Through the tense build up (would we pull it all together, really, in the depths of a recession?) right up to the moments before the opening ceremony it was never clear whether London 2012 would really capture the imagination. But from the moment the Red Arrows flew across the centre of the Olympic stadium at 20:12 on the opening night, it was clear that things were going to be a little bit different.
Stunning architecture and sensitive regeneration of an area the size of Hyde Park, a witty and irreverent opening ceremony and then six weeks of sport that captured the imagination mean that summer 2012 will be remembered. The Olympics inspired, but were almost eclipsed by people’s passion for the Paralympics. And it’s all captured in The Official Commemorative Book, which covers the build up, the way Britain welcomed the world and the sports themselves in encyclopaedic precision. If you want one souvenir of London 2012, this is it.
The London 2012 Olympics and Paralympic Games – The Official Commemorative Book is published by Wiley, ISBN 9781119973140 and costs £29.99 (although it’s heavily discounted in many shops).
So it’s the first in a new series of blog posts, one every day, rounding up inspired Christmas gifts. Just make sure you order them from independent shops, won’t you?