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Environmentalists slam giant screens

A scheme to broadcast the Olympics on huge TV screens in cities across UK was slammed by environmental experts.

india Updated: Jul 25, 2008 18:45 IST

A scheme to broadcast the Beijing Olympics on huge television screens in cities across Britain was on Friday slammed by environmental experts.

Permanent screens in Cardiff, Middlesbrough, Plymouth, Portsmouth, Swansea and Waltham Forest will be set up to keep the public in touch with action from the Games in China.

More than 20 temporary screens will also show the official handover ceremony on August 24 when London Mayor Boris Johnson receives the Olympic flag from the Mayor of Beijing.

But the scheme has been criticised by design organisation the Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment (CABE).

"Just when we're starting to create well-designed, civilised public space in many English towns, along comes a rash of intrusive neon screens," CABE Space director Sarah Gaventa said.

"Having a fun, relaxed time in our streets and squares should come from the character and design of a place, not something that feels more like an outdoor Currys (electrical store).

"This is not urban regeneration, and we have concerns about them being permanent."

A spokeswoman for The London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games (LOCOG) insisted Gaventa's criticism would be taken on board.

"We are in discussion with the Local Government Authority (LGA), Department for Culture Media and Sport (DCMS), CABE and English Heritage to make sure that any new live sites work in the best way possible for all involved," she said.