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The Olympic Games

Updated on December 30, 2014

The Greatest Sporting Events In The World

Many people agree that the Olympics are the greatest sporting events in the World. The Summer Olympics are held every four years. The 2012 Olympic Games were held in London. The city had been preparing for several years, reclaiming land, building new sports facilities and improving transport links. The very British Opening Ceremony was full of history, quirky and star-studded. Even Her Majesty the Queen had a cameo role, with James Bond 007.

The Winter Olympics are also held every four years. The last Winter games took place in Sochi, Russia, in February 2014. The Summer Games of 2016 will be held in Rio, and the 2020 Games will be held in Tokyo.

I took this photo during a visit to the IOC headquarters, in Lausanne, in 2010. It shows the Olympic Rings in the form of a paperweight.

The Queen arrives at the Olympics, accompanied by James Bond

At the London Olympics, we expected the Queen to arrive with style, and she certainly did that!

Cambridge Academy Demo team for Cultural Olympiad
Cambridge Academy Demo team for Cultural Olympiad

The Cultural Olympiad

It's not just sport, you know!

The London Olympics wasn't only about the big well-known sports. It was also about the lesser known sports and pastimes, the arts, music, and more. The London 2012 celebrations featured a Cultural Olympiad. It was the largest cultural celebration in the modern Olympics. Beginning in 2008, the Cultural Olympiad included many projects and programmes inspired by London 2012. There were more than 3500 Open Weekend events around the United Kingdom, with nearly 4 million people taking part. Over 16 million people took part in or watched performances. There were more than 8000 workshops, and 2500 projects were awarded the London 2012 Inspire mark. All of this culminated in the London 2012 Festival, with free events all around the UK.

Mr Bean Takes Part In The Opening Ceremony

A little slice of British culture from the Opening Ceremony of London 2012!

The Indomitable Mr Bean Opens the Olympics

Mr. Bean always gets into a mess - he's a child in a grown man's body... a long-legged, funny-looking guy who creates mayhem wherever he goes. Mr. Bean doesn't speak, but has amazing array of facial expressions.

Rowan Atkinson (Mr Bean) sets up gags, carries them through, and then shows his mortification at the embarrassment and disasters that follow. If you enjoyed Mr Bean in the Olympic Opening Ceremony, you might enjoy his work on film.

Mr. Bean: Ultimate Collection
Mr. Bean: Ultimate Collection

This hilarious collection containing all fourteen episodes of the original series, plus two feature films, "Bean: The Movie" and "Mr. Bean's Holiday." Lots of bonus extras.


Sport, politics, sport politics, political sport...

Can sport and politics be separated? Is it fair on athletes to mix the two? Should sport be used as a lever to force political change?

What do you think about the cross-over between sport and politics?

See results

Your views on the Olympics

Are the Olympic Games the greatest show on earth?

Olympic links

Find out more about the Olympics and International Sport

London 2012 Olympics: 55 Amazing Facts - that you won't know even if you watched it all!

A fun Kindle book answering questions like:

Which country won the most medals relative to the size of its population?

What inspired the scene where Mr Bean overtook his competitors in a car?

Why did Australia do so badly? And more

Find the answers to these questions and 52 more. They will surprise and amuse you!

London 2012 Olympics: 55 amazing facts you won't know (even if you watched it all!)
London 2012 Olympics: 55 amazing facts you won't know (even if you watched it all!)

Whether you watched every minute of the London 2012 Olympic Games or just the highlights, this book will amuse you with curious facts and amazing snippets of information.


How Did You Do? - Are you a winner?

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    • savateuse profile image

      savateuse 2 years ago

      I think we were all surprised to see the Queen and 007 - and thoroughly enjoyed the ceremony

    • profile image

      Ibidii 2 years ago

      I love the Olympics and the Paralympics. I wrote two hubs about the 2002 Olympics and Paralympics where I had an hr volunteer job. I loved every minute of it! I thought it was fun to see the Queen and 007 part of the entertainment! Mr Bean was funny as usual! Great Hub!

    • savateuse profile image

      savateuse 3 years ago

      yes, I thought so too

    • annmackiemiller profile image

      annmackiemiller 3 years ago from Bingley Yorkshire England

      the opening ceremony was impressive

    • Loretta L profile image

      Loretta Livingstone 4 years ago from Chilterns, UK.

      I was lucky enough to go - TWICE!

    • chas65 profile image

      chas65 5 years ago

      No, just 50% Been watching a lot of TV and loving it.

    • savateuse profile image

      savateuse 5 years ago

      @Zebedee32: Great! Just watched the women's cycling road race, very close!

    • Zebedee32 profile image

      Zebedee32 5 years ago

      50%. I may be going to one of the soccer games.

    • savateuse profile image

      savateuse 5 years ago

      @ismeedee: maybe they thought there would be enough sport in the following days... ;o)

    • ismeedee profile image

      ismeedee 5 years ago

      I could see the entire Olympics opening ceremony as an elaborate magical ritual. Just my observations. Interesting stuff. But little or nothing to do with sport.

    • Pam Irie profile image

      Pam Irie 5 years ago from Land of Aloha

      I did awful....ooops!

    • profile image

      aquarian_insight 5 years ago

      I got 2 right - I'm terrible and I live in London around the corner from the Earl's Court Exhibition centre which is where all the Volleyball will be held.

    • profile image

      marsha32 5 years ago

      We will be watching them this year but only because my daughter made a recent trip to London.

    • savateuse profile image

      savateuse 5 years ago

      @anonymous: I enjoy the swimming and cycling...

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      I will be watching the Equestrian events for sure - I like the swimming also.

    • profile image

      savate 5 years ago

      Interesting questions. I got 5.

    • Kara Hara profile image

      Kara Hara 5 years ago


    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      I got four out of six correct. I'll be watching on TV.

    • profile image

      gradientcat 5 years ago

      I will probably watch some of the events online

    • Lee Hansen profile image

      Lee Hansen 5 years ago from Vermont

      Much as I would love to visit London to attend the Olympics, I'll be watching on TV and wishing I were there.