British Airways is the proud airline partner of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, and each month we talk to a key figure who’s working to make the Olympic dream a reality
Sir Keith Mills
I was the CEO for the Olympic bid back in 2005 and after we were awarded the Olympic Games, I set up LOCOG with Seb Coe to steer us towards London 2012. The last nine years or so have been an amazing experience.
The most extraordinary thing about the Olympic Games is the ability for us to make things happen that wouldn't otherwise be possible. Early on, I asked the Royal Parks people whether we could use the parks for some Olympic sports. They were enthusiastic until I explained that we might have to close parts of the parks for security during the Games. Under the Royal Charter, the parks must remain open unless special permission is obtained. I don't know whether they asked The Queen in person, but they got permission and as a result a number of sports will take place in our wonderful Royal Parks.
I'm also chair of the International Inspiration Foundation. We presented London 2012 as an Olympic Games to inspire the world and part of that was the promise to help young people through sport. We aim to reach more than 12 million children around the world through International Inspiration. We try to understand what issues are facing children in each country and tackle them accordingly. For example, in Bangladesh thousands of children die through drowning because of floods. The programme has taught tens of thousands of children to swim, saving countless lives.
My favourite Olympic memory has to be watching Matt Pinsent winning his fourth gold medal in Athens. I was standing next to Cherie Blair and it's the only time I've ever had a kiss from a Prime Minister's wife. She threw her arms around me and nearly strangled me! An unrepeatable experience!
blog comments powered by