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Images: Aquatics centre

This is how the £300 million aquatics centre for swimming and diving events at the 2012 Olympics will look in legacy use.

Balfour Beatty formally begins work for the ODA on the showpiece centre today, more than two months ahead of schedule.

The firms piling arm, Stent, has been test piling over the past few weeks but today construction of the 17,500-seat venue starts in earnest.

Designed by architect Zaha Hadid, the east London centre will have a capacity of 2,500 after the Games.