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London 2012 Olympic Cauldron...


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Oh well... I have to agree with Baron: What are the chances for a huge tower suddenly popping up somewhere within the last 48 hours or even only within minutes during the opening ceremony? When I think about it again, the remark of Thomas Heatherwick that the cauldron has passed tests at that secret location in northern England actually already pointed towards the direction of a smaller, internal cauldron. Because it's probably impossible to test a tall tower in an upright position without being noticed by other people -- unless you have a building of these proportions to keep it indoor and out of sight of "muggles":

VAB_aerial_1977.jpg

Does any such building exist in northern England? I guess no. ;)

And the cost-saving argument is very strong for London. I just watched the National Geography documentary on the Olympic Stadium's construction yesterday on Youtube, and there they reminded again of how the stadium's wrap was scrapped because that was the last remaining thing where they still could cut costs. I suppose that part of that cost-cutting was the decision to have a considerably smaller cauldron. And unlike the wrap, a tall cauldron tower didn't find a generous private sponsor. ;)

So I actually believe that ATR report -- even if it seems strange that Denis Oswald gives out such information. But on the other hand, he didn't tell much. He only said that it will be inside the stadium and mentioned to specific position, no specific look, no specific lighting method.

However, I'm very sad that everything points towards an "indoor" cauldron now. The Olympic Park would have looked even more majestic with a flame towering over it and would have attracted much more tourists without venue tickets (including me, since I'm going to London on the first Paralympic weekend) to the park. Additionally, the towering cauldrons of all Games since Seoul always were a symbol for that the Games not only belong to the Olympic Stadium audience but to the whole host city. A light, almost to be seen by the entire world (if I can get poetic for a moment ;). It's also sad that the flame will burn alone in an empty stadium for the first week of the Games, seen by spectators only by occasional "cauldron cam" shots shown on television.

That said, the big question now is where the cauldron will go inside the stadium without blocking the view for spectators and for being seen prominently during the athletic competition. I don't see many other options than putting it somewhere on the edge of the infield, similar to the position of Seoul's cauldron. It can't be in the centre of the infield for obvious reasons and it can't be in the stands, especially not in front of the jumbotrons like the Tor. If Oswald is true, it also can't be on the roof because then, it would be at least partially visible from the outside. It could stand in the middle of one of the stadium's gates, that would even be the most audience-friendly location because it wouldn't block anyone's view there, unless it's quite tall.

Now a whole new guessing game starts. ;)

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Also if the cauldron is indeed not a massively towering structure and with all the hooplas around the world to see what London will do (especially that getting the PM's consent story), maybe the IOC is wise to hint the contrary to reduce the possible disappointment.

But even if it's a visible inside the stadium cauldron, I'm still confident that it'll be beautiful and lit spectacularly.

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Also if the cauldron is indeed not a massively towering structure and with all the hooplas around the world to see what London will do (especially that getting the PM's consent story), maybe the IOC is wise to hint the contrary to reduce the possible disappointment.

Who will be disappointed besides us handful of Olympic geeks? ;) As one can see in the media reports focussing on the final torchbearer, almost no one else besides us really does care about the cauldron's location. Especially not Average Joe. Average Joe is just waiting for a spectacular show and maybe a wow moment for the lighting of the cauldron. He won't care at all about where the cauldron sits.

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The IOC is made up of human beings. Human beings make mistakes. And membership in the IOC is not based on an individual's tact or sense of responsibility; more often than not, it's based on bloodline. The point being, these people are not infallible. Just because they've been successful in keeping secrets in the past doesn't mean they are incapable of leaking.

Even if you assume that all IOC members will exercise disciplinTe, one has to think that it's more than just the IOC membership that has knowledge of cauldron details. Include top LOCOG brass, Danny Boyle's staff, OBS staff, and more. When you consider all the people that need to cooperate to get something like this done - and that it takes just one leaker to blow the secret - it's not surprising at all that ATR got this scoop.

. The very senior IOC member who is wrongly alleged to have leaked this info is London's Olympic Coordination Commission Chairperson Denis Oswald and who may be the next IOC President. It's ludicrous to think that 2 days out from the Games he would blab to "unknown persons" about the Cauldron is I think absolute ATR hogwash. This story is completely unsubstantiated and should be treated as such.
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Thats something I had to learn as well.

I use tinypic.com as it needs no sign up.

Thanks both of you. It doesn't seem to. E working on my iPad so I'll fire up my PC later and have a go. Don't hold your breath though, they're not the best pictures and probably not the cauldron anyway.

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The very senior IOC member who is wrongly alleged to have leaked this info is London's Olympic Coordination Commission Chairperson Denis Oswald and who may be the next IOC President. It's ludicrous to think that 2 days out from the Games he would blab to "unknown persons" about the Cauldron is I think absolute ATR hogwash. This story is completely unsubstantiated and should be treated as such.

My bad; I must have skipped over the part of the article where Oswald was specifically mentioned as the leaker.

Still, ATR is relatively reputable, isn't it? Have they been blatantly wrong about things in the past? And do you really think they would jeopardize relations with IOC by fabricating a quote by one of its top officials?

And keep in mind, he (reportedly) didn't say anything about the cauldron itself, the lighter or lighting method, or even its location within the stadium. He just said it wasn't visible outside of the stadium. So it's not exactly spilling all the beans; just a bean or two. :)

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. The very senior IOC member who is wrongly alleged to have leaked this info is London's Olympic Coordination Commission Chairperson Denis Oswald and who may be the next IOC President. It's ludicrous to think that 2 days out from the Games he would blab to "unknown persons" about the Cauldron is I think absolute ATR hogwash. This story is completely unsubstantiated and should be treated as such.

Completely agree

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Well, none of us know if the story's true or not although it seems rather unlikely. Even if it were on the ledge at the north es of the stadium, it would still be visible from outside - you can see the machinery at this part of the stadium roof from the outside.

I had a good look around the Park today before the gates opened - a couple of photos to share when I get home. There is <nothing> immediately obvious on the perimeter. Although my pet belief that it will be on that square north of the stadium is getting harder to defend, what I will say is that that is NOT a concrete slab; it's actually a set of steel covers over a whole of unknown (shallow) depth. So that is something that can open. Part of a drainage system? Probably. Base for a tower? Possibly...

So I'm sticking with my original guess in the other tread. 48 hours to an answer.

Oh, and if you needed more evidence that it's not the Orbit, think how even a flame on top of the observation deck would still be under the arch. Unattractive.

And to the friend that I discovered last night is an anonymous reader of this thread, hello!

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This story is completely unsubstantiated and should be treated as such.

Well, none of us know if the story's true or not although it seems rather unlikely.

I'm just not understanding this sense of bemusement and mystery here. ATR, as far as I know, is one of the leading - if not the foremost - industry publication regarding the Olympic Games. They have directly attributed a quote to a top IOC official stating that the cauldron will not be visible from outside the stadium. Usually, when you have a story in a reputable publication with a quote directly attributed to a top official, what do you call it? "Substantiation."

If you believe that they just made up this quote out of whole cloth, then you have to also believe: (1) they don't care about their reputation within the Olympic Movement; (2) they, in particular, don't care about torching (no pun intended) their relationship with a man who might be the next IOC president (though my money's on Bach); and (3) they don't care about their reputation with the public in terms of being an entity with any journalistic or ethical standards.

Am I guaranteeing that what they reported is true? No. But I'm willing to give ATR the benefit of the doubt because I cannot fathom a possible motive for them to risk their relations with the IOC by printing lies.

And again, I'm willing to revise my opinion on ATR if anyone can point to any examples of "hogwash" journalism in its past. Anyone?

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Perhaps ATR are correct although I note the last paragraph in the article refers to a 2007 ATR April fools joke about the London cauldron.

I'm new to this forum, and not an Olympics geek; I found my way here after seeing the torch relay because I was curious about the cauldron. However, I remember reading that the IOC stipulates the cauldron lighting must be witnessed by those attending the opening ceremony and also witnessed outside by the entire residents of the entire host city (literally imposible in a city the size of London). That is why, I understand, Vancouver had two cauldrons. Unless this 'rule' has changed, I find the ATR article difficult to believe. Given the rather clumsy English in the article, perhaps something was lost in translation?

I see that Heatherwick's comments about Prime Minister David Cameron are being referred to again. I really think this is more about the Prime Minister approving the spectacle of the lighting, rather than authorising some outlandish method of lighting the cauldron. When the ceremonies budget was doubled, last December, Cameron was Reported to have "approved suggestions [for more elaborate ceremonies] when they were presented" (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/8936486/London-2012-Olympics-David-Cameron-steps-in-to-double-budget-for-opening-and-closing-ceremonies.html).

Some people have mentioned the idea of the cauldron (or the queen) 'flying' through the stadium. I found a London 2012 document that says the opening ceremony will use a flying system capable of lifting 25 tonnes (https://getset.london2012.com/assets-uploaded/documents/WSD_oc_-_Story_E-W.pdf).

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Perhaps ATR are correct although I note the last paragraph in the article refers to a 2007 ATR April fools joke about the London cauldron.

I noticed that too. That was a bit odd, to say the least. But it doesn't change the fact that they would be risking a hell of a lot in terms of prestige, reputation, and access, if they in fact fabricated a quote by an IOC exec board member.

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That was just a tongue-in-cheek remark of them, showing that they are taking themselves too seriously - and remember, our Rob Livingstone here also does April Fools jokes each year. That doesn't harm his and this site's reputation either.

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That was just a tongue-in-cheek remark of them, showing that they are taking themselves too seriously - and remember, our Rob Livingstone here also does April Fools jokes each year. That doesn't harm his and this site's reputation either.

There's nothing wrong with the joke but it seems odd to refer to it at the end of the article. I think tractarian has a point and it probably means the latest article about the London cauldron isn't a joke. However, I do wonder about the language used in the article. Perhaps the cauldron will only be visible inside the stadium when it is lit? Although I hate the idea of duplicate cauldrons (one inside and one outside) maybe this is a possibility. I just hope the thing doesn't appear out of a trap door in the centre of the stage/stadium. That just seems so unoriginal.

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That's interesting as the angle of the photo is deceptive, the apex of the waterways looks to be about where the wrap gap is just in the photo.

. "Sources close to the situation ?". This story sounds too flimsy to be credible. I for one do not accept this 'rumour' which at this stage is nothing more than that - an unsubstantiated rumour (hogwash in other words). The PM does not get involved in Cauldron lighting approvals if it's a standard cauldron lighting within the stadium. Until firm evidence emerges to the contrary, then I believe London is still going for a unconventional Cauldron lighting in a position able to be see by most in the stadium and Olympic Park. It may be on the roof edge or external to the stadium. The IOC of all the organisations at the Games are not usually in the business of leaking any info whatsoever about the Cauldron of all things.

They quoted Denis Oswald who would certainly know. I would be extremely surprised if this were not true and it would reflect terribly on ATR if that were the case.

For goodness sake, the IOC never never leak info about the Cauldron especially 2 days before the Opening Ceremony of an Olympic Games. Don't believe everything you read, this story flies in the face of all the IOC's actions to keep critical OC and Cauldron details like this confidential. The IOC have already blocked several YouTube video clips of rehearsals in the last 48 hours. I think that story is completely FALSE about the IOC Coordination Commission Chairperson supposedly leaking to "someone" confidential details about their own Host City's Cauldron. It sounds so ridiculous, it defies belief.

They mention Oswald by name and provide a direct quote. That would be stupid (and could open them up to a lawsuit) if it were false.

. Nothing Concrete about that story at all, It does not make sense that the IOC would spill the beans about the Cauldron like that.

You're in denial.

Could the bell itself be the cauldron? Haven't heard that possibility broached.

Heatherwick didn't design a bell. He designed a cauldron.

The International Olympic Committee do not splash Cauldron information around before a Games, Period. They just don't. They remain tight lipped. Unless of course they have chosen the London 2012 Games to, after all these years, suddenly do a 180 degree turnabout and no longer protect the integrity and confidentiality of their own Host City's Opening Ceremony and Cauldron plans. I've no idea where the Cauldron will be. Nor does the Around The Rings website.

ATR had better brace for legal action then. If you are right, they've compromised their reputation beyond repair and will probably be out of business before long.

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If the bell was the cauldron, they wouldn't bother hiring an avante-gard artist/designer like Heatherwick. Clearly, they wanted something modern and unique.

Face it peeps...you have NO idea what is going to happen or what it will look like.

And as frustrating as it is, it is just absolutely marvelous!

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If the bell was the cauldron, they wouldn't bother hiring an avante-gard artist/designer like Heatherwick. Clearly, they wanted something modern and unique.

Face it peeps...you have NO idea what is going to happen or what it will look like.

And as frustrating as it is, it is just absolutely marvelous!

Hope we still feel like this and don't know right up until the moment! Would be nice that nothing leaks about the cauldron and the lighting of it... :)

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If the cauldron does rise out of the stadium floor then it should be a great moment- plus it'll have been buried under those green fields all that time without us knowing! Do you think if this is the case it's been hidden under there since the stage was constructed? With all the aerial shots of the stadium during the building of the stage I'm amazed none of them caught sight of it!

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