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Georgie Thompson:

A sporting chance

Sport can show the way in fixing broken Britain

Georgie Thompson Posted 19th August 2011 view comments

I was making my way into central London from Sky Studios a couple of weeks ago when I found myself switching lanes not once or twice, but three times for what appeared to be a never-ending cavalcade of police cars, fire engines and ambulances.

I figured someone somewhere must be in a whole lot of trouble but the thought didn't linger long. Us city dwellers have a nonchalant approach to such sights, they are part of urban daily life and are treated with something of a laissez-faire attitude. It's not right but that's just the way things are, isn't it?

Turning the tide:

Turning the tide:

As it turned out that Monday night was like nothing any of us had seen before.

I had left work as usual after my shift at 7.00pm. We have a bank of monitors and screens in our Sky Sports News studio and one of them was showing output from Sky News.

There were some scuffles breaking out on the streets around Tottenham and from what was being reported, they were spreading to nearby Hackney and beyond.

The question that has been asked so frequently since, now the dust has settled - figuratively and literally - what do we do about fixing it? Some have suggested sport can play a big part in the rehabiliation of our disaffected youth. I agree.

Georgie Thompson
Quotes of the week

While what I had seen prior to dashing out of the office that evening had looked worrying, I like many others presumed the problem would be contained and the police would restore order.

Then the unthinkable happened; rioting, looting, beatings, not just in the capital but in Birmingham, Manchester and Bristol; Britain was breaking in front of our eyes and on our doorsteps.

Transform

The question that has been asked so frequently since, now the dust has settled - figuratively and literally - what do we do about fixing it?

Some have suggested sport can play a big part in the rehabiliation of our disaffected youth. I agree.

This week on the Special Report we're in London, Manchester and Sheffield looking at ways in which sport can be used to transform the lives of troubled youngsters.

We have commissioned an online survey which many of you have been kind enough to fill in.

Thank you for taking time to do that, it's been more than helpful for us in putting together a fair and balanced report. The findings do make fascinating reading and we'll take you through those in tonight's programme.

Food for thought though ahead of this week's Special Report, the Manchester City-supported football training scheme we visited found that while the camp is on-going crime in the area reduces by up to 30 per cent.

Proof enough, I think, that sport can help.

Join me on the Special Report, Mondays at 7.30pm on Sky Sports News HD channel 405. If you forget to Sky + our weekly report you can always catch it on Sky Anytime and follow me on twitter @officiallyGT.

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