Olympic torch procession cost ratepayers £80k

Peter Jack with the Olympic torch last year. When the flame passed through Lononderry it cost ratepayers �80k.
Peter Jack with the Olympic torch last year. When the flame passed through Lononderry it cost ratepayers �80k.

LONDONDERRY ratepayers forked out over £80k to fund the Olympic torch celebrations in the city a year ago, the Sentinel has learned.

Council Intermin Strategic Director Peter Appleton has advised the total cost of the procession through the town and a party on the evening of the event was £80,902.

This was the cost to the ratepayers of the city alone and excludes policing costs picked up by the taxpayer.

The procession was diverted briefly due to a republican protest against the celebration of the London Olympics in Londonderry.

Stewarding accounted for the largest cost of £24,951. This was followed by the public address and CCTV (£14,546.50), and performers (£10,932.25).

The equipment for the event - barriers, stages and so on - cost £9,272.11.

Additional council staff (£7,479.04) and contractor staff (£6,563.93) also contributed to the bill.

Whilst sundries (£3,639.28), photography (£1,347.90), first aid (£1,260) and transport (£910) made up the remainder of the costs.

Outlining the expenditure in response to a Freedom of Information request, Mr Appleton explained: “Derry City Council was one of four venues in Northern Ireland chosen to host an evening celebration and there will be cost elements for this contained within the table.

“Also please be advised that these costs are solely the costs attributed to Derry City Council and do not include and additional costs in terms of policing the event.”