London still welcomes visitors, despite riots

Tourism chief executive urges people to attend 2012 Olympics

Tourists considering a visit to London for the 2012 Olympic Games should not be frightened by the recent dramatic images of rioting, said the chief executive of UKInbound, Mary Rance. The riots should be seen as a flash protest and must be kept in context, she said. The riots in different parts of the British capital have included looting, violence and burning buildings and vehicles. “We are not alone in public unrest issues, as we have seen in Greece and across Europe this year,” Rance said, adding that London remains one of the world’s safest cities. “We are buzzing with international tourists. We take safety incidents very seriously but at the moment it is business as usual.” Mayor of London Boris Johnson repeated the message. “London is one of the friendliest and safest cities in the world compared with cities such as Amsterdam, Paris and New York. People will come to London next year and will have a great Games, because we’ve put on the greatest show on earth.”
[pictured: The Great Fire of London (1666), painter anonymous]