Today I had a behind the scenes tour of the Birdsnest Stadium and the Aquatic Centre. Both are huge, much huger than ours will be in London. They are also beautifully designed both inside and out. The Chinese have decided that Beijing 2008 is going to about spectacular venues - and they have delivered. What struck me first was how difficult it is to build a venue that is large enough to host the Olympics, and yet not so large that it becomes a white elephant afterwards (e.g. Athens). The London facilities have been carefully designed so they can be massively reduced in size after the Games to avoid this - the stadium reducing from 90,000 seats to just 25,000 for example. This requires getting a tricky balance right between temporary and permanent structures. The second thing that struck me was the huge blocks of seating that have to be reserved for the press and Olympic dignitaries. These are very rarely full even during the Games. Nothing would annoy the British public more than stacks of empty seats when tickets have sold out. I know this is something the London 2012 team want to avoid. Final Olympic bit of trivia: you thought it was all over for competitors after their races? Not at all. They have to go straight from their races to a long penned walk through area (like airport check in queues) where journalists and TV crews fire questions at them. Fine for the winners, but must be grim for the rest.