Belfast Telegraph

And the winner of Olympic gold for wasting public funds is ...

By Lindy McDowell

A 13-foot high sandcastle built in Weymouth to mark 100 days before the start of the 2012 Olympics was toppled by bulldozers shortly after completion because council chiefs were concerned that someone might be injured falling off it.

This is generally taken as yet another example of health and safety gone mad. But actually you can see their point when you consider that a 13-foot high heap of unstable sand could well present a risk to the climbing (and litigious) fool.

No. What shocks me most about this story isn't that the mega sandcastle got knocked down. But that it got built in the first place. At a cost - gulp! - of £5,000. Apparently a sand sculptor had to be employed. (Is this even a proper job?)

And the organisers declare themselves thrilled with the result because they say it was only ever about acquiring an "iconic picture" which is what they did get for that well-spent five grand.

But ... couldn't they just as easily have built a wee one and photo-shopped it so that it appeared gigantic?

Couldn't they have built one out of £1 coins that might at least have still been worth something post-demolition?

And couldn't, shouldn't, they have thought long and hard about five grand for a pic which has flitted around the world not as an image of pre-Olympic anticipation but as a portrait of gargantuan stupidity?

As a monument to waste in a time of recession you'd be hard pressed to find a more "iconic" installation than the shifted sand of Weymouth strand.

Look! There goes the drawbridge and moat.

And another five grand of precious public money casually bulldozed into the briny.


From Belfast Telegraph