The first London stadium was built for the 1908 Olympics, which were scheduled to place in Rome, Italy. However, London took over the games after the volcanic eruption of Vesuvius in 1906. The 1908 Great Stadium was built in under a year, at a cost of about £60,000. It could seat 68,000 people, and included a pool for swimming and diving, as well as platforms for wrestling and gymnastics. It had a cycling track around the edge of the running track. The stadium was demolished in 1985.
The new London Olympic Stadium is the venue for the opening and closing ceremonies of the 2012 Olympic Games, as well as all the athletics (track and field) events, except for the marathon and race walks. It includes a 400 meter running track, an 80 meter warm-up track, changing rooms, and medical support facilities. Land preparation on the site began in 2007, and the stadium was completed by March, 2011, at a cost of £500 million.