We live in shadow of major stadium – we were promised a dream but it’s one of UK’s poorest areas & is covered in dust


PEOPLE living in the shadow of a major stadium say they were promised a dream but received a nightmare in one of the UK’s poorest areas.

Residents of Newham, East London, around the Olympic Park say the whole place is covered in dust from disruptive building works while crime and poverty run rampant.


Residents around the Olympic Park in Newham, East London, say they were sold a dream that never materialised.Credit: Getty

After the London Olympics, there were plans for the area around the park, which hosts West Ham, would be redeveloped into affordable housing and a thriving community hub.

But only 11% of the 13,000 homes since the area won the bid to host the 2012 games are within the price range of those earning the local average.

Local resident Muni told MyLondon: “I’m sure there would be more young adults living around here but it is difficult.

“Even affordable housing is not affordable which is a shame for younger people.”

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She added that she still struggles with dust from the construction site in her home.

Muni fumed: “I hoover up and sweep up but two days later it’s back, it’s scary and very frightening.

“You spend your days trying to keep your place clean.

“For children who have asthma and allergies, it’s a nightmare.”

Others point to issues with crime, while claiming that the nearby Westfield shopping centre has hurt local businesses.

Perfume seller Hisam Shaikh said: “Those who can’t afford to go to Westfield come here.

“Security has gone worse. The crime rate has gone up.

“People just walk out of Poundland with stuff.”

For binman David Powell, the borough’s story is one of missed potential.

The summer of 2012 may have been an “encouraging time” for the area, but, according to David, the promised Olympic legacy never materialised.

He said: “There were a lot of promises but nothing seems to have happened.

“Before this it was local housing for local people, then all of a sudden everything spiralled out of control – it’s not for normal working people.

“I work here but my wages have gone down. I have no chance of owning a flat.”

A spokesperson for the London Legacy Development Corporation, which runs the park, said: “This is a long-term project that will take many years to complete but thousands of new homes have already been built with thousands more still to come – many of them affordable.

“The Park is now firmly established as a favourite with locals and as an international visitor destination.

“The Park is delivering on the promises for local people and there is still much more to come.”

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It comes after it was revealed that a stadium that rivalled Premier League ground’s before it was abandoned is now used as a rugby pitch.

Meanwhile, residents of the area around another major stadium said they were “sickened” by the council declaring war on fans and turning it into a ghost town.

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