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London considers holding 2012 Olympic ceremonies across city
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11:42, August 31, 2008

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British Olympics organizers are considering holding the opening and closing ceremonies of the London 2012 Games across the capital rather than just in the main Olympic Stadium, the Independent newspaper reported on Saturday.

"We don't want to try to emulate Beijing," said Tessa Jowell, Minister for the Olympics. "What we want is new ways of thinking about the opening ceremony."

Organizers are considering to get different parts of London taking part in the ceremony, with "citizens feeling they're intimately involved," she revealed to the paper.

According to Jowell, a ticketing system similar to that employed at Wimbledon is being considered. At the All England Club, tennis fans who leave the courts before the end of play are encouraged to hand back their tickets, which are then sold on at heavily discounted rates.

Jowell said she was very impressed by what she saw in Beijing. "In terms of great organization, fantastic facilities, and a welcoming attitude and pride among the people, Beijing was superb."

"But there are things we can and will do better," she insisted, pledging to make London Olympics more accessible by minimizing empty seats in stadiums. In addition, volunteers will be better trained to give "a more clearly defined role."

London is also planning to use certain innovations as ways of generating a party atmosphere in the run-up to the Games. The Mayor's office may keep the Tube network running all night during the Games. Museums and galleries could potentially be kept open until midnight.


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