Prince Charles has been chosen to represent Queen Elizabeth II at the Opening Ceremony of the Commonwealth Games here, it has been announced.
Buckingham Palace has confirmed that Prince Charles and his wife, the Duchess of Cornwall, will attend the event, scheduled to be held at the Alexander Stadium on July 28.
Price Charles is expected to read out the Queen’s message that has been placed in the Baton, which has been travelling across all 72 nations and territories of the Commonwealth.
It will be the third time in the past four Commonwealth Games that Prince Charles has represented the Queen at the Opening Ceremony.
Addressing leaders of countries set to attend the Games at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in Kigali in Rwanda last month, Prince Charles spoke of his excitement of the staging of Birmingham 2022.
“I can only say that I am greatly looking forward to visiting Birmingham for the Commonwealth Games next month,” said Prince Charles.
“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.
“Your Excellencies, as you, as leaders, champion these values, perhaps you would allow me to propose my own toast – which is to each and every one of you and you don’t have to get up.”
The Queen delivered her speech at Glasgow 2014 – the last time Britain staged the Games – but missed Delhi 2010 and Gold Coast 2018 where Prince Charles took on the royal responsibilities.
Her Majesty was present at a special ceremony at Buckingham Palace in October last year to officially launch the Birmingham 2022 Queen’s Baton Relay.
Her message was placed in the Baton for it to be sealed and locked before setting off on its 294-day journey across the Commonwealth.
More than 7,500 Baton Bearers have been trusted to carry the Baton which will travel approximately 90,000 miles before arriving in Birmingham for the Opening Ceremony.
During her Christmas message, the Queen, aged 96, claimed the Baton is providing a “beacon of hope” and a “chance to celebrate the achievements of athletes and the coming-together of like-minded nations”.
The Queen’s royal duties and official outings have been scaled back due to recent mobility issues.
The Earl and Countess of Wessex are due to attend sporting events during Birmingham 2022, with Prince Edward expected to speak at the Closing Ceremony, scheduled to take place on August 8.
“We are delighted to have such strong support from the royal family, and we know that Her Majesty, our Patron, will be watching and supporting all Commonwealth athletes competing at Birmingham 2022,” a spokesperson from the Commonwealth Games Federation said.