Commonwealth games chiefs vow to learn from Olympics problems

Commonwealth Games organisers have vowed to learn the lessons of ticketing and security problems which have caused difficulties at the 

They say they are determined to introduce a ticketing distribution and pricing policy that will ensure all venues are filled to capacity.

The pledge was made during a visit to London organised by Scottish business leaders. The delegation, led by Glasgow 
City Council leader Councillor Gordon Matheson, included representatives from the Scottish Council for Development and Industry, Glasgow Chamber of Commerce and Glasgow City Marketing Bureau.

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The visit sought to showcase Glasgow’s business expertise and investment opportunities, and build momentum towards the city’s hosting of the Commonwealth Games in 2014.

David Grevenburg chief executive of Glasgow 2014’s organising committee said those building Glasgow’s Games say they are already learning the lessons of some of the obstacles experienced by the London Olympics in recent weeks.

The first major problem to hit the London event was as the G4S security scandal, where a private firm failed to deliver 10,000 security personnel it had promised, resulting in the armed forces having to fill the gap. Then as the sporting activity began, there were empty seats in several arenas. Ministers and Olympic organisers have promised to resolve that problem, with extra tickets being sold and the army being called in to fill spaces.

Mr Grevenburg, said similar problems would be ironed out in time. He said: “Security in any major games is a very complex operation, multi-
faceted, lots of moving parts. It’s absolutely important to look at lessons learned from London, both in the private security side and also the policing and ambulance side, and general security.

“In terms of ticketing, we have some very direct outcomes that we’re looking for. Of course, we need to meet our target revenues, we want to be accessible and inclusive and we want full stadia so we’re developing policies and pricing strategies that are going to help us do that.”

Cllr Matheson said he thought the Olympics were a fantastic success, but admitted lessons would be learned in 
order to get Glasgow’s Games as “right as possible”.

“Our officers, who are involved in the detail of Glasgow 2014, have been working alongside everyone involved in London,” he said. “But of course, there are always lessons to be learned and we in Glasgow and in Scotland will be looking to learn those lessons so that we get it as right as possible.”