Olympic Games: What London 2012 venues look like now

London 2012 gripped the country during a spectacular sporting summer. (Credit: Getty Images)

London 2012 was perhaps the most glorious sporting event in British history.

Sun, success and Super Saturday, the nation basked in the glow of the Olympic torch.

But that was seven years ago and, with one year to go until the next Olympic Games, thoughts are turning towards Tokyo 2020.

With much talk of a lasting legacy after London’s moment in the spotlight, how are those 2012 venues being used today? We take a look.

Olympic Stadium

The Olympic Stadium in 2012.
The London Stadium before a West Ham United match in 2019.

The Olympic Stadium’s capacity was reduced after the conclusion of the Games and Premier League side West Ham United became controversial tenants after a series of delays to its reopening. The running track around the outside of the playing field was kept but is covered during football matches at the venue now known as The London Stadium. The stadium still hosts athletics events, including the 2017 World Championships.

The Aquatics Centre

The Aquatics Centre in 2012.
The Aquatics Centre, after the 2012 Games.

The Aquatics Centre was another venue kept after the Games, but reduced in capacity. The top tier of seating at the pool was removed but both the 50 metre pool and the diving boards were kept. The pool is now open to the public but also hosts swimming and diving events, including the 2014 World Diving Series.

The Velodrome

The Velodrome on day 11 of the London 2012 Olympic Games.
Cyclists ride in the Velodrome on the day it opened to the general public.

In March 2014, the Olympic Veledrome, situated in the Olympic Park was opened to the public. It has also hosted track cycling events such as the UCI Track Cycling World Cup and the UCI Track Cycling World Championships. Sir Bradley Wiggins broke the UCI Hour record at the Velodrome in 2015.

The Copper Box

The fencing stage of the Modern Pentathlon at the Copper Box in 2012.
The Street League Skateboarding World Tour at The Copper Box.

The Copper box arena on the Olympic Park site largely remained the same in terms of structure and still holds a variety of events such as The Street League Skateboarding World Tour, British Basketball League matches, netball, wheelchair rugby and community events. During the Games it was used for handball and fencing for the Modern Pentathlon.

The BMX Track

The BMX Track in 2012.
Cyclists ride the BMX track at the Lee Valley Velopark as it opens to the public.

The BMX track, situated just outside the Velodrome in the Olympic Park, opened to the public in 2014. During the Games, the track had a capacity of 6,000 and attracted large crowds for all of its events. All of the seating was removed once the Games ended.

White Water Centre

Lee Valley White Water Centre in 2012.

The Lee Valley White Water Centre is situated just 12 miles away from the Olympic Park and the venue hosted the canoe slalom events at the Games. The venue opened to the public after the Games but seating was removed and a redevelopment project was carried out. The centre hosted the 2015 ICF Canoe Slalom World Championships and the 2019 ICF Canoe Slalom World Cup.

Temporary Venues

The Basketball Arena in 2012.
The Hockey Centre in 2012.

Part of the success of London 2012 was the use of venues outside of the main Olympic Park, allowing the city as a whole to prosper from the Games. It also provided those visiting the country for events to explore more of London as a result.

The shooting complex at the Royal Artillery Barracks in 2012.

Six temporary venues used were the Basketball Arena, Hockey Centre and Polo Centre in the Olympic Park, the shooting complex at the Royal Artillery Barracks in Woolwich, the equestrian venue in Greenwich Park and the Beach Volleyball Centre at Horse Guards Parade.

The Equestrian venue in Greenwich Park in 2012.
The Beach Volleyball Centre Court Stadium at Horse Guards Parade in 2012.

All six arenas were designed to be pulled down after the Games and returned to their original state. The material used for each building was recycled or sold as part of the Games’ legacy.

The grass at Greenwich Park was regrown after the equestrian finished in 2012, and Horse Guard’s Parade continues to hold royal events such as The Trooping of the Colour.

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