What it’s all about: Commonwealth Games spirit hits Manchester to delight of chief executive Adam Paker

Thousands of people flocked to Congleton Park on Saturday to welcome the Queen’s Baton to Manchester ahead of the Commonwealth Games.

The baton relay is part of the traditional build-up to the Games, with the baton visiting more than 70 countries on its route to Glasgow for the opening ceremony this summer.

Cyclists Jess Varnish and Matt Crampton helped welcome the baton to the city at the National Cycling Centre, where members of the public got to try their hand at a variety of sport taster sessions.

The baton then made its way to the National Squash Centre at the Etihad, where world champion Laura Massaro was on hand to meet the baton bearers.

Up to 20,000 people then welcomed it to Congleton Park as the baton moved south, with 1964 Olympic 800m champion Anne Packer among the bearers.

The park hosted a variety of sports including seated rowing and tag rugby for people to take part in, and Commonwealth Games England chief executive Adam Paker said: “This is what it’s all about.

“This is a chance for us to bring the baton to Congleton and to hopefully inspire people with the Commonwealth Games spirit and not just get people watching sport but trying out sports as well.”

After leaving Congleton Park the baton made its way to Old Trafford where Manchester United legend Bryan Robson received it on the pitch as part of a relay involving local schoolchildren.

The Baton made its way to Sheffield overnight as part of a journey that will see it visit the Olympic Park and No. 10 Downing Street on Thursday.

Related Articles