London 2012 Olympics: Empty seats on the opening day prompts investigation
An investigation has been launched by the London 2012 organisers Locog after banks of empty seats were evident in multiple sporting venues on the opening day of the Games.
By Melanie Mulhern
3:18PM BST 28 Jul 2012
Despite tickets for the events being sold out, television images revealed scores of empty seats at the swimming, dressage, volleyball and tennis.
Commentators noted the unfilled seats and members of the public who were unable to purchase tickets took to social media websites like Twitter to express their anger.
A spokesperson for Locog said: “We are aware that some venues have empty seats this morning. We believe the empty seats are in accredited seating areas, and we are in the process of finding out who should have been in the seats and why they weren’t there.”
It comes after Locog faced criticism for the number of seats being given to corporate sponsors, Olympic officials and VIP guests.
There were also fears last week that long queues and transport problems would leave many ticket holders unable to get to their seats in times to watch the main events.
James Pearce, BBC Olympics Correspondent wrote on Twitter this morning: "In Aquatics Centre and surprised to see hundreds of empty seats." Alastair Campbell followed stating that the "big gaps" at the various events "have to be explained."
Members of the public echoed such sentiments. Alex Batchelor wrote: "Can anyone explain why there are lots of empty seats? Tried repeatedly to get tickets without success."