Giant clock begins Olympics countdown

A giant clock has been erected in Trafalgar Square, which will countdown the hours, minutes and seconds leading up to the 2012 Olympic Games.

The games will take place in a myriad of event spaces throughout England, and the ballot recently opened for Brits to put in their requests for tickets – of which there are 7.6 million available for the general public.

These will be allocated randomly; with the usual first-come, first-served approach taking no place, according to BBC News.

Late on Monday evening, the clock was unveiled by many Olympic champions – including Jessica Ennis, Iain Percy, Andrew Simpson, Andy Hodge and Peter Reed. London mayor Boris Johnson was also in attendance.

Ennis spoke to The Mirror about the clock; claiming: “It will be a daily and hourly reminder that the countdown to the start of London 2012 has well and truly begun.”

She added: “We all know that having a home Olympics is unique but the countdown clock is just bringing it all to light. It is all so exciting.”

The chairman of the 2012 games, Seb Coe, witnessed the unveiling, and hoped it would spur British competitors on.

Lord Coe said: “Athletes’ careers are based on timing and I hope that this milestone moment excites and inspires them to compete at the highest level in 2012.”