The Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games Queen’s Baton Relay will be visiting the Festival of Suffolk Community Games on Saturday 9th July, it has been announced.
The Games is hosting the 16th official Queen’s Baton Relay – a journey which brings together and celebrates communities across the Commonwealth during the build up to the Games. In England, the Queen’s Baton Relay will provide the opportunity for communities to experience the excitement of Birmingham 2022, as the 11 days of show stopping sport nears ever closer.
The Queen’s Baton Relay is set to travel the length and breadth of England for a total of 29 days, before culminating at the Opening Ceremony for Birmingham 2022 on 28 July 2022 and organisers of the Festival of Suffolk Community Games are delighted to have been chosen as one of the locations enroute to Birmingham.
David Sheepshanks CBE DL, one of the Directors of the Festival of Suffolk and Chair of the Community Games organising committee said:
“Having come on its journey across all the Commonwealth Countries, it is an honour to have the Queens Baton Relay visit us at the Festival of Suffolk Community Games. It is a huge thrill and will be the icing on the cake for our special day. We aim to make the Festival of Suffolk Community Games a celebration: a mega fun and memorable day for all who attend; whether competing, trying their hand at new sports and activities, or simply spectating. We intend to have something for everyone, particularly those individuals who do not usually get a chance to participate in such an event.”
The announcement that the Queens Baton Relay Batonbearers will be part of the afternoons schedule of planned activity at the Suffolk Community Games is a real privilege and will add to the gravitas, of what is promised to be an already memorable day. The Festival of Suffolk Community Games which will be hosted by Abbeycroft Leisure and the King Edward VI School in Bury St Edmunds would not be possible without those who are supporting the day, including the Festival of Suffolk headline Sponsor: Tru7 Group, plus the local authorities: Suffolk County Council, West Suffolk Council, East Suffolk Council, Babergh and Mid Suffolk District Council and Ipswich Borough Council. Vertas will be providing transport allowing communities from across the county to access the event, whilst key partners including Special Olympics Suffolk, Ipswich Town Community Trust, Suffolk FA, Inspire Suffolk, and delivery partners are playing a pivotal role in bringing the schedule of activities together for the day.
Cllr Bobby Bennett, Suffolk County Council’s Cabinet Member for Equality and Communities, said:
“It’s great recognition that the Festival of Suffolk Community Games has been chosen to receive a visit from the Queen’s Baton Relay on its tour around the Commonwealth.
The Baton will add an extra bit of sparkle and excitement to what promises to be a hugely enjoyable and memorable day for everyone taking part and involved in the Community Games.”
Active Suffolk, the lead organisers of the Suffolk Community Games have collaborated with several delivery partners and plans for the event are now firmly underway. The day already boasts a full schedule of traditional and non-traditional activities, ranging from skateboarding, multi-sport competitions, football, Special Olympics and paddle boarding to name a select few. In line with the vision of Active Suffolk and their primary funders, Sport England the event aims to offer those across the county with the opportunity to try new activities they may not ordinarily have the chance to, due to health inequalities such as finances, long term conditions, disability, and accessibility. In addition to the activities on offer, the excitement of the Queen’s Baton Relay is also expected to bring communities together for an inspiring and memorable celebration.
Gareth Davies, Director of Active Suffolk said:
“Active Suffolk was honoured to be asked to support the delivery of this blue-ribbon event for inclusive physical activity. By offering a range of diverse activities we hope that those attending will be able to find an activity that they can become passionate about and continue to undertake in the future. To have the Queen’s Baton Relay visiting the event is a huge privilege and further enhances the profile of what will no doubt prove to be an outstanding day of sport and physical activity.”
Cllr Letitia Smith, East Suffolk Council’s Cabinet Member for Communities, Leisure and Tourism said:
“We are looking forward to the Suffolk Community Games, and the wider Festival of Suffolk itself. The games will offer local young people the chance to get involved with fun activities, meet new people and try a range of different sports, whilst raising aspirations and increasing self-confidence.”
Thousands of Batonbearers, each with inspiring backgrounds and stories, will have the honour of carrying the Baton during the journey through England, including those nominated in recognition of their contributions to their local community, whether that be in sport, education, the arts, culture or charity. Our Suffolk born Batonbearer will be welcomed to the Festival of Suffolk Community Games, further inspiring the young people, their families and spectators who attend.
Cllr Jo Rayner, West Suffolk Council’s Cabinet member for Culture and Leisure said:
“West Suffolk actively promotes the vital importance of being physically active for both the individual and community benefits it brings. I am delighted that the Queen’s Baton Relay coincides with the Suffolk Community Games being held here in Bury St Edmunds. I hope as many families as possible come along and get involved in the great programme, and draw inspiration from the Commonwealth Games. All will find a very warm welcome and have a wonderful day.”
The Birmingham 2022 website will continue to be updated with information on the Queen’s Baton Relay route, including details of events and where to line the route. Further information about the Queen’s Baton Relay journey in Suffolk will be shared via local authorities and announcements regarding the local Batonbearers will be available following this announcement.