Drinking at London 2012 will feel less ‘British’

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Fuller’s, who make the beer “London Pride” have told me they are “disappointed” that 2012 chiefs have decided not to use a British brewery as an official sponsor.
The Dutch beer Heineken has been appointed as the official supplier for the Games today and it will have exclusive “pouring” rights to bars at Olympic venues.
“Regardless of the decision LOCOG make, London Pride IS the beer of London and everyone at our brewery in Chiswick, West London, is looking forward to welcoming the world to our home city in 2012.”
Fuller’s managing director John Roberts said ahead of the official announcement.
You could argue that the Games could have given a smaller, British brewery the chance to improve their branding worldwide. But 2012 also have to make their money from sponsorship so you can understand why they would go for a bigger international company.
But I have to admit that I would love to have had the opportunity to be drinking English ales at the Games – maybe ordering a pint of “2012” or a couple of “Old Olympians” at the end of a long day. That would have been so British.
And it would have given the Games a really British feel. Now the Olympic bars are going to feel like any other sports event in the world.
But I will definitely have a drink in the Olympic Park in 2012, largely because one of the bars at the media centre will be named after my former boss and dear colleague Steve Parry.
Steve, the ex-sports editor of Reuters who worked on London’s bid for the Games, knew more about the Olympic movement than any other journalist I’ve met. He died suddenly during the 2008 Beijing Olympics and the Olympic journalistic world misses his wisdom.