Olympic ceremony performers ‘not invited to parties’

Performers in the Opening and Closing ceremonies of the London 2012 Games voiced their anger this week at not being invited to parties thanking volunteers.

There are three invite-only parties organised in Newham next month to recognise the time dedicated residents gave up to welcome the world to the borough during the Olympics.

Newham Council has invited its pink-clad Destination Newham volunteers to an event at Old Town Hall Stratford alongside winners of their Get the Party Started grants.

But lists of volunteers for the other events, for Games Makers and London Ambassadors, were co-ordinated by the London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games (LOCOG) and the Mayor of London’s office - neither of whom hold details for Cast Members.

Many of them feel that, having rehearsed for the much-lauded ceremonies for weeks, they should have had an event of their own or have been included in other volunteer events.

Josie Coster, from East Ham, was a Gamesmaker but she also performed in both of the Opening and Closing ceremonies.

She said: “Everyone is up in arms about it online. We just want to be made welcome.

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“The Cast were a really dedicated bunch and we have been doing projects and charity work ever since the Games.”

A spokesperson for LOCOG said: “We have worked hard to facilitate requests from Boroughs to communicate with resident Games Makers on our database, and would look at any request from Newham to contact Newham residents.”

A Newham Council spokesperson said: “Newham Council is hosting three events to thank residents and volunteers for all their hard work in the lead up to and during the London 2012 Games.

“Residents that were Games Makers and London Ambassadors during the Games have been invited to these events by LOCOG as they hold the database containing their contact details.

“Newham Council also asked LOCOG to invite residents who were involved in the opening and closing ceremonies to these events but they were unable to do this.

“The thank you events acknowledge their contribution to making the London 2012 Games a momentous success.”