London 2012: Olympic projects given green seal of approval

Leading figures in the worlds of business and the environment came to Newham ahead of the Olympic Games.

Dragon’s Den judge Deborah Meaden, Kevin McCloud, star of Channel 4’s Grand Designs, writer Jonathan Porritt, and author Saci Lloyd visited green friendly projects.

The group, official London 2012 sustainability ambassadors, went to the William Paton Community Garden in Stratford and met residents Tom Buchanan and Sara Watson.

They have overseen a successful project to turn a plot of land from a scrapyard to a green garden.

The success of the project has led neighbouring communities to regenerate their gardens and Sara is now involved in 25 projects in East London, all growing plants and vegetables.

Deborah Meaden said: “What I witnessed was an inspiring outlook for the future.

“I saw people working together with genuine passion to look after their neighbourhood, they were smart and had plans to upscale the project – this was inspiring.”

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The group also visited Rokeby School in Canning Town, which is part of the London 2012 Get Set Network, and has been recognised for living the Olympic and Paralympic Values.

The ambassadors saw a ‘sustainability themed lesson’, where the pupils created a London scene out of scraps of rubbish, encouraging them to think about how materials can be reused.

David Stubbs, from Games organisers Locog, added: “From the outset, our ambassadors have had a keen interest in the way the Games affects the surrounding communities and I am thrilled they had a chance to witness this and meet the people involved.”