diamond geezer

 Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Ten days to go. At one point it was 2578, and now it's ten. Hardly seems possible, to be honest. So I've been for another walk around the Olympic Park, this time slightly further out because several closer paths have now been sealed off. And a lot's changed, as preparations for London 2012 hype up for the endgame. Let's go round again.

London 2012  Around the Olympic Park
  a) Bow Roundabout to Eton Manor
  20 photographs here; map here

Bow Roundabout: There have been no urgent updates to the cyclist or pedestrian facilities here in the last fortnight, but we do now have some pretty flowerbeds. Two sculptures which say "BOW" in big metal letters have recently been joined by long stone trench-shaped planters filled with earth. There are some red and pink flowers in them too, though they're a bit underwhelming at present and nothing that'll wow Olympic visitors over the next few weeks. At present the irrigation pipes look a bit unnecessary, but I'm sure their moment will come. All credit to the High Street 2012 team for brightening up the space under the flyover, and to whoever suggested the sculpture idea in the first place, well done.

Bow West: A lot of people are coming to the Games by private vehicle, hence the need for screening areas dotted all around the perimeter of the Olympic Park. The latest is adjacent to the Old Ford junction on the A12, squeezed into an ex-semi-industrial site, allowing very important people access to the Park without having to join the queue driving up Stratford High Street. Workers were out adding the finishing touches to a magenta gateway at the weekend. And, best of all, there are now traffic lights on the overbridge, which makes walking or cycling along Wick Lane suddenly hugely safer.

Dace Road: The top of the Greenway is sealed off and deserted, indeed has been for a while, at least until the Games begin and dismounted cyclists flood through to enter the Park via the Victoria Gate. At the other end of Dace Road, Old Ford Lock is also now inaccessible. The barriers are guarded by bona fide G4S security guards, whose job it is to tell cyclists and pedestrians the towpath's closed and would they mind please detouring elsewhere.

Forman's: The luckiest salmon smokery in London continues to exploit its re-location adjacent to the Olympic Park. Their penthouse art gallery just hosted an impressively sport-themed display by the East London Printmakers, and on Thursday Muhammed Ali is dropping in to open an exhibition celebrating himself. Honest. The gallery's got the best remaining view of the Olympic Stadium, especially if you wander out onto their astroturfed roof terrace... which will shortly be part of their premium Games hospitality option. The Fish Island Riviera opens next week, for any corporate soul with a budget to splash, although it's looking anything but Mediterranean at the moment. A row of white prefabs is up, but empty. A line of palm trees decorates the otherwise deciduous riverside. And inbetween there's no sand, no cocktail bar, no beach volleyball court, not yet... just workmen hurrying to dress up the car park to international jetset standards before the paying customers arrive.

The White Building: The area around Hackney Wick station is rammed with former warehouses that are now artists' studios, fantastically so, and now there's a new kid in town. The White Building opened on Saturday at the top of White Post Lane, allegedly a "new cultural venue focusing on innovation and creative practice at the intersection of art, technology and sustainability". The reality's not quite so cringeworthy. It's a white building, obviously, created in a derelict print works and funded by the London Legacy Development Corporation. The plan is for a combined studios and event space, plus a food and drink option to bring the punters in. A craft brewery with bar and pizzeria have taken the ground floor space, with tables along the riverbank for the quaffing of fine ale. Pizzas are £8-10 and look suitably artisan, if you're the youthful, trendy, beardy, hipster type. It all feels atypical for Hackney Wick and yet somehow ideal, as if the heart of Shoreditch just shifted three miles east.

The Walls Have Ears: The graffitied brick walls of White Post Lane are being given a pre-Olympic spruce-up by the Bread Collective. They're out at the moment painting various phrases evocative of Hackney Wick's industrial past, and painting them beautifully too. The world's first plastic, "Parkesine", that's already up. Local speciality "Matchbox Cars", that's pencilled in. "Mint Creams" from the former Clarnico sweet factory, that was midway through being painted on Sunday afternoon. Even "Fridge Mountain" looks good daubed in bright bold colours. To protect their work, the Collective have stuck up witty posters saying "This is a community project and nothing to do with Coke". Alas the usual crowd of substandard taggers appear to have already sprayed their wares across some of the new works, and I fear it won't be long before they desecrate the lot.

Open Our Towpath: E9's protesting cyclists organised another demonstration on Sunday. They cycled down the open section of the Lea towpath from the Lea Bridge Road, then politely harangued the quite frankly excessive security presence outside the Main Press Centre. That's the usual G4S security posse in their bivouac, a drafted-in vanful of Metropolitan Police and a miniboat with waterborne hi-vis officials. No soldiers for a change, although they were much in evidence at park entrances further along the Eastway. As the days tick by, the argument that the towpath should be reopened gets increasingly harder to win. But that won't stop them trying, so expect another demo next Sunday.

<< click for Newer posts

click for Older Posts >>

click to return to the main page

...or read more in my monthly archives
Jan16  Feb16  Mar16  Apr16  May16  Jun16  Jul16  Aug16  Sep16  Oct16
Jan15  Feb15  Mar15  Apr15  May15  Jun15  Jul15  Aug15  Sep15  Oct15  Nov15  Dec15
Jan14  Feb14  Mar14  Apr14  May14  Jun14  Jul14  Aug14  Sep14  Oct14  Nov14  Dec14
Jan13  Feb13  Mar13  Apr13  May13  Jun13  Jul13  Aug13  Sep13  Oct13  Nov13  Dec13
Jan12  Feb12  Mar12  Apr12  May12  Jun12  Jul12  Aug12  Sep12  Oct12  Nov12  Dec12
Jan11  Feb11  Mar11  Apr11  May11  Jun11  Jul11  Aug11  Sep11  Oct11  Nov11  Dec11
Jan10  Feb10  Mar10  Apr10  May10  Jun10  Jul10  Aug10  Sep10  Oct10  Nov10  Dec10 
Jan09  Feb09  Mar09  Apr09  May09  Jun09  Jul09  Aug09  Sep09  Oct09  Nov09  Dec09
Jan08  Feb08  Mar08  Apr08  May08  Jun08  Jul08  Aug08  Sep08  Oct08  Nov08  Dec08
Jan07  Feb07  Mar07  Apr07  May07  Jun07  Jul07  Aug07  Sep07  Oct07  Nov07  Dec07
Jan06  Feb06  Mar06  Apr06  May06  Jun06  Jul06  Aug06  Sep06  Oct06  Nov06  Dec06
Jan05  Feb05  Mar05  Apr05  May05  Jun05  Jul05  Aug05  Sep05  Oct05  Nov05  Dec05
Jan04  Feb04  Mar04  Apr04  May04  Jun04  Jul04  Aug04  Sep04  Oct04  Nov04  Dec04
Jan03  Feb03  Mar03  Apr03  May03  Jun03  Jul03  Aug03  Sep03  Oct03  Nov03  Dec03
 Jan02  Feb02  Mar02  Apr02  May02  Jun02  Jul02 Aug02  Sep02  Oct02  Nov02  Dec02 

eXTReMe Tracker
jack of diamonds
life viewed from london e3

email    twitter    G+

my flickr photostream

What's on this weekend?
Wed 19th - Sun 23rd October
Bloomsbury Festival
It's free to visit the Foundling Museum this weekend.

twenty blogs
ian visits
blue witch
city metric
the great wen
edith's streets
spitalfields life
in the aquarium
round the island
wanstead meteo
london museums
christopher fowler
ruth's coastal walk
london reconnections
dirty modern scoundrel

quick reference features
Things to do in Outer London
The DG Tour of Britain
Comment Value Hierarchy

read the archive
Oct16  Sep16
Aug16  Jul16  Jun16  May16
Apr16  Mar16  Feb16  Jan16
Dec15  Nov15  Oct15  Sep15
Aug15  Jul15  Jun15  May15
Apr15  Mar15  Feb15  Jan15
Dec14  Nov14  Oct14  Sep14
Aug14  Jul14  Jun14  May14
Apr14  Mar14  Feb14  Jan14
Dec13  Nov13  Oct13  Sep13
Aug13  Jul13  Jun13  May13
Apr13  Mar13  Feb13  Jan13
Dec12  Nov12  Oct12  Sep12
Aug12  Jul12  Jun12  May12
Apr12  Mar12  Feb12  Jan12
Dec11  Nov11  Oct11  Sep11
Aug11  Jul11  Jun11  May11
Apr11  Mar11  Feb11  Jan11
Dec10  Nov10  Oct10  Sep10
Aug10  Jul10  Jun10  May10
Apr10  Mar10  Feb10  Jan10
Dec09  Nov09  Oct09  Sep09
Aug09  Jul09  Jun09  May09
Apr09  Mar09  Feb09  Jan09
Dec08  Nov08  Oct08  Sep08
Aug08  Jul08  Jun08  May08
Apr08  Mar08  Feb08  Jan08
Dec07  Nov07  Oct07  Sep07
Aug07  Jul07  Jun07  May07
Apr07  Mar07  Feb07  Jan07
Dec06  Nov06  Oct06  Sep06
Aug06  Jul06  Jun06  May06
Apr06  Mar06  Feb06  Jan06
Dec05  Nov05  Oct05  Sep05
Aug05  Jul05  Jun05  May05
Apr05  Mar05  Feb05  Jan05
Dec04  Nov04  Oct04  Sep04
Aug04  Jul04  Jun04  May04
Apr04  Mar04  Feb04  Jan04
Dec03  Nov03  Oct03  Sep03
Aug03  Jul03  Jun03  May03
Apr03  Mar03  Feb03  Jan03
Dec02  Nov02  Oct02  Sep02
back to main page

diamond geezer 2015 index
diamond geezer 2014 index
diamond geezer 2013 index
diamond geezer 2012 index
diamond geezer 2011 index
diamond geezer 2010 index
diamond geezer 2009 index
diamond geezer 2008 index
diamond geezer 2007 index
diamond geezer 2006 index
diamond geezer 2005 index
diamond geezer 2004 index
diamond geezer 2003 index
diamond geezer 2002 index

my special London features
a-z of london museums
E3 - local history month
greenwich meridian (N)
greenwich meridian (S)
the real eastenders
london's lost rivers
olympic park 2007
great british roads
oranges & lemons
random boroughs
bow road station
high street 2012
river westbourne
trafalgar square
capital numbers
east london line
lea valley walk
olympics 2005
regent's canal
square routes
silver jubilee
unlost rivers
cube routes
capital ring
river fleet

ten of my favourite posts
the seven ages of blog
my new Z470xi mobile
five equations of blog
the dome of doom
chemical attraction
quality & risk
london 2102
single life
april fool

ten sets of lovely photos
my "most interesting" photos
london 2012 olympic zone
harris and the hebrides
betjeman's metro-land
marking the meridian
tracing the river fleet
london's lost rivers
inside the gherkin
seven sisters

just surfed in?
here's where to find...
diamond geezers
flash mob #1  #2  #3  #4
ben schott's miscellany
london underground
watch with mother
cigarette warnings
digital time delay
wheelie suitcases
war of the worlds
transit of venus
top of the pops
old buckenham
ladybird books
acorn antiques
digital watches
outer hebrides
olympics 2012
school dinners
pet shop boys
west wycombe
bletchley park
george orwell
big breakfast
clapton pond
san francisco
children's tv
east enders
trunk roads
little britain
credit cards
jury service
big brother
jubilee line
number 1s
titan arum
doctor who
blue peter
peter pan
feng shui
leap year
bbc three
vision on
ID cards