It’s been months since HRH The Queen popped her message inside the Birmingham-made baton as it set off on its global trip visiting each of the Commonwealth nations and territories.
Thousands of people around the world have welcomed The Queen’s Baton Relay on its way through countries including Pakistan, The Bahamas, New Zealand and Sierra Leone.
But now, as the Commonwealth Games draw ever closer, it’s time for it to make plans to travel through Birmingham - the proud host city where the 2022 baton was skillfully created in the Jewellery Quarter.
Details of the Birmingham 2022 route have been revealed (you can see the full list of places it is visiting below) along with the celebrations in Victoria Square (details below, also)
When will the Queen’s Baton Relay travel through Birmingham?
Birmingham 2022 is hosting the 16th official Queen’s Baton Relay and it will arrive in the city 48 hours before the Commonwealth Games are due to start on July 28 (so it will be here on Wednesday July 27).
Birmingham City Council has revealed that the Birmingham 2022 Queen’s Baton Relay will visit all ten of the city’s Parliamentary constituencies during the final two days of its 294-day journey.
The council has pledged that: “In Birmingham, the Queen’s Baton Relay will provide the opportunity for communities to experience the excitement for Birmingham 2022 in the 48 hours leading up to the 11 days of showstopping sport.
“People in all of the city’s neighbourhoods will only be a short distance from a part of the route and are being warmly welcomed to check out the schedule (detailed below) and plan where they want to cheer the Baton as it makes its way through Birmingham.”
The council further explained that four key themes underpin the two days the Baton will spend in Birmingham. These are:
- Celebrating equality and commonality across the city
- Prioritising inclusivity and showcasing the rich diversity of the city
- Showcasing biodiversity and connectivity
- Engaging and inspiring younger generations in connecting with the Commonwealth and the Games
Whereabouts in Birmingham will I be able to see the Queen’s Baton Relay?
Arriving in Birmingham on Wednesday 27 July, the Baton will begin its tour of the city at the Botanical Gardens, which opened in 1832 and remains one of the city’s biggest attractions to this day.
It will then take in several parks and open spaces as well as locations such as Sarehole Mill (which inspired the literary works of Tolkien), Birmingham City FC’s St Andrew’s Stadium and the Balti Triangle (home to Birmingham’s signature curry dish).
Later on it will arrive at the Gay Village (where the Baton will enjoy a drag queen parade and mini carnival) and Gas Street Basin (where it will be carried aboard various forms of canal transport), ending the day in the heart of the city centre in Victoria Square – where a special celebration event, open to the public, will be staged that evening.
The following morning, Thursday 28 July, will see the final day of the relay start at Birmingham Children’s Hospital (celebrating the efforts of the NHS locally), weaving its way through a number of neighbourhoods taking in more parks and open spaces as well as the likes of the Jewellery Quarter (which contributed to the creation of the Baton).
Later on it will pass landmarks including the Nishkam Centre on the Soho Road, Perry Hall Park, Sutton Coldfield town centre and Aston Villa FC’s home Villa Park before ending at Aston Hall – from where it will then be taken into the Alexander Stadium as part of the Opening Ceremony for the Games.
During the ceremony, the Baton will be opened – and The Queen’s personal message to the Commonwealth, inserted when the relay began at Buckingham Palace on 7 October 2021, then read out.
The full schedule and times are detailed here:
Wednesday 27 July
Botanical Gardens - 0800 - 0830
University of Birmingham - 0845 - 0900
Victoria Common - 0920 - 0955
Rowheath Pavilion - 0955 - 1010
Cotteridge Park - 1035 - 1100
Bournville - 1115 - 1125
King’s Heath Park - 1205 - 1220
Swanshurst Park - 1225 - 1250
Bordesley Recreation Ground - 1445 - 1510
Adderley Park - 1510 - 1520
St Basil’s Milner Court - 1530 - 1540
Kingston Hill Local Park - 1540 - 1545
Birmingham City Football Club - 1545 - 1550
Balti Triangle - 1610 - 1615
Small Heath Park - 1630 - 1700
Hurst Street - 1725 - 1745
Batonbearer Mural (Navigation Street) -1745 - 1755
Mailbox - 1755 - 1800
Gas Street Basin - 1805 - 1810
Brindleyplace - 1810 - 1820
Centenary Square - 1820 - 1830
Victoria Square - 1845 - 1915
Thursday 28 July
Birmingham Children’s Hospital - 0800 - 0820
Aston University Campus - 0820 - 0830
Jewellery Quarter - 0840 - 0900
Nishkam Centre, Soho Road - 0915 - 0925
George’s Park - 0925 - 0930
Perry Hall Park - 0950 - 1020
Sutton Town Centre - 1115 - 1205
New Hall Valley Country Park - 1205 - 1230
Pype Hayes Park - 1230 - 1310
Aston Villa Football Club - 1310 - 1320
Aston Hall - 1320 - 1400
Who will be carrying The Queen’s Baton as it makes its way around Birmingham?
Hundreds of Batonbearers, each with inspiring backgrounds and stories, will have the honour of carrying the Baton during the journey through Birmingham, including those nominated in recognition of their contributions to their local community, whether that be in sport, education, the arts, culture or charity.
What is happening in Victoria Square?
Birmingham as the Proud Host City of the Commonwealth Games will welcome the Queen’s Baton Relay to the city centre with a colourful, fun-filled evening of entertainment in Victoria Square
The free event on 27 July will bring together dance, music and performance from the city’s rich and diverse communities and be hosted by presenter Radzi Chinyanganya with rapper SANITY outside the Council House.
Dhol drummers, Bollywood and street dancers, a brass band, poets, singers, rappers and DJs will all provide the entertainment before and after the baton arrives in Victoria Square at 6.45pm by a special guest.
What has Birmingham City Council said about the Queen’s Baton Relay route?
Cllr Ian Ward, Leader of Birmingham City Council, said: “The Queen’s Baton Relay is a great way for people from all parts of Birmingham city to embrace our status as Proud Host City for the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games.
“We’ve been watching with excitement as the Baton makes its way across the Commonwealth, planning and preparing, so when it comes to Birmingham, we will show how bold and vibrant our city is – giving people a sneak preview of our warmth and hospitality before the Games get underway.
“Through initiatives such as our Celebrating Communities fund for projects in every ward of the city, we are providing plenty of ways for people to get involved with Birmingham 2022, but I’d urge everyone to check out the schedule for the Birmingham leg of the Relay.
“Find a place to cheer our inspirational Batonbearers on, and get involved in this fantastic way you can be a part of the Games.”
What else has the Birmingham 2022 organisers said about the route through the city?
Since its inaugural appearance at the Cardiff 1958 Commonwealth Games, the Queen’s Baton Relay has been a tradition for the Commonwealth Games.
John Crabtree, Chairman of Birmingham 2022, said: “Seeing the route the Queen’s Baton Relay will take through Birmingham provides a real sense for the excitement that will soon captivate this city during the final 48 hours leading up to the Games.
“The two-day relay will be a momentous finale of celebration, following what will have been an incredible journey through the country.
“The calling points along the route offer a truly unique opportunity to showcase the many sides to our wonderful city, draw communitiestogether and offer residents the chance to be enthralled in the spectacle of the Queen’s Baton Relay, whether that’s at an event in the heart of the city, or as it passes landmarks on the outskirts.
“It will also showcase the extraordinary human spirit that exists here, by shining the spotlight on the Birmingham Batonbearers, each nominated and selected for their remarkable achievements and inspiring stories. I would encourage everyone to come out and support these heroes of the community on the relay on the 27 and 28 July.”
The Birmingham Baton route has been shaped following a year of planning and preparation including engagement with all political groups on the city council and West Midlands Police.
Also involved was the council’s own Commonwealth Games and Physical Activity Overview and Scrutiny Committee, whose then-Chair Cllr Mariam Khan played a key role in suggesting ways in which the emerging proposals could be refined to ensure more communities and groups were represented via the final route taken by the relay.
For more information on the Queen’s Baton Relay, visit www.birmingham2022.com/qbr.
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