It was a pleasure to watch the mens archery final at Lords on early saturday evening between the USA & Italy, coming down to the last shot with the Italians requiring a bulls-eye to win the gold medal. I never thought l would get into such a sport but l certainly did on this particularly evening, as one does with many Olympic sports which don’t normally get much coverage at all.
That said, this was my first visit of an Olympic site that l know well during the cricket season as a spectator. On a big match day during a keenly contested test match like that against the South Africa later in the month, you can expect a sell-out crowd of 30,000. More importantly the neighbourhood can deal with this well with all the good local transport connections and the informed cricket watching public take a variety of ways to Lords. So it has always surprised me by the over the top transport restrictions of roads through the Olympic Road Network(ORN) in the locality during the archery tournament in the Olympic games. For example along Lisson Grove we have no right turns between St Johns Wood Rd and Rossmore Rd as you travel up towards Lords. This was compounded by the reduction in local parking for residents around Marylebone, noticably on Grand Central St, Balcombe St and Harewood Avenue and closer of pedestrian crossings as well.
How ever good the archery was going to be at Lords and has been so far, it was never going to attract the numbers we get on a big match day where we get 10,000’s turning out rather then if we are lucky to get 5,000 souls daily to watch the archery. So l do feel these restrictions and many others around Marylebone station were unnessesary in the first place given the scale of interest which was likely to be generated.