Townend: London 2012 Equestrian Events at Greenwich Park Will Be “Fantastic”

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Oliver Townend is Britain’s leading three-day-eventer. And this week, he’s spoken out in favour of the decision to have the London 2012 Olympic equestrian events in Greenwich Park.

Talking to, Oliver says, “Having London 2012 coming up is a huge bonus for our sport.

“I know there’s been a lot of controversy about holding the equestrian events in Greenwich Park, but I think it’s going to be fantastic for local people. They will be able to step outside their front door and watch a really great event. It’s a big opportunity for us to explain what we do to a new audience. I can’t think of a more exciting sport to be watching on a nice sunny day, whether you are interested in horses or not.

I am really looking forward to London 2012.”

Both the equestrian and the modern pentathlon events will be held at Greenwich Park in London 2012, following a decision made in March by Greenwich Council’s Planning Board. The planning permission was granted to London 2012 along with 42 separate conditions, all of which must be met.

Seb Coe, chairman of London 2012, has made five pledges regarding Greenwich Park:

  1. to protect the park
  2. to ensure as much of the park stays open for as long as possible
  3. to leave a legacy for future generations
  4. to showcase Greenwich to the world
  5. to listen to local people about potential 2012 issues

Read the full interview with Oliver Townend here.


  1. Henrietta Gwynn says:

    Greenwich Park is essentially like a prison camp with huge swathes of the park fenced in…this hugely popular green space is essentially a no-go area now..what green space is left is chock-a-block with people trying to find a tiny piece of green grass to play with their kids…have a picnic lunch. There will be two summers of no-go Greenwich Park. And the test event which sprawls all over (now including into spaces not in the LOCOG plan) isn’t the full size of next year’s event. Let’s see Teflon Coe stick around to find the money to ensure the Park is restored…including the acid grass lands that won’t grow back. LOCOG have been seriously evasive when it comes to specifics re restoration…and keeping disruption and damage to an absolute minimum. A no-legacy event that has cost millions: Emperor Coe’s New Clothes…an updated fairytale for South Londoners.

    • Pip says:

      Not entirely true. Although the fencing for the test event was very instrusive and cut the lower part of the park into two or three parts there was and will be quite a lot of the part left to use – especially those bots around the Observatory which will have a birds eye view of events below.
      Of course it was a test event and everyone should express their concerns to LOCOG so that the park can be maintained and restored.
      But let’s not get this out of proportion. I think we can give up part of the park for a few months for once in maybe sixty years…can’t we?