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OLYMPIC REVIEW53OLYMPIC HISTORYLondon 2012LONDON 1948Games HistoryLondon had originally been chosen to host the 1944Games, which, like the 1940 edition, were cancelled dueto the Second World War. With the conflict ending in1945, plans were made to revive the Games in 1948 and,although the city - and Britain as a whole - was still recoveringfrom the aftermath of the war, London was again put forward as a potential host. Baltimore, Lausanne, Los Angeles, Minneapolis ?LONDON 1948 FACTS NOCs: 59ATHLETES:4,104 (390 WOMEN, 3,714MEN)SPORTS: 17EVENTS: 136

and Philadelphia also submitted applications, but apostal vote saw London receive the overwhelmingmajority of the members' votes, with the decisionannounced in 1946. The city again found itself with only two years toprepare for the Games, and also had to face manyother difficulties that had arisen due to the war, suchas a shortage of housing, food and equipment. In order to overcome these challenges, avolunteer programme was implemented to help stage the Games, while existing sporting facilitieswere adapted to host multiple events. The EmpirePool - the first covered pool in Olympic history -was converted to also stage the majority of theboxing events. In addition, military camps, schools, colleges and hotels were used to house the athletesand officials.With rationing still in place across Britain, manyNOCs chose to bring their own food, while gifts weregratefully received from other countries, with Denmarkdonating 160,000 eggs and the Netherlands sending100 tons of fresh fruit.Due to these measures, London 1948 wouldbecome known as the "Austerity Games", but therewas also a huge amount of progress witnessedduring the Games, with new events introduced, agreater number of female competitors, morecountries than ever before taking part and a numberof technological advancements. Starting blocks and photo finishes were introducedin athletics, while the starter's pistol was linked to anelectronic timer for the first time.With superb organisation and many sportinghighlights, the London 1948 Olympic Games were heralded as a huge success, especially as they helped bring the world back together afterthe war. Czech distance runner Emil Zátopek, who wongold in the 10,000m and was second in the5,000m, said: "After all those dark days - thebombing, the killing, the starvation - the revival ofthe Olympic Games was as if the sun had comeout... Suddenly there were no frontiers, no morebarriers, just the people meeting together."54OLYMPIC REVIEWLondon 2012OLYMPIC HISTORY