SHEFFIELD has received a £31 million economic boost and large increase in participation in sports on the back of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games a report has revealed.
The success of Sheffield-based stars, including gold medal-winning heptathlete Jessica Ennis, inspired more members of the public to take up sport.
Sheffield International Venues has reported gym membership rising to record levels and a 75 per cent increase in attendance at athletics training.
Sheffield aimed to capitalise on the games by putting together a Lighting The Flame strategy for the last three years – and the resulting benefits are revealed in the new Sheffield Council report.
Economic benefits range from income generated by Sheffield hosting international training camps before the Olympics to contracts won by Sheffield firms at the games and a £10 million grant which has just been awarded to develop facilities.
Coun Isobel Bowler, council cabinet member for culture, sport and leisure, said: “Our Sheffield Lighting the Flame for Sport strategy certainly delivered for the city and its residents.
“This partnership approach saw Sheffield achieve the maximum benefit from the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, not only from an economic perspective.
“Thousands of people were able to watch our Team GB stars train in their home city just before they competed or had the chance to support some of the international teams who came to Sheffield for pre-games training camps.
“Young people were inspired to try new sports and meet some of the stars of the games – thousands filled the city centre to welcome Jessica Ennis back home.”
“Our legacy from the games also includes new international relationships with Brazil, an important economic force and host of the next games.”
Steve Brailey, SIV chief executive, said: “We have seen gym membership scheme grow to record numbers.
“The number of adults swimming in SIV pools is higher than the UK average and our attendances for athletics, boxing and gymnastics are all significantly up.”
THE Lighting the Flame report shows Sheffield hosted 45 international training camps.
In the immediate weeks before the Games, Sheffield hosted 250 athletes and officials in nine sports, from 11 countries across four Sheffield venues, generating almost 3,000 individual bookings for nights in hotels.
Some 110,000 people came out on to the streets of Sheffield to see the Olympic Torch.
Sheffield’s sports facilities were used by 101 athletes from Team GB, 18 of whom won medals, while 16 medals were won by the international teams which prepared in Sheffield before the games.
Hundreds of people from Sheffield were selected to be Games Makers – who helped with the running of London 2012.
Sport participation levels increased with Sheffield International Venues reporting a 75 per cent increase in athletics attendances and a 76 per cent increase in boxing attendances.
There was at least £30.6 million of economic benefit to Sheffield from the games.