Sir Robin Wales criticises ‘urban desert’ comments

12:01 08 May 2012

Newham Mayor Sir Robin Wales defended pre-regeneration Newham after an Olympics boss said the area used to be an “urban desert”.

Stephen Frost, head of inclusion at London 2012, said the Olympic Park site used to be home to “burned out cars and wildcats” but the Games had transformed it into a “thriving community with affordable housing, lifetime homes, medical centres and new hospitals as well as venues built for legacy”.

Sir Robin, who sits on the boards of London 2012 and the London Legacy Development Corporation, said: “I think it’s a bit of an exaggeration. There were some very good businesses growing, but the Olympics has helped us move forward quicker.

“To suggest it’s anything other than a dynamic place now would be wrong. The Olympics went there because there are 10 rail lines, which the council fought for years to put in place. We have had a dramatic transformation of our community.”

The comments were made while Mr Frost was addressing a conference in Toronto, Canada.

Sign up for our news alerts today!

Our editors' picks for the day's top news delivered to your inbox or phone.

Sign up for email alerts Sign up for mobile alerts
1
2 3 4 5 6
7

Latest London politics news

Tuesday, May 3, 2016
London's Air Ambulance landed in the middle of Parliament Square to help the man (Picture: Martin Paige)

London’s Air Ambulance landed in Parliament Square this lunchtime to help rush a man to hospital after he fell from Westminster Bridge.

Sunday, May 1, 2016
The vandalised windows of the Cereal Killer Cafe after the September F*** Parade (Photo: Cereal Killer Cafe)

Riot police have arrived at F*** Parade, the anti-gentrification protest that caused damage in Brick Lane in September, but as of 8.54pm there were no arrests.

Thursday, April 28, 2016
Rabbi Laura Janner-Klausner from the Movement for Reform Judaism has said she doesn't think MP Naz Shah is anti-Semtiic

Rabbi Laura Janner Klausner welcomed Naz Shah into her home last week for an interfaith feast for Passover - and this morning said that she would like to take the suspended Labour MP to Israel.

Thursday, April 28, 2016
Should Ken hoist his rucksack on his shoulders and walk on out? (Picture: PA Images)

Ken Livingstone, former Mayor of London, has been suspended from the Labour party after he made comments about Hitler, Zionism and ‘the Israel lobby’ on the radio this morning.

Thursday, April 28, 2016
The Evening Standard publishs around 900,000 copies a day in the capital  (Photo: Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)

The Evening Standard’s London mayoral coverage is “consistently and overwhelmingly” biased in favour of Zac Goldsmith, giving him both more and more positive coverage than his Labour rival Sadiq Khan, according to a study by Goldsmiths University academics.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016
Lee Harris is the CISTA candidate for the London Mayoral Election 2016. He advocates legalising cannabis and setting up marijuana cafes in the capital (Picture: London24)

“One love!” is the catchprase of the hippy, ‘head shop’ owning, 79-year-old CISTA candidate for London Mayor. London24 talks legalisation, munchies and more with counterculture legend Lee Harris.

What is this?

Near You Now

Don't Miss...

Competitions

Kindle 7 inch tablet

Are you looking for a brand new gadget to help you stay connected on the go and make that long journey home a bit more entertaining? Look no further. MyOffers is giving you the chance to win 1 of 50 Kindle Fire 7” Display Tablets! That’s 50 times more chances to win, so hurry up and enter our competition today and you could be one of our lucky winners!

Read more
Yummy traditional afternoon teas for two

MyOffers is giving you the chance to win 1 of 50 Traditional Afternoon Teas for two at a location of your choice! That’s 50 times more chances to win, so hurry up and enter our competition today and you could be one of our lucky winners!

Read more

Latest Tech News

Transport