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Plans unveiled for huge celebration of sport and entertainment for London 2012

London Live

Story by Jack Foley

THREE iconic open-air locations in the heart of the capital will be transformed next year to offer hundreds of thousands of Londoners and visitors to the city the chance to join in the excitement of the biggest sporting event on the planet – the London 2012 Olympic Games and Paralympic Games.

Hyde Park, Victoria Park and Trafalgar Square will all play host to a series of spectacular sporting and entertainment events.

As part of London’s commitment to ensure as many people as possible have a chance to be involved in the celebrations surrounding the Games, the Mayor of London, The Royal Parks, the London Borough of Tower Hamlets and international event promoters Live Nation have teamed up to create London Live, which will enable people to watch outdoor screenings of the 2012 sporting action and enjoy top flight entertainment for free.

Full details will be announced shortly and the official website – www.londonlive.uk.com – is launched today for people to register their interest.

As well as giant state of the art screens for crowds to watch live action from the Olympic and Paralympic Games, each location will provide a stunning backdrop for a variety of entertainment and attractions for people of all ages, including live music, outdoor arts and performance, plus opportunities to try out different sports.

In addition, Live Nation will stage two very special Celebration Concerts in Hyde Park to coincide with two key milestones of the London 2012 Olympic Games – the Opening Ceremony on July 27 and the Closing Ceremony on August 12.

Ticket prices and headline acts for these two concerts, along with details about the rest of the London Live programme, will be announced in early 2012.

London Live is part of a wide-ranging series of free public events and cultural activities being planned, which will take place across the capital during the 2012 Games.

The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson said: “With the eyes of the world on London for the 2012 Games, we are creating a jam-packed programme of exciting events that will show the city at its very best and ensure as many people as possible across the capital feel a part of the celebrations.

“With its unbeatable locations London Live will be a thrilling highlight in a summer of highlights, allowing even more people to watch awe inspiring sporting heroes in high definition action for free, and other fantastic attractions for Londoners and visitors alike.”

Each London Live site will offer its own unique experience on the following dates…

London Live Hyde Park, July 27 – August 12: London Live Hyde Park, a Royal Park, will deliver unparalleled viewing of the Olympic Games via a series of large screens, including the UK’s largest.

The live BBC coverage will include the Olympic medal events; with cultural entertainment and live music also on offer. London Live in Hyde Park will be free to access between July 28 and August 11.

The Opening Ceremony on July 27 and the Closing Ceremony on August 12 will be commercially ticketed.

London Live Victoria Park, July 27 – August 12 London Live Victoria Park in Tower Hamlets will provide a more intimate viewing experience with a ‘sports café’ style approach to enjoying the 2012 Olympic Games.

Two giant screens will share the park with a series of smaller screens showing BBC live coverage. There will be an emphasis on sports participation with a range of ‘have a go’ sessions at the Victoria Park Sports Courts, and a series of evening concerts and cultural entertainment will enliven the site daily.

The Opening and Closing Ceremonies will be broadcast live at Victoria Park from the nearby Olympic Stadium.

London Live Trafalgar Square, August 29 – September 9 Once the focus shifts to the London 2012 Paralympic Games, London Live will relocate to Trafalgar Square, where a giant screen will show live coverage courtesy of Channel 4 Television. There will also be sporting activity, cultural entertainment and evening concerts.

There are three options for entry into London Live.

Option 1: The Opening and Closing Ceremony Celebration Concerts at Hyde Park on July 27 and August 12 will be ticketed, with headline acts and prices to be announced in early 2012. There will be free admission to Victoria Park on Opening and Closing Ceremony days.

Option 2: Walk in on the day – all London Live dates except the two Celebration Concerts in Hyde Park – will offer free access, with people able to turn up on the day, subject to capacity. Hyde Park and Victoria Park will also offer ‘guaranteed early entry tickets’ for access before 2pm – see below.

Option 3: Guaranteed early entry tickets – up to four tickets per person will be able to be booked in advance for entry to Hyde Park and Victoria Park before 2pm each day for a transaction fee of £3:50 per booking. Registration via the website will be required for these tickets. These tickets will not be available for the Opening and Closing Ceremony and on days that the Triathlon competition takes place – this applies to Hyde Park only.

All London Live locations are subject to Planning consent and Licence.