Daily Archives: 4 June 2007

Nogo for Logo

I’m not the most sporty person in the world, and as such I’ve tended to keep my mouth shut about the ever escalating costs of the London Olympics lest I be dismissed as a killjoy. But the unveiling of their new logo today does suggest that collective insanity has broken out amongst the Olympics planners.

I’m hazarding a guess here, but I suspect that logo will be about as long lived and affectionately remembered as the one for Consignia (which for anyone who might have blinked in 2002 was the name that the Royal Mail were intent on calling themselves until they realised they were about to commit hari-kiri). Indeed, panic measures like this suggest that management is in panic mode. The message I’ve learned from the news today is that the London Olympics are in even deeper doo-doo than I thought they were.

Not one penny of this £400,000 will be spent on sport facilities or regenerating poor parts of London. It may be a churlish thing to point out, but that is how the vast expenditure of the Olympics has always been sold to us.

To me, the logo looks like an abstract drawing of an explosion, something rather more redolent of the events of 7 July 2005 rather than 6 July 2005. And, far from ‘yoof’ it looks like something you would have found in Smash Hits circa 1984. Last thing I knew, Andrew Ridgley wasn’t cutting edge, but then again I don’t get Lily Allen either. Maybe we should get Duran Duran to do the Olympic theme, and have the ceremony opened by Roland Rat.

Surplus School Places

More grist to the School Voucher debate mill:

The number of surplus school places in England has risen to 758,000 – the highest level since 1998.

This is the equivalent of more than 2,000 average-sized primary and 250 secondary schools lying empty.

Later on it states that 12% of Primary School places and 7% of Secondary School places are vacant, while some education authorities such as Birmingham have up to 25% vacancies.

How would vouchers change this? Surplus spaces aren’t necessarily a bad thing. There is always surplus in any system (and when there isn’t… look what happened during the fuel crisis in 2000) and any system which maximises ‘choice’ has to factor in a certain amount of redundancy. Once again, I suspect it largely depends on what level you set the voucher. But what does the panel think?