Residents vent Games anger at packed meeting

THERE were angry scenes as Commonwealth Games and council bosses faced hundreds of East End residents who say they have endured "five years" of disruption in the run up to the event.

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Around 350 Eastenders vented their fury at council and Games officials
Around 350 Eastenders vented their fury at council and Games officials

Around 350 people attended a public meeting at the Emirates Arena to outline additional road closures and parking restrictions over the coming weeks and during the event.

Council spokesman David McClelland was heckled as he repeatedly responded to angry questioning by saying the council was "acutely aware what this community has had to face".

Richard Robinson, lead venue transport manager of Glasgow 2014, outlined new road closures and parking restrictions which he admitted would cause "major disruption" for local residents.

Residents in the areas surrounding the Emirates Arena, Parkhead stadium and the Athletes Village demanded compensation for disruption and noise during the building process, the impact on homes and road closures.

The lack of local amenities for residents was repeatedly raised. The council said discussions were in place about a shuttle bus to take ­elderly residents to shops outwith the area.

Some at the meeting called for a discount on their council tax and questioned why local residents were not offered free tickets for the opening ceremony.

Liz Napier, who lives in London Road, said: "There is a lot of ill feeling with regard to the Games but it is understandable. You need to offer these people something to make their lives a bit better, like reduction in council tax."

Another said: "Over the past five years we have had disruption after disruption. When are we going to see the benefit."

Some residents who live near the Athletes Village expressed anger about their homes being surrounded by a perimeter fence, which Mr McClelland said had been erected "for the safety" of those taking part.

One resident said: "All we have heard tonight is about spectators. There is nothing about the people who live here."

Car owners who will be unable to park outside their homes and will be ­issued with special permits to allow them to park elsewhere. However some residents expressed fears about their vehicles being targeted by vandals or increases in car insurance.

Mr McClelland said all public ­responses at the meeting would be fed back to the council.

Local government

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