diamond geezer

 Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Earlier this month five neighbourhoods in the Olympic Park were named, based on suggestions sent in by members of the public. But one new neighbourhood was omitted, the neighbourhood that's already been built - the Athletes Village. Presumably that'll be called "Olympic Village" after the Games, or "Westfield Qatar", or whatever else the estate's new owners choose to brand it.

But there is sudden confirmation of fresh nomenclature hereabouts. TfL have updated their London basemap to include all things Olympic, and that includes the street names chosen for the roads in the Athletes Village. These street names sound like they were dreamt up by committee, probably during a brainstorming session, perhaps in conjunction with one of the local primary schools. See what you think.

street map, Athlete's Village

» Penny Brookes Street, De Coubertin Street: Full marks if you know why these two names were chosen. William Penny Brookes was the Shropshire doctor whose community Games helped inspire the Olympic movement. And Baron Pierre de Coubertin was the bloke he inspired, founder of the IOC. Inspired choice, as anyone who's been to Much Wenlock will know.
» Elis Way: Elis is an ancient district in southern Greece, site of the first ever Olympic Festival in the 8th century BC, and home to the slopes of Olympia. Educational this, innit?
» Montfichet Road: A local connection here. Stratford grew up around a Cistercian Abbey, founded in 1135 by William de Montfichet. It grew to have national importance, but fell to rack and ruin after the Dissolution. Catch the DLR from Montfichet Way and you'll ride through the former abbey, close to Abbey Road station.
» Hitchcock Lane: There's an honour. Leytonstone's greatest film producer gets the dead-end delivery road round the back of Westfield named after him. Dubious honour, I fear.
» International Way, Olympic Park Avenue, Westfield Avenue: No originality here, especially on the latter of the three.
» Honour Lea Avenue: The River Lea runs nearby, but I'm uncertain why 'Honour' has has been shoehorned onto the front of it.
» Mirabelle Gardens, Liberty Bridge Road: Er, no idea. I can't find an Olympic connection, nor a local Stratford connection, for either of these two.
» Citius Walk, Altius Walk, Fortius Walk: This trio echo the Olympic motto - Citius, Altius, Fortius - which is is Latin for "Faster, Higher, Stronger".
» Anthems Way, Celebration Avenue, Fortunes Walk, Prize Walk, Ribbons Walk, Champions Walk, Cheering Lane: Somebody's got their thesaurus out, or played I-Spy at an Olympic medal ceremony. Spot on, or a little bland?
» Victory Parade: Oh for goodness sake. I mean, I can see why it's a clever choice for the Athletes Village, but will future residents be embarrassed to admit their address?
» Glade Walk, Ravens Walk: It's been a very long time since there were verdant glades and countryside to the north of Stratford. Decommissioned Railway Sidings Walk would have been more relevant, if less lovely.

Anyone can explore the Athletes Village map by using the TfL Journey Planner and starting the trip at Stratford International. Your destination doesn't matter, they'll auto-generate a map around your starting point and hey presto, there's Penny Brookes Street. But even if you zoom in, not all of the street names are visible. Which leads me to ask, what would you call a road in the Athletes Village?

Your suggestions:
» Inner Drive, First Place, Last Place, Gold Circle, Silver Street, Bronze Road.
» Row Row, Walk Walk, Ride Ride, Pace Place, Wiff-Waff Walk, Javelin Avenue, Shot-Put Drive.
» Athlete's Foot Path, Cock-Up Close, Coe Court, Lycra Close, Muscle Avenue, Rainonyour Parade.
» Fleece Avenue, Vanity Road, Recession Walk, Non-Existant Legacy Parade, Waste of Taxpayers' Money Grove.
» ????

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