The Queen’s Baton Relay at the Commonwealth Games

The Queen’s Baton Relay is named after the Buckingham queen, for the first time in 1958 for the VI British Empire and Commonwealth Games organized in Cardiff. This baton was specially designed containing a message from herself which was continued by runners in Cardiff.

Since then at every Commonwealth Games, these relay batons featuring the queen’s message became an integral part of the games, continued at the opening ceremony of each event. The Queen’s Baton Relay for the first time was used outside the host nation at the 1998 Kuala Lumpur Commonwealth Games.

The Queen's Baton Relay
The Queen’s Baton Relay at the Commonwealth Games

Birmingham 2022 Queen’s Baton Relay:

The upcoming Birmingham 2022 Baton relay will be the 16th Relay to travel across 72 commonwealth games nations and territories. As a tradition, the Queen has marked her message on the baton which will be read out at the opening ceremony of the 2022 Birmingham event scheduled on 28th July 2022.

Traveling through different continents Europe, Africa, Asia, Oceania, the Caribbean, and America’s the baton has traveled a 294-day long journey covering approximately 90,000 miles. In each country and territory, the Baton stays for two and four days, where more than 7,500 Batonbearers are trusted to carry the Baton during the relay which is one of the once-in-a-lifetime experiences.

Also Read : A Brief history of the Commonwealth Games

The Baton

The 2022 Birmingham Baton is designed by Zimbabwe-born artist Laura Nyahuye. The baton is prepared using the traditional method of wax casting, in Birmingham Jewellery Quarter. To represent the gold, silver, and bronze medals at the Games, the Baton has been cast in non-precious metals-copper, aluminum, and brass.

Origin of the Baton Relay

It has been more than 60 years, the Queen’s Baton Relay has been an integral part of the Commonwealth Games. According to tradition, the Baton usually starts its journey from the Birmingham Palace in London, but 1970 was the exception, where Queen Elizabeth II sent her message to the athletes of Edinburgh from Canada’s Northwest Territories.

It was for the first time at the 2006 event, the Queen’s Baton traveled all the commonwealth nations and territories reaching Melbourne. At the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games in Australia, the relay traveled over 388 days, with more than 8,000 bearers carrying the Baton over a magnificent distance of 230,000 kilometers.

Batonbearers

This time more than 2,000 Batonbearers will carry the Baton Relay finally reaching the host nation England. The event is more special for being the first major multi-sport event to felicitate more medals to women than men, thus celebrating the strength of women throughout the design of the Baton.

It will be a spectacular event to have 4,500 athletes from 72 nations and territories competing in different sports for 11 days starting from 28th July to 8th August 2022.

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