I had a rather heated argument with my housemate the other day. Not on politics, religion or Masterchef, but about the Millennium Dome of all things. Nine years later it continues to rear its ugly head over the British consciousness. Will it ever let us go so that we can be free and skip gaily through the fields of freedom?
For those of you not familiar with this, the Millennium Dome was pretty much all the newspapers talked about from 1998 to 2000 (once Princess Diana had finished being dead). For some dumb reason (culture apparently) the government decided to build a giant dome costing 600 million pounds. Of course in this day and age of ‘yeah failing bank, have a million trillion quid’ this doesn’t seem as bad, but at the time it was unprecedented.
For the millennium then, the citizens of this fine country got a big dome. Unfortunately the government hadn’t a clue what to do with it – Peter Mandelson the minister in charge, even suggested leaving it empty. Part of me hopes it was a joke, of course the other part knows how inept governments can be. Really, to celebrate the millennium the government could have used the money to give everyone in the country a tenner and we’d have been far happier. Better that than some awful tourist attraction.
This was where the argument with my housemate comes in. He tried to tell me that it was the biggest attraction in Britain that year thus it was a success. But really, you’re always going to get people gaggling at a train wreck. At the end of the day it didn’t pull in nearly half the visitors it wanted, and ended up using 600 million of public money. On an awful tourist attraction!
And I know this, because I went there! › Continue reading