Liverpool’s Commonwealth Games bid was fatally flawed


The decision of the Council to make the suggested EFC new stadium the heart of the bid for the Commonwealth games was a major reason for its failure. The stadium is still not fully costed or funded

Once again, the Mayor of Liverpool is seeking to lay the blame for his failures on others instead of looking in the mirror.

I am saying this because Mayor Anderson is furiously accusing the Government of favouring Birmingham with the announcement of funding for a homes package initially for athletes and then for conversion to general homes use for the Birmingham community. The Liverpool bid contained no such proposal and we were presumably relying on our ability to make use of the thousands of vacant private sector flats which litter the City Centre. That money might have been available to Liverpool had the main bid proceeded but the bid was fatally flawed by having a new stadium for Everton at its heart.

We have been repeatedly told by the Mayor that an announcement will still be made in respect of the funding for the Stadium. In fact, two years ago, he made the unbelievable statement that the Stadium would be ready this October. But the money was not in place at the time of the Games Bid and does not even appear to be in place now.

There is no way that a stadium could have been built in time for the Commonwealth Games in 2022 when the money had clearly not been secured. The bid judges obviously had that in mind as a major part of their rejection of Liverpool which meant that we spent £1.1 million on a bid that had a huge hole at its heart.

In March the Mayor told us that a funding proposal would be coming to the Council at the beginning of May. He then blamed me (see the pattern here?) and Momentum for damaging the prospects for the Council’s involvement. We are now in October and there is no announcement for a funding package. This may have been made even more complicated by changes of the ownership structure within the Club.

This is typical of a Mayor that throws accusations around about everyone else’s motives and lack of competency but does not face up to the reality that much of what he does is ill thought out and mis directed.

Who knows that we might have been now working on a Games Implementation Plan if we centred our bid around the existing and expanded Liverpool Ground. Not much chance of that from a ‘blue-nose’ Mayor!


About richardkemp

Leader of the Liberal Democrats in Liverpool. Deputy Chair and Lib Dem Spokesperson on the LGA Community Wellbeing Board. Married to the lovely Cllr Erica Kemp CBE with three children and four grandchildren.
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2 Responses to Liverpool’s Commonwealth Games bid was fatally flawed

  1. Tina Bartlett says:

    Surprised that Anderson didn’t consider putting the athletes in student accommodation given how much of it has been built in recent years …….

  2. David Poole says:

    Perhaps a friendly Mancunian can leave a comment? An athletics circuit is longer than the circumference of a football pitch so to use an existing premier league stadium such as Anfield for the Commonwealth Games would almost certainly require the demolition of a stand behind one goal to extend the potential athletics track & so put the stadium out of football use for a year or more until a replacement was built. That was why the previous Manchester arrangements involved building a new stadium for the Games with a temporary stand at one end. After the event this was removed and a permanent stand to complete a football stadium built about forty yards closer in – consequently Manchester City only moved in over a year after the Games had been held there. During the Games the athletes lived in student accommodation, (including restaurants), adjacent to the university’s central sports facility. Presumably Liverpool’s bid for the Games was based on a similar approach using Everton’s proposed move but sadly in the short time available sufficient finance was not found to support this. But contrary to some suggestions, it wasn’t practical to use either Anfield or Goodison as the basis for a bid.

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