1948: The Austerity Olympics

We're only three weeks away from the opening of the 2024 Summer Games in Paris. Hosting the Olympics is a big gamble for any city these days because of the expense. Paris budgeted €4.397 billion for the 2024 Olympics. Contrast that with the budget for the 1948 Summer Games in London:  £761,688, which would be £34 million today. That's less than one percent of the Paris budget, considering that pounds, euros, and dollars aren't all that different.

Things were different in 1948. There hadn't been any Olympics since Berlin 1936 due to war. Britain was heavily damaged and still recovering, but the games were an opportunity to raise spirits and show cooperation among the countries of the world. There was no new construction, as Wembley Stadium would do just fine, along with other existing venues. There was no Olympic Village, and athletes were housed in colleges and military bases. They were encouraged to bring their own food, too, since rationing was still in effect. Read about the 1948 games, done on a tight budget, at Messy Nessy Chic.   


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