Both the velodrome and the Commonwealth swimming pool are open to the public and are frequently used by local schools and the local community. Over the last six years young people have been inspired to take up swimming and cycling more seriously; some of them are now coming through as Olympic champions or hopefuls.
Even though I support the blue side of Manchester's football heritage, I don't really mind that wherever I go in the world it's not Manchester City that starts the conversation. 'Ah, yes, Manchester United,' is the response when I say where I come from. It's commonplace everywhere - in Europe, Africa, Asia and even the U.S.
Some argue that now isn't the time to push the green agenda - that all efforts should be on preventing a serious recession. That is a false choice. It fails to recognise that climate change and our carbon reliance is part of problem - high fuel prices and food shortages due to poor crop yields compound today's financial difficulties.
In an era when party fundraising is badly tainted, dinners are a really good way of raising cash for campaigning. Lots of people giving very small amounts of money through ticket sales and raffle prizes: yes, it's much harder work than big donations, but I think it's a more democratic and transparent way of fundraising.