Why were so many empty seats at London Olympics?
Ticket scandal overshadows London Olympics opening
Olympic organisers scrambled on Sunday to quell a scandal over depressing TV images of half-empty stands at the London Olympics as a government minister said an urgent inquiry had been launched to identify just who had failed to show up, and why.
Fans from all over Britain who had been charmed by the Olympic publicity offensive, but were let down by a complex ballot system, were outraged by footage of empty seats at key venues including Wimbledon – one of the hottest tickets in world tennis.
“It’s infuriating to see so many empty seats on TV. Surely it can’t be beyond the organisers to allow real sports fans to fill them up on a first come first served basis?” said Ed Shorthose, a London-based father of two who has been trying for months to get tickets to see the Games.
More vacant seats were reported on Sunday, the second day of the Games.
Organisers said they were in touch with the International Olympic Committee to discover who failed to show up and why.
A Games official told Reuters it was still unclear whether the empty seats in several events, including Wimbledon, swimming, gymnastics and basketball, had been allocated to sponsors, international federations and athletes’ families.
“We are trying to find out who these tickets belonged to,” said the official. Read full story.
The organisers promised an investigation:
The London 2012 organising committee (Locog) said most of the empty seats were not those sold to members of the public, but had been reserved for members of the “Olympic family”.
That was a fast investigation, wasn’t it?
Organisers also believed some officials and sponsors slept in late yesterday to recover from Friday’s opening ceremony, which finished well after midnight. Read full story at DNA
An urgent investigation has been launched after Olympic fans expressed disappointment at the sight of rows of empty seats on the first day of the London 2012 Games.