2012 Summer Olympics

Games of the XXX Olympiad
Four abstract shapes placed in a quadrant formation spelling out "2012". The word "London" is written in the shape representing the "2", while the Olympic rings are placed in the shape representing the "0".
Host city London, United Kingdom
Motto Inspire a Generation
Nations participating 204
Athletes participating 10,768
(5,992 men, 4,776 women)
Events 302 in 26 sports
Opening ceremony 27 July
Closing ceremony 12 August
Officially opened by Queen Elizabeth II
Athlete's Oath Sarah Stevenson
Judge's Oath Mik Basi
Coach's Oath Eric Farrell
Olympic Torch
Stadium Olympic Stadium
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The 2012 Summer Olympics, formally the Games of the XXX Olympiad [2] and commonly known as London 2012, was a major international multi-sport event celebrated in the tradition of the Olympic Games, as governed by the International Olympic Committee (IOC). It took place in London and to a lesser extent across the United Kingdom from 25 July to 12 August 2012. The first event, the group stage in women's football began on 25 July at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff, followed by the opening ceremonies on 27 July. [3] [4] 10,768 athletes from 204 National Olympic Committees (NOCs) participated. [5]

Following a bid headed by former Olympic champion Sebastian Coe and then- Mayor of London Ken Livingstone, London was selected as the host city on 6 July 2005 during the 117th IOC Session in Singapore, defeating bids from Moscow, New York City, Madrid, and Paris. [6] London became the first city to host the modern Olympic Games three times, [7] [8] having previously done so in 1908 and in 1948. [9] [10]

Construction for the Games involved considerable redevelopment, with an emphasis on sustainability. [11] The main focus was a new 200-hectare (490-acre) Olympic Park, constructed on a former industrial site at Stratford, East London. [12] The Games also made use of venues that already existed before the bid. [13]

The Games received widespread acclaim for their organisation, with the volunteers, the British military and public enthusiasm praised particularly highly. [14] [15] [16] The opening ceremony, directed by Danny Boyle, received widespread acclaim throughout the world, particular praise from the British public and a minority of widely ranging criticisms from some social media sites. [17] [18] During the Games, Michael Phelps became the most decorated Olympic athlete of all time, winning his 22nd medal. [19] Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and Brunei entered female athletes for the first time, so that every currently eligible country has sent a female competitor to at least one Olympic Games. [20] Women's boxing was included for the first time, thus the Games became the first at which every sport had female competitors. [21] [22] [23] These were the final Olympic Games under the IOC presidency of Jacques Rogge.

The final medal tally was led by the United States, followed by China and host Great Britain. Several world and Olympic records were set at the games. Though there were several controversies, the 2012 games were deemed highly successful with the rising standards of competition amongst nations across the world, packed stadiums and smooth organisation. Furthermore, the focus on sporting legacy and post-games venue sustainability was seen as a blueprint for future Olympics.

Bidding process

By 15 July 2003, the deadline for interested cities to submit bids to the International Olympic Committee (IOC), nine cities had submitted bids to host the 2012 Summer Olympics: Havana, Istanbul, Leipzig, London, Madrid, Moscow, New York City, Paris, and Rio de Janeiro. [24] On 18 May 2004, as a result of a scored technical evaluation, the IOC reduced the number of cities to five: London, Madrid, Moscow, New York and Paris. [25] All five submitted their candidate files by 19 November 2004 and were visited by the IOC inspection team during February and March 2005. The Paris bid suffered two setbacks during the IOC inspection visit: a number of strikes and demonstrations coinciding with the visits, and a report that a key member of the bid team, Guy Drut, would face charges over alleged corrupt party political finances. [26]

Lord Coe – the head of the London 2012 bid

Throughout the process, Paris was widely seen as the favourite, particularly as this was its third bid in recent years. London was initially seen as lagging behind Paris by a considerable margin. Its position began to improve after the appointment of Lord Coe as the new head of London 2012 on 19 May 2004. [27] In late August 2004, reports predicted a tie between London and Paris. [28]

On 6 June 2005, the IOC released its evaluation reports for the five candidate cities. They did not contain any scores or rankings, but the report for Paris was considered the most positive. London was close behind, having closed most of the gap observed by the initial evaluation in 2004. New York and Madrid also received very positive evaluations. [29] On 1 July 2005, when asked who would win, Jacques Rogge said, "I cannot predict it since I don't know how the IOC members will vote. But my gut feeling tells me that it will be very close. Perhaps it will come down to a difference of say ten votes, or maybe less." [30]

On 6 July 2005, the final selection was announced at the 117th IOC Session in Singapore. Moscow was the first city to be eliminated, followed by New York and Madrid. The final two contenders were London and Paris. At the end of the fourth round of voting, London won the right to host the 2012 Games with 54 votes to Paris' 50. [31] The celebrations in London were short-lived, being overshadowed by bombings on London's transport system less than 24 hours after the announcement. [32]

2012 host city election – ballot results
City NOC Round 1 Round 2 Round 3 Round 4
London   United Kingdom 22 27 39 54
Paris   France 21 25 33 50
Madrid   Spain 20 32 31
New York City   United States 19 17
Moscow   Russia 15
Other Languages
Аҧсшәа: Лондан 2012
беларуская (тарашкевіца)‎: Летнія Алімпійскія гульні 2012 году
føroyskt: Summar-OL 2012
Bahasa Indonesia: Olimpiade Musim Panas 2012
Кыргызча: Лондон 2012
norsk nynorsk: Sommar-OL 2012
oʻzbekcha/ўзбекча: Yozgi Olimpiada oʻyinlari 2012
Simple English: 2012 Summer Olympics
srpskohrvatski / српскохрватски: Olimpijada 2012
vepsän kel’: Kezaolimpiad-2012