There were about 30 of us in the group taken downstairs to the offices and rooms underneath the stadium. We walked down the escalators, through the VIP entrance, through a labrynth of corridors until finally we arrived at a print room.

We were welcomed by Helen (I think) who explained how the print room worked, and a few other bits and pieces. She explained that the group was to be further split up. Those of us who were IT technician team members, and those who were IT Helpdesk team members would soon to move to another room. She also mentioned that those of us IT technician team members who had a 5 on their passcards would require a new passcard, adding a 4 to it as well. Not sure why at this stage, but I would have to get a 4 added to my passcard.

We were then broken up into our separate groups. There were about 10 of us in this smaller breakaway group of IT Technician and help desk team members in this new room, a breezeblock built room with no windows, some comfy chairs, air conditioning and desks full of PCs. My hunches had been right, I would be in a concrete basement with no views outside and wouldn’t see any events. But where was the server with the flashing LED I wondered?
We were introduced to the Venue IT manager, practically the head honcho, only the IT manager back at HQ and the Venue general manager had more authority.
He took us through a slide deck detailing what we would be doing, finally I found out some more about my role, we would be responsible for the IT infrastructure in the Olympic stadium! We learned that we would not be answerable to a supervisor (like the rest of the 70,000 Gamesmakers) oh no we would be answerable directly to him! He was our boss. He also appeared quite strict to start with, informing us that we must check in at least 10-20 mins early so that we could start our shifts exactly on time, we had to ensure all the IT was fit for purpose early in the morning, ready use as soon as people arrived! We were also informed not to share any information with the media even if they pleaded with us, or be seen running anywhere, as in the past there had been occasions where the press had followed hapless volunteers hoping to get a scoop.
Reminding us again about not taking any photos, he explained that he had to remove someone from site already for taking pictures. Made me listen, I can tell you!

We finished the presentation, and he asked us if we had any questions. I asked how many others had already been through the training. My jaw dropped when he explained that we were the first group. How many other training sessions will you be running I then asked? None he said, you’re it. Out of 70,000 Gamesmakers and 5,000 technology team members there would be just 10 of us. Wow, I would be one of only about 10 Gamesmakers working in the IT team in the Olympic stadium!

He offered us some lunch, and we continued to ask questions. The breezeblock room would be our office, we’d be issued tasks by him, or from one of his team. He advised us that we would spend most of our time in the office and to be prepared, we should bring a book for the quiet times as the objective is for all the IT to be working and therefore hopefully there would be times where we could relax!
He also suggested that they would try and get some large plasma screens in so that we could watch some of the events (it was unlikely that we would see any action by any other means) and there was WiFi too, so we could stay in touch, although not to post too much information or any pictures!

It was with mixed emotions I left the stadium on the day, it was gorgeous, and I would get to see the outside every day. My job sounded really interesting, and I would be one of only about 10 out of 70,000 Gamesmakers doing this role. However I would spend all my time in a concrete and breezeblock room, with no daylight or any chance to see the events.

But I was a volunteer, for the 2012 Olympic games, at the London Olympic Stadium, it was still going to be so cool and such a buzz. I couldn’t wait for it to start.

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