North missing out on last-minute seats for Olympic events says Labour MP

A northern Labour MP has joined the Olympic ticket row, claiming only southerners will benefit from the release of extra tickets.

Simon Danczuk, the MP for Rochdale, said while the sale of tickets for empty seats at Games venues will benefit locals in London, it is unlikely the rest of the UK will be able to take up the opportunity.

“We were promised these games would be inclusive and reach out to all corners of the UK,” he said.

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“Yet the reality is those who will benefit from the release of further tickets are Londoners.

“People in the North who were unable to get tickets first time round will feel hard done by.”

Swathes of empty seating could be seen in areas set aside for the “Olympic Family” – VIPs, sports federations and the thousands of media at the Olympic Park in Stratford, east London.

Armed services helping with security at the Games and local teachers and schoolchildren were given access to the unused seats.

Thousands more unused tickets were made available online.

These are being made available each evening for the next day’s events, but last-minutes train tickets to London can cost hundreds of pounds.

Mr Danczuk added: “People living outside the M25 will not be able to get to London at the drop of the hat and they will feel doubly aggrieved at missing out again.”

Mark Adams, of the IOC, said its audit committee was asked to look at the ticketing issue before the London 2012 Games even started.

But he said it was “not looking at a centralised ticket system”.