Ennis wants Olympic legacy

  • Last Updated: September 11 2012, 8:03 BST

Jessica Ennis has urged authorities to ensure a legacy at both the elite and grassroots level from London 2012.

Jessica Ennis: Wants a lasting Olympics legacy

Britain's glorious summer of sport finally drew to a close on Monday as the Olympic and Paralympic athletes' parade marked the official end of an unforgettable six weeks in the country's sporting history.

Heptathlon gold medalist Ennis felt the Games had already lived up to their promise to 'Inspire a Generation'.

But she also called on the Olympic Park Legacy Company to make sure the Olympic Stadium was retained for use by athletics to create a proper legacy.

"It's got to because of all those incredible memories that have been created there," she said.

"It's great that we've got the World Championships in 2017.

"But, for me, it's so important to have that there as an athletics facility."

Ennis, who was the face of London 2012 in the build-up to the Games, also urged the Government to prioritise school sport.

"I think we would all like to see that because that's one of the most important things - funding and how it is put into school," she said.

"I started in an academy, which was outside the school, but school sport is really important.

"You have to make it exciting and encourage kids and make it fun.

"When kids, especially girls, get to the age of 13 or 14, they don't particularly think sport's cool. It's not a girlie thing to do.

"Hopefully, we've changed those views here, But it's really important at school level."

After years of debate over the future of the Olympic Stadium, it had looked set to be handed Barclays Premier League club West Ham tenancy until a legal wrangle reopened the bidding process.

But Paralympic hero David Weir, who won three of his four London 2012 gold medals inside the now-iconic venue, said: "I wouldn't want to see football there.

"If you go to Paris [the Stade de France], the track gets ruined from concerts and everything else.

"So if they do use it for football as well, they need to really look after the track because there's no point having a good track if it's going to get ruined.

"Paris, there's big dips in it. Some of it's patched, some of it's got sand in it.

"When I first raced there and it was brand new, it was a superb track.

"Over the years, it's just got worse and worse, so I wouldn't want to see that.

"I would like to see it just as an athletics stadium.

"But, if we had to share, then I'd want that track to be in good nick for world records and good times."