it will start to be seen very soon on the whole merchandising programme. We will have a whole range of merchandising available by the time we get to one year out, 25 July 2001. We will be opening a store in Manchester. I take the point, it is a good idea to think about having a presence in London in that way, and we will certainly be looking at that. You will see the effect of the whole build of our PR, communications and marketing from within a couple of months' time, and it does require building around the country to make sure that everybody, not just in Manchester and the North West, is really excited about this. There is the launch of the ticketing programme in the autumn, which is part of the merchandising, and there is the web site which is very much the means of communication these days. I have teenage sons and they do not find out about anything except through web sites and this is something we need to be very conscious of. We have started to heavily promote our web site which was relaunched last Monday, on Commonwealth Day. It has been received very well and that will go and build and build over the period to the Games. One of the important things we have to crack is publicising the existence of that web site because the more you do that, the more people get to know about the Games wherever they are, whether in the Isles of Scilly or in Northern Ireland.

  406. I was interviewed this week and asked what my five favourite web sites were—it is on Sky tomorrow—and yours was one of them. It is a very good site.  (Mr Allen) Thank you very much!

  407. Coming back to the boards, you have 2002 Limited and Commonwealth Games Limited. What are the differences?  (Mr Allen) Basically there are two boards. One is to manage the detailed business reviews, so effectively the board can go through in a lot of detail the sponsorship, the venue overlay planning, the manpower planning, and that board will be much more involved in the detail. The broader board is to use the experience from the world of sport and from the commercial world to advise. So one is more of an advisory board. 2002 is more an operating board.

  408. In looking at the board structure, I notice in 2002 Limited there is no one formally from DCMS although I see there is an observer. We talked about this before with the Dome which, although it had some criticism, was built on time and opened on time whatever the actual problems were on the night, which of itself was a hell of an achievement, and we do not want to lose all that expertise. We have seen big projects going wrong—you only have to look at Wembley. Do you feel either board has enough of a Government presence? How do we pick it up in Whitehall or are you quietly confident that is how it should be?  (Mr Allen) I think as well as the board structure there is the daily contact across the partners. We have the formal board review process, which I think has the appropriate representation, but probably more important than that is the daily issues where the management team, the City Council and the Government are literally in daily contact. What has happened recently is that has been strengthened with Robert's appointment, with the City being involved in a lot of the detail, there is daily contact on issues, and that is the practical way we will resolve issues. Rather than wait for a formal board meeting the issues are being dealt with on a daily basis. Certainly from my perspective that is the best way to deal with it rather than have a very formal process that waits for a month to decide an issue. We are making decisions with the partners on a daily basis.

  409. This is a huge undertaking. We all know it is the biggest sporting event we have ever held. It is a fantastic regeneration project too, I congratulate you on that. What have you learned that you would not do again already?  (Councillor Leese) I am not sure that is something we would want to confess to. I suppose one answer would be we would not bid next time; actually we would because I think already the benefits have far exceeded any sort of investment. It is a big complicated process and there are a number of areas where we have made mistakes as we have gone along. I think there was an assumption made early on, for example, that we would be able to find a lot of the expertise from in-house, and I think we have discovered that really we need to have more people with hands on experience of all kinds in a multi-sport event of this sort. As Charles Allen referred to that is why we have brought more people in from Sydney and elsewhere who have hands on experience. We have also had people who have had Victoria and Atlanta experience as well within the overall team. That is a mistake and we have put it right. I think the process at the moment is that we are putting mistakes right in plenty of time to make sure that we do open on time because we do not even have an option on that, the Games do have to start on a certain day. That is the sort of area of things that we would want to deal with differently.  (Mr Allen) To reiterate, I think in terms of looking at the broader issue of hosting international sports events, then frankly if you thought of it strategically you would want to have a caravan of people who literally go around the globe. I think there is a big missed opportunity there in terms of not having that caravan of people in place which gives you the core thing. I think my experience is that Sydney found that, we have found that. We seem to reinvent the wheel every time. I think there should be a core of people who could be part of that in a strategic sense who would literally go around and help because I think that would fast track a lot of the learning. Certainly from an operating perspective that would be something we picked up in terms of having a core caucus of people who literally travel the globe. You would then have to localise it but they could give you that fast track and point you in the right direction early on.

Mrs Organ

  410. Mr Maxton asked about television rights and I wonder if I could ask Frances Done a few more questions about that. Why did you terminate your contract and relationship with IMG? Was it because there was a problem with selling the Games?  (Ms Done) Well, when one starts something like this, you have to make a decision about taking on advisers and that was what was done at the time, a certain decision was taken to take IMG on. A fair amount of work was done with them but at each stage when you have consultants who advise you, you have to keep under review whether you think the results you are getting are the ones you feel are appropriate. During the course of last year we reviewed all our consultancy arrangements both in relation to television rights and sponsorship rights and we made a decision to change the way in which we were dealing with them. That was what we did and we have changed our approach to dealing with both television and sponsorship. We are very satisfied with the new arrangements. In fact I think the fact that we are now, 17 months out, able to tell you that we have a committed commercial income of £30 million, which is substantially more than the whole proceeds of the Rugby World Cup or the Cricket World Cup in 1999 demonstrates that we took the right decision.

  411. You said in December last year that "we are on target about television rights and television negotiations will be sorted out by next spring as scheduled". It is now into that spring, are they all sorted out?  (Ms Done) We have made very great progress. As I mentioned Channel 7 television, TV NZ, ABC, we are now negotiating the Asian contract. Yes, I would say we are on target actually. We have had a very successful World Broadcasters Conference which was hosted by the BBC in Manchester, obviously supported very much by our team. Those broadcasters from all over the Commonwealth went back incredibly impressed, as I hope you were yesterday, when they saw the stadium, Aquatic Centre, and all the other venues because they went to see every single one. These are people who are very experienced, very hard bitten, they have been everywhere and done everything and yet they are extremely impressed with the preparations we are making. We expect to see them back in October for the next rights' holders conference and by that time we will definitely have signed up the remaining rights' holders. The bulk of the deals we have done we are very satisfied with the outcome.

  412. At the onset what was your expected income from the sale of television rights?  (Ms Done) We have always taken a view that the target that we were working to of commercial input of £62 million was a composite figure because although views could be taken at various stages of what the likely outcome would be on sponsorship or ticketing or merchandising or TV rights, the individual components could only be the best guess at any particular time. We have never taken a view that we would succeed or fail by comparing what we actually get against those individual targets. My team, and I have a very effective commercial team, take the view that the aim in life is to raise the whole sum of money. They are working very hard on that on a daily basis. We are very optimistic about the outcome. I do not think comparisons of individual elements are very helpful at all and we do not discuss this.

  413. You are saying that in the ball park figure of the £62 million you never worked out a percentage or a target for what could be delivered from TV rights within that? It was anything between £1 million and £61 million, you must have had an element within that you expected to get from TV rights?  (Ms Done) Of course a view was taken but a different view has been taken at different stages bearing in mind the state of the market place. In many ways those different elements, as we have moved towards the implementation phase, as the Minister said, we are able to take a much more upbeat view on some elements. To us it is very important and it is extremely important in terms of maintaining confidentiality of our deals with all our commercial partners that we talk in global figures. I am sure the Committee would respect that because we would have no credibility whatsoever in the market place if any of the information comes out about the sums of money, whether they are TV rights' holders or sponsors or partners, if we lose our credibility in that market place we will not succeed in selling further commercial relationships and that would be very, very unfortunate for the Games.  (Mr Allen) Could I just add to that. The issues are inter-related in terms of who your television partnership is and the level of sponsorship. For example, going with Channel 7 in Australia is good news because it also helps us in the sponsorship negotiations. There is a play off there in terms of what level of coverage, what rights' coverage. One of the things which influenced us in our decision in terms of Channel 7 was its tremendous success in terms of what it did in Sydney and the fact that it had firstly the air time and secondly the capability of broadening the profile, giving us more hours of coverage which then helps in terms of sponsorships. Although you may put it in a box the two—and this is from my experience in the industry—are absolutely inter-related in terms of the rights versus the sponsorship that you may get for those rights. It is a play off between the two.

  414. Given that you have secured some negotiated deals already, what percentage do you think so far you have achieved of your total income that you could get from television rights at this point?  (Ms Done) I think the major deals have been done. We are now seeking to make sure that we sell the remaining deals to the appropriate rights' holders across the rest of the Commonwealth. I think that is all I would want to say. It is not for us to give any impression to the outside world about how we see subsequent deals. The point I made is completely valid which is we look at our £62 million target as a target as a whole. For example we would not be complacent even if we had reached any pre-arranged or pre-thought individual subsidiary targets because that is not the point. What we want to do for this City is make sure we raise the whole of that £62 million if we possibly can.

  Mrs Organ: Can I just move on to another point. Yesterday we were shown the site where the village will be. We did have to use our imagination somewhat because at the present it looks like a very English cricket pavilion, a lot of sports fields and bits of tarmac where we were told "Here will be the marquee for the reception".

  Chairman: You are talking about the Gorton division.

Mrs Organ

  415. Beautiful though it was at present we do have to use our imagination for how it will be when it is a village. Now to a certain extent we are rather concerned about this because in the CGSF Evaluation Team Conclusions when they visited earlier on in November 2000 they made the point that athletes, particularly world class athletes, have an expectation of the kind of accommodation and facilities they can expect because the standards of villages both at Olympic and Commonwealth Games previously have been very high. Do you believe you can meet those standards?  (Mr Allen) We have had some very good visits from the individual chef de missions who feel, because of the way it is structured, there is an opportunity. There is a lot of dressing to be done and the key thing will be how people feel when they come here. What has actually happened in the last three to four years is expectations have been raised because of Sydney, because of Kuala Lumpur, but the key thing for the athletes is the atmosphere which is created, and one of the things we are fairly confident about is we will be able to create a very warm, very friendly set of Games which the athletes feel comfortable with. There is attention to detail in terms of accommodation and food. The accommodation manager who managed Sydney is managing our accommodation, so there is a real understanding of what is really important. What has happened over the last couple of years—and this is part of the 500 day review—is we have looked at what more we could do and what more could we afford within that process. The detail of that is something we are asking those people who were responsible for providing accommodation in KL and in Sydney to look at with their expert eye and tell us in detail what needs to be done. That is part of this 500 day implementation. We have been through the planning phase, we know the structures, we know what needs to be done, but what is very important is this detailed implementation. Our own people are feeling confident they can create the right environment. People will look at the Games, people will look at the village, but what is going to be really important is the people and the atmosphere we create, and that is not just about bricks and mortar.

  416. Given that is very important, that people want to feel this friendly and safe environment, there are some very basic things which people will expect. For instance, will you be able to provide en-suite facilities for all athletes? Will all the teams be able to be put together? Will all of them, whatever the numbers, be able to be kept on one site? Are those practical things which people would expect deliverable?  (Ms Done) The sites you saw yesterday will be able to accommodate about 4,800 athletes and team officials, and the intention is that they will be accommodated in their teams, and that is exactly how they want it, of course. They have to have bedrooms, obviously, bathrooms, showers, they have to have team rooms and rooms for medical teams, and there is a very complex planning process going on now to make sure we fit all the different teams into different spaces so they can all be together. The point made in the CGF Evaluation Report is a very valid one, which is that the challenge of that site is that the standard of accommodation is very variable, and that is bound to be the case because it is a student village which was built up from a long time ago, 1968, when there were very few blocks on that site, and now we have some absolutely brand new, beautiful en-suite accommodation. So the challenge is the variation in standard. We are adding to those facilities to make sure every athlete has the required number of showers and so on. What we cannot do is make all the accommodation exactly the same, that is not possible, however the very encouraging thing is that some of the main teams who will be coming, the big teams, have opted for and asked for accommodation which is not en-suite because they prefer the nature of the accommodation where some of the buildings are old, because they are more attractive than modern buildings, I think, and we feel we are going to be able to satisfy the requirements of all the teams in that way. But it is an enormous task to make that village what we want it to be. I do agree with Charles, given we will make the accommodation of a very good standard, albeit not all exactly the same, we will make the atmosphere in the village, the services and the way in which the athletes are treated, so good, so welcoming, so exciting a place to be, that for them it will be a once-in-a-lifetime experience, and we are quite confident we can do that.

  417. Obviously security is a real issue at all Games. However friendly you want to make them, it is important that personal security is available for all the teams and all the athletes. How will you cope with that when, if these Games are really successful and more people come than you would initially envisage, more people have to be accommodated off-site? How are you going to manage the security arrangements then?  (Ms Done) We will be looking very hard at how to deal with that when we are clear exactly how many are coming in each team, how many will be in overflow accommodation. Obviously we have already thought about overflow accommodation and then we will know how much we are going to use. We will be talking very hard with our security adviser and security manager and the team to make sure we provide the appropriate arrangements. We have selected accommodation with a view to making sure that can actually happen. The athletes will travel on dedicated bus services, and that is a very important part of securing their well-being during the period of the Games. I think you can be sure that whatever the overflow numbers are, and at this stage they are very much estimates, there are quite likely to be more athletes because the Games are turning out to be extremely popular, especially bearing in mind that an English Games means the Welsh, the Scottish and Northern Ireland teams very much want to come and are in much bigger numbers than would normally be the case, so that has contributed to it. We will also have very large teams from Canada, Australia and other teams from across the world. It is very encouraging for us actually that one of our problems is the fact so many athletes and team officials are likely to come.  (Mr McCartney) There are two issues on security. We have set up a very close liaison relationship with the police who are now part of the team for the planning of general security. It is also the year of the Queen's Jubilee and therefore we are expecting to have to plan for a substantial number of VIPs from across the Commonwealth, and that brings with it some acute issues around protection and security, which has been handled in a very specific way with the Foreign & Commonwealth Office and the Home Office, with the team. So even at this stage issues around that type of security are being planned in a specific way. I thought I had better say that because there are different levels of security and so you know we are thinking of each level. Given it is the Queen's Jubilee, there will be an expectation that a majority of key people, VIPs, politicians and others from the Commonwealth will at least come to the start of the Games and therefore logistics are being planned now to deal with that.

Ms Ward

  418. Minister, given that in most other parts of the world where events take place it would be considered unusual to say the least for a local authority to underwrite the costs of such a major event—normally it would be perhaps the region or the state or the Government—do you think the risks that fall upon the City or the local authority are so great that there will be a problem for others in the future in deciding whether or not to take the initiative to bid for other events?  (Mr McCartney) You are leading me into an area which I have no responsibility for but I do have a view on this and I am prepared to share it with you. Across the globe, looking at the other events which have happened in the recent past, there is an absolute mixture as to who takes responsibility for what. A mixture in terms of local government, and state government. In some countries the local government is merely a shell and the state government is really the local government. What seems to be a general pattern though is that state governments or national governments have two hands-on responsibilities and that is for ensuring the infrastructure projects are completed and secondly have a good, close working relationship with the organisers. This is not always the case, as we have seen in the recent past with some high profile disagreements over Olympic sites. Each country in its own way either muddles through or has a Rolls Royce version. I think it is true to say that in each country you have to deal with the situation as you find it, and that is what we have here. The second part of your question relates to here. In 1995 the agreement was reached that Manchester City would take responsibility and it has not changed. What has changed since your Report—so I do not take credit for this—is that there has been a change in direction, and that direction is a far closer working relationship and partnership between central government and those who are delivering the Games. This has in turn led to—and I have no brief to say this but I think it is important to say it—a changed culture within Whitehall. Irrespective of what party has been in power, there has never been a culture of actually working together to secure big events; it just has not been part of our culture. Therefore it was not just a matter of taking your review and ticking the box and taking up the idea, we had to look at changing the culture and getting people to accept risk, accept responsibility and accept they need to work in a different way. That has been difficult for some people. In establishing from ground zero in under a year a really good working culture we have come a long way in a short time. What we need to do after this event, and this is for others to determine, is to build on that culture because this hopefully will not be the last event we will want to compete for as a nation. I hope we are going to have an ambition and compete for other large global events and other events which are not seen as global but are actually very important to attract into the United Kingdom to use them as a window of opportunity for a range of other issues. That will mean a different tack from how we have done it in the past and that will mean a far more focused approach at Central Government, a far more focused set of partnerships. And to invest in skills from the Commonwealth Games, and having invested in them, to retain those skills to use them for further events. If that is helpful, that is my view of what should happen.

Chairman

  419. Could I just intervene at that point. Of course I think the answer you have given us, Mr McCartney, is extremely valuable. The fact is, is it not, that until our Report and your appointment, what happened within this country was when we had international events we somehow muddled along. The last Commonwealth Games at Edinburgh were, as it were, the personal play thing of Mr Robert Maxwell. The World Student Games in Sheffield have left a legacy which is a lesson to all of us as to what can go wrong when you do not have a structure. We now have a structure. You were appointed as part of a recommendation from this Select Committee that there be a Minister for Events and as you point out there are going to be more events. We have the World Athletics Championships and already looming up is the question of Picketts Lock and the availability of a stadium. That being so, while of course you very properly make the point that this is not a matter for you to decide yourself, would you confirm what seems to have come out of the answer you have just given to Claire Ward that what we do need for future events, because we want more of them, is a central structure, not a centralised structure but a central structure, whereby Government takes its proper responsibility for making sure that these events, which are so important to this country, are properly arranged and managed, and leave the kind of happy after glow, say, that came from the Sydney Olympic Games?  (Mr McCartney) I am not an Events Minister, I am this event's Minister in terms of co-ordinating Government response. It is an absolute death wish within politics to recommend you for a job, Mr Kaufman, and whether there is going to be a reshuffle sooner or later, I would rather leave it to the reshuffle. As to whether or not there should be a specific department responsible, we do have a department, DCMS, and we do have a Sports Minister, and we have a Secretary of State. We have got a department identified in Government to deal with sport and sport related issues and perhaps you could ask the Secretary of State his view about that and how he should promote that. Certainly in terms of learning lessons about the role that I was asked to play, the fact that I have been asked to play this role gives an indication that your Report was taken seriously and there was a requirement to get better co-ordination and a better approach. If that was not the case I would not have been appointed, would I? What I need to do, I suppose, and your Committee from the experience of the Commonwealth Games, is to put recommendations about what we do in the future. That is really why I expressed my view that whatever Government is in power of whatever political persuasion, whatever the structure of Whitehall is, there will need to be in my view an absolute clarity about the role of the specific ministers or department who will take responsibility for working with local authorities or others in determining: one, should we make a bid; two, what the nature of the bid should be; three what the components of those who are involved in the bid are; and, four, if it succeeds what is going to be the input from Central Government and the rest of the partnership. If we can achieve that, and be far more effective in how we have done it than in the past, then we have done this nation a great favour.


 
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