Tag Archives: sport

The Tour De France is great news for York but also needs a business case

Tour de France logoHosting the Tour De France is a huge opportunity for York and Yorkshire, but a time of cuts to local government budgets the delivery plans must be watertight.

When it was announced last year that York was to host Stage 2 of next year’s Tour De France, I was excited. So were most residents of the city.

The Tour is the most prestigious cycle race in the world and reckoned to be the biggest annual sporting event on the planet. With 188 countries broadcasting the event, the media exposure is probably only beaten by the Summer Olympics and the Football World Cup.

Anyone who has watched the event, either in France or when it last crossed the Channel in 2007, will know size of the event and the passion of the fans.

I could go on… for the bigness of the race and the glory of the event is indisputable. However, it appears that in the excitement of ‘the biggest race in the world’ coming to town many key questions and issues have been overlooked.

Posted in Op-eds | Leave a comment

Andy Murray, Virginia Wade and my experience of a small dose of Everyday Sexism

So last night I tweeted this:

In response to this Times front page:

andy murray

It got a fair few retweets, including from Graham Linehan (@Glinner) and Danny Baker (@Prodnose), and my timeline started to get busy. Responses fell into two camps.

First, Pedants (and I mean this affectionately here), who pointed out it isn’t just Virginia Wade who’s been written …

Posted in News | Also tagged , , , , , and | 24 Comments

Sheffield Labour councillor opposes own decision

Sheffield City Hall - Some rights reserved by Welcome to SheffieldAngela Smith, MP for Penistone and Stocksbridge has called on Sheffield City Council not to close Stocksbridge Leisure Centre. Stocksbridge is in the remote rural north of Sheffield and local people will not have the same access to alternatives that others in Sheffield might.

So who is making the proposal to close Stocksbridge Leisure Centre? Well it turns out that the cabinet advisor for leisure on Sheffield City Council is Smith’s husband, one Cllr Steve Wilson.

Might this be a topic to discuss at home before troubling the press?

Posted in News | Also tagged , , and | 12 Comments

Opinion: Creating a legacy for UK sport from London 2012 – lessons from Jamaica

Politicians of all colours are running around to claim credit for Team GBs success at London 2012. Similarly sporting figures are also running around to trying to gain funding for ‘their sports’ from the Government. How can we build on success in 2012 to gain even more medals in 2016?

I want to use the example of Jamaica, a country which has produced some of the best sprinters in the world. Since 1964 (way before Usain Bolt), Jamaica has won a medal in every summer Olympics – all of them but one in athletics.

As some of you know, I was born …

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged and | 3 Comments

Three intriguing opinion poll results that made me go, “Hmm, really?”

Looking through some of YouGov’s recent poll results (as you do on a summer’s evening during the Olympics), a trio of responses struck me as, well, slightly bizarre. See what you think…

Lib Dem voters LEAST LIKELY to think Britain is best at cricket, MOST LIKELY to think we’re best at cycling

This may simply be a reflection that ‘Britain’ does not play cricket. Or perhaps just a subjective viewpoint: after all, England is currently ranked the best test cricket team in the world (though fourth in one-day internationals); while …

Posted in Polls | Also tagged , , , , and | 8 Comments

Opinion: Why I won’t be watching Euro 2012

I know for many years that there has been the debate as to whether sport should be brought into politics and am old enough to remember when there was a boycott against the South African apartheid regime.

Watching BBC Panorama last week brought up feelings of disgust, horror, anger and a sense of déjà vu. Had we entered some time vortex back to the 70’s where these chants were all too common on the terraces here in the UK?

It was made worse when the interviewer asked the police chief about what he had witnessed and filmed only minutes earlier to be …

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged and | 10 Comments

Jo Swinson MP questions BBC on all male Sports Personality shortlist

The very first thing that Alex Jones said on Monday evening when the shortlist for the BBC Sports Personality of the Year was announced live on the One Show was “they’re all men”. She sounded quite shocked – and rightly so.

She was not alone. World champion swimmer Rebecca Adlington took to Twitter to say that there were many women in sport who deserve recognition this year.

Attention was also given to how those shortlists were made up - voted for  predominantly by male sports editors of national newspapers and, inexplicably,  representatives of lads’ Mags Nuts and Zoo.

Four MPs, …

Posted in News and Parliament | Also tagged and | 15 Comments

Lynne Featherstone launches Government campaign to tackle homophobia in sport

Lynne Featherstone, Minister for Equalities, has launched Charter for Action – a set of principles to help stamp out homophobia and transphobia in sport and make sport a welcoming environment for LGBT people.

The Pink Paper reports:

A groundbreaking gay sports charter which will invite national governing bodies of sports to commit to tackling homophobia was launched yesterday.

The announcement was made by Equalities Minister Lynne Featherstone as she attended the Sheffield Eagles rugby league game – a match against Widnes Vikings which saw players take a stand against homophobia by wearing specially made kits bearing the slogan ‘Homophobia: Tackle

Posted in News | Also tagged , , and | 2 Comments

Lib Dems reveal one playing field sold off every day last year

Ahh, the wonders of government spin… here’s a BBC report from yesterday:

The Government is claiming greater success in its efforts to protect playing fields from developers. The latest figures show 97.5% of planning applications resulted in improved or protected sports provision. … “These figures are proof that the tough policies we put in place are working,” said sports minister Gerry Sutcliffe.

Let’s compare that claim with the news, revealed by the Lib Dems and picked up by the media today, that 360 playing fields were sold off in the last year, despite government safeguards which were meant to prevent …

Posted in News | Also tagged and | 1 Comment
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