Watch: Commonwealth Games Queen’s Baton Relay comes to Birmingham neighbourhoods

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People across Birmingham are welcoming the Commonwealth Games to their city - we catch up with the crowds in Kings Heath Park

The Commonwealth Games are here, and BirminghamWorld joined the crowds who came out to welcome the Queen’s Baton as it travelled on its first leg through Birmingham, signalling the start of the festivities and events around the 11 days of sport.

The relay began last October with Her Majesty the Queen placing her message to the Commonwealth into the Birmingham-made Baton.

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Over its 294 day long journey the baton has traversed across all 72 nations and territories of the Commonwealth in a bid to ignite hope, solidarity and collaboration - connecting many unique cultures all tied together under the banner of the Commonwealth.

It arrived in Birmingham at Botanical Gardens yesterday (Monday, July 27) and made its way around neighbourhoods across the south of the city, including Kings Heath Park where we caught up with it.

Tom Jenkins, Batonbearer and founder of the charity Nightlife OutreachTom Jenkins, Batonbearer and founder of the charity Nightlife Outreach
Tom Jenkins, Batonbearer and founder of the charity Nightlife Outreach | Local TV

Tom Jenkins, one of the Batonbearers and founder of substance abuse charity Nightlife Outreach, told us: “Yeah, so it felt amazing being part the Birmingham Commonwealth Games.

“It’s really exciting that it’s come to the city. And it’s really good to take part. I was nominated for starting a charity that focuses on mental health and substance abuse, called Nightlife Outreach. And we do a lot of work with the LGBT community in Birmingham.

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“It’s great that we’re showcasing all these different community groups, and all the different volunteers and charities. And it’s kind of a thank you to all the people that work in the city to make it such a wonderful place.

“It’s really good to be thanked by the city that we live in, especially when we’re trying to help and set things up to sort of support people in our community. And it’s really good that sort of games are in the city, showcasing what we do.”

The Baton is set to visit all ten of the city’s constituencies with the final journey taking place today (Thursday, July 28) ahead of the Opening Ceremony at the Alexander Stadium. It is being carried by hundreds of local community heroes.

The Commonwealth Games is the largest event in the history of the city and over a million visitors will be welcomed to the West Midlands over the coming weeks. The excitement that has been brewing since the announcement the city would be hosting the Commonwealth is reaching its boiling point, as the global spotlight shines brightly on Birmingham.

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