Cultural Olympiad

Inspired by the founder of the modern Olympic movement, Pierre de Coubertin's idea of a marriage of sport and the arts, the Cultural Olympiad is a celebration of Olympic and Paralympic values in the cultural field. The University of Southampton is embracing those values through various artistic events which can involve everyone.

Cultural Open Weekend

Cultural Open Weekend

Open Weekends were part of the UK-wide countdown to the Games, a celebration of Olympic values in the arts.

The Jazz Ticket awarded Inspire Mark

The Jazz Ticket project was granted the Inspire Mark, the badge of the London 2012 Inspire Programme, in April 2010. Presented by Turner Sims, a world-renowned concert hall based at the University’s Highfield Campus, in association with Southampton City Council and Southampton Music Services, The Jazz Ticket was an evening of great music from around the world. Find out more about The Jazz Ticket.

Inspired Medley Mix-up receives award

University of Southampton Maths student Sana Rashid was awarded an Inspire Mark for her ‘Medley Mix-up’ project, which used scrap materials to decorate Southampton’s Bargate Monument for the London 2012 Open Weekend in July 2009. Find out more about the 'Medley Mix-up' project.

World premiere of Spinal Chords

Turner Sims hosted the world-premiere of Spinal Chords by Sally Beamish and performed by The Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment as part of the Cultural Olympiad celebrations in February 2012. Find out more about Spinal Chords.

Southampton’s Musical Alphabet

Turner Sims was the official London 2012 licence holder for the South East’s Music Nation, a weekend of events led by the BBC, which took place across the UK on 3 and 4 March 2012. Find out more about the Musical Alphabet.

Creative Campus Initiative

The University of Southampton was one of 13 universities in the South East that joined forces to form the Creative Campus Initiative, an innovative partnership of 13 higher education institutions in the South East delivering a dynamic programme of cultural events and artworks in response to the 2012 Olympics and Paralympics. Find out more about the Creative Campus Initiative.

Britain’s Olympic history

The fascinating story of Britain's relationship with the Olympic Games is told in a new book by Dr Martin Polley, Senior Lecturer in Sport and one of the UK's leading sport historians. Find out more about Britain's Olympic history.

More information

Arts at Southampton


"The goal of the modern Olympic movement is to contribute to building a peaceful and better world by educating youth through sport practised without discrimination of any kind and in the Olympic Spirit which requires mutual understanding with a spirit of friendship, solidarity and fair play."

Baron Pierre de Coubertin, Founder of the modern Olympics and IOC
A student being awarded the Inspire Mark

A student being awarded the Inspire Mark

The Inspire Mark is awarded to projects genuinely inspired by the Games