Commonwealth Games: Prince Charles to speak at opening

By James FitzGerald

BBC News

Prince CharlesImage source, Getty Images

Image caption,

During a summit of Commonwealth leaders in Rwanda last month, Charles said he was looking forward to the Games

The Prince of Wales will give a speech during the opening ceremony of the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham next week, Buckingham Palace has announced.

Prince Charles will be representing the Queen, a statement said. He will be accompanied by the Duchess of Cornwall.

The event will be formally opened on 28 July at the revamped Alexander Stadium.

Other royals including the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are set to attend the Games, which close on 8 August.

The Queen, 96, has been scaling back her public appearances due to some mobility issues.

At the end of her Platinum Jubilee celebrations, she said she was committed to serving the country “to the best of my ability, supported by my family”.

Prince Charles’s speech will include a message from his mother, which was placed inside the Commonwealth Games baton last October.

The baton was taken on a 294-day tour of all 72 nations and territories of the Commonwealth.

During a summit of Commonwealth leaders in Rwanda last month, Prince Charles said he was looking forward to visiting the games.

He said: “In a world currently riven by conflict and division, these games – so aptly called ‘the friendly games’ – stand as a shining celebration of our unity, our diversity and our pursuit of shared excellence.”

The Earl and Countess of Wessex are among other royals expected to watch the sporting action in Birmingham, and to attend events celebrating the efforts of competitors, staff and volunteers.

Prince Edward, who has been the vice-patron of the Commonwealth Games Federation since 1990, will speak during the closing event on 8 August.

How to watch the Games

The 22nd Commonwealth Games take place in Birmingham from 28 July to 8 August and BBC Sport will bring you live coverage of every session.

You can catch all the must-see moments during more than 200 hours of live coverage on BBC One, BBC Two and BBC Three.

There will be up to 11 live streams on BBC iPlayer and the BBC Sport website, with additional coverage on the Red Button to ensure you can watch your favourite sport.

The best of the day’s action will be shown on highlights programme Tonight at the Games every evening on BBC One.

The BBC Sport website and app will also feature live text, video clips, reports, analysis and results.

BBC Radio 5 Live and Radio 5 Sports Extra will host live commentary on athletics, swimming, netball, cricket and boxing and provide updates on all the latest Games headlines across the daily programming.

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