Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games: What it’s really like to be a Queen’s Batonbearer for the Games

The Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games, held from 28 July until 8 August 2022, will be a once in a lifetime opportunity to put the city and its people on the global stage.   

The Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth games recently confirmed the inspirational people from communities across England who will take on the role of Batonbearer in the Queen’s Baton Relay this summer.

The Queen’s Baton Relay is a Games tradition that helps connect communities across the Commonwealth and shines a light on untold stories and unsung local heroes from the places it visits.

The Baton is currently on a journey across the Commonwealth, where it is visiting Europe, Africa, Asia, Oceania, the Caribbean, and the Americas.

Nine of the thousands of confirmed community Batonbearers came together at the Alexander Stadium, where the Relay will reach its finale.

It will return home to the West Midlands on 18 July, in the final ten-day countdown to Birmingham 2022, which commences on 28 July.

What’s it like to be a batonbearer?

Batonbearers will play an integral role in the Queen’s Baton Relay when it returns to England this summer, taking on the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to carry the Queen’s Baton in their region and building excitement for the highly-anticipated Commonwealth Games.

They will join over 7,500 Batonbearers that have already passed the Baton between communities on the international journey.

Brummie writer and entrepreneur CJ Lloyd Webley has been chosen as a Batonbearer for the West Midlands for making a positive impact within his community.

The writer, who grew up on an Erdington council estate, discovered his passion for performing arts at an early age diverting him away from a life of crime.

He forged a career in writing for the stage, from a socially conscious perspective, telling the stories of people within his own communities and walks of life.

His latest works have tackled men’s mental health and have explored the impact of Covid-19 on key workers such as delivery drivers and shop assistants.

During the pandemic, he created the Black Pounds Project, which offers support to many black and diverse business owners, helping them launch and develop careers.

Now CJ will join 2,022 other British people in representing their regions in the Queen’s Baton Relay.

Speaking about being a Batonbearer, he said: “I’m so honoured to have been chosen as a Batonbearer for the West Midlands. Being able to carry the Baton in my home area is so special.

“The anticipation is really ramping up for the Queen’s Baton Relay and Birmingham 2022. I’m thrilled I get to play a part in it.”

The Baton is currently visiting the Cayman Islands, which is the Baton’s 50th destination out of 72.

As a tradition of the Commonwealth Games, the Queen’s Baton Relay builds anticipation for the Games ahead by celebrating, connecting, and exciting communities across the Commonwealth and highlighting untold stories and unsung local heroes from the places it visits.

In the last 30 days, the Baton has visited Australia, Belize, Guyana, Grenada, The Bahamas and Turks & Caicos.

On its tour of Commonwealth nations and territories, the Queen’s Baton will briefly arrive back in England on 2 June 2022 for a four-day visit to London - coinciding with The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee Central Weekend.

The full list of Batonbearers in England:

CJ Lloyd-Webley, West Midlands

Yasmin Hussain, London

Samuel Russell-Pierce, South West

Freya Levy, East of England

Amdani Juma, East Midlands

Harleen Kaur, Yorkshire & The Humber

Nicola Wood, North East

Lyndon Chatting-Walters, North West

Tom Clarke-Forrest, West Midlands

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