Shadow minister urges Government to reveal West Ham deal

  • by Staff Writer
  • Wednesday, 24th June 2015

Shadow Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport Chris Bryant has expressed his concerns regarding the agreement allowing West Ham United to become tenants of the Olympic Stadium.

Former Orient Chairman Barry Hearn, a long-term opponent of West Ham's tenancy insisted yesterday that the full details of the deal - which have never been disclosed - should be released into the public domain.

And now Bryant, who was appointed following Labour's General Election defeat last month has echoed Hearn's calls - whilst claiming the Olympic Stadium regeneration project is "over budget" with "the feel of a fiasco".

"The Coalition said it would ensure the development of the Olympic Park after the Games," read a speech Bryant is due to give in the House of Commons this afternoon. "Here there are further legacy worries.

"So far the cost of transforming the venue into a stadium ready for football has reached ?272m, with ?15m from West Ham, ?1m from UK Athletics, ?40m from Newham and ?25 m from the Government.

"That means the overall spend on the venue will now top ?700m for the 54,000-seater arena - a lot more expensive per spectator than the ?798m lavished on the 90,000-capacity Wembley."

Shadow Culture secretary Chris Bryant in the Commons

Bryant then went on to question the "transparency" of the deal - and the costs, which far exceed those required to convert Manchester's Commonwealth Games stadium for the use of Manchester City.

"The project is now over-budget by around ?35m, which comes close to the total cost of converting the City of Manchester stadium after the 2002 Commonwealth Games," he added.

"This has the feel of a fiasco cooked up somewhere between the Mayor London's Office, DCMS and the Treasury. Which is why, in the interests of transparency, I urge the government to publish the full details of West Ham's secret deal as a matter of urgency."

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