Press release: A new era for athletics, and Crystal Palace

Crystal Palace Sports Partnership (CPSP) welcomes the news that Lord Sebastian Coe has been elected President of the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF).

Chair of CPSP, John Powell, said, “With Seb at the helm of World Athletics we have a great opportunity to bring about much needed change in all elements of the sport. I spoke to him candidly last year about the future of Crystal Palace National Sports Centre (CPNSC), and he was adamant that the future direction lies in what the communities decide.”

“We applaud Seb’s vision for athletics globally, but this must include retaining and enhancing the CPNSC, which played such a key role in his journey to the IAAF Presidency. As Chair of London 2012 he pledged the Olympic Games would ‘inspire a generation’, but with continued chronic under investment at the CPNSC, the need is NOW for him to actively support his global manifesto ‘Growing athletics in a new age’ locally, to ensure the CPNSC is facilitating sporting opportunities for generations to come.”

“Over the last few months CPSP have been doing all we can to talk to potential investment partners, and exploring a range of innovative integrated options to unlock new ways of funding a sustainable long-term future for the sports centre, nestled in the heart of Crystal Palace Park.”

“We passionately believe that the most accessible multi-sport and event venue in London – and probably the UK – requires positive planning for increased capacity. With the Mayor of London’s Sports Legacy Programme well underway, no other venue can strengthen the grassroots sport sector in London, and deliver a sustained grassroots sporting legacy like the CPNSC, which has been successfully delivering over the last 50 years. What better legacy to Seb’s IAAF election manifesto pillar ‘Embracing change to secure a better future’.”

Seb Coe is also currently Executive Chairman of CSM Sport & Entertainment, who ran the public consultation on the future of CPNSC in 2014. It controversially included options to demolish the outdoor athletics track, which Seb Coe competed on many times, breaking the World record for the 4 x 800m relay in 1982.

Date of publication: 19 August 2015

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