Bellingen Shire to welcome Queen's Baton in the lead up to Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games

2018 Commonwealth Games Relay Baton

Local legends are being called on to carry the Queen’s Baton in Bellingen as it prepares to host the Queen’s Baton Relay.

The eyes of the Commonwealth will be on Bellingen on 1 February 2018 as the Baton journeys towards its final destination, the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games (GC2018) Opening Ceremony on 4 April 2018.

Across Australia approximately 3,800 batonbearers are needed to share the dream of the ‘friendly Games’ as part of the QBR.

A community nomination program, which opens today, will offer the people of the Bellingen Shire and the surrounding region with an opportunity to carry the Baton.

Batonbearers are people of all abilities who inspire others to be great. Batonbearers will represent a community with pride and showcase to the world the region’s stunning landscape, creative culture and wonderful people.

Setting off in Australia on 25 December 2017, the Baton will travel for 100 days to connect with as many people as possible in every state and territory.

The Queen’s Baton carries a message from Her Majesty The Queen through the entire Commonwealth. The Games are declared officially open when the message is read aloud.

In just eight days the Baton will start its global journey at Buckingham Palace on Commonwealth Day, Monday 13 March. It will travel through every Commonwealth nation and territory on its way to Australia.

From today until 15 May 2017, anyone can nominate a person who inspires them to be great. Nominations can be made at the official website https://www.gc2018.com/qbr

GC2018 are looking for people who:

  • Have achieved something extraordinary or inspired others to achieve something extraordinary; or
  • Have made a significant contribution to either sport, education, the arts, culture, charity or within our community; or
  • Have excelled, or aspire to excel athletically or personally; or
  • Contribute to a fun, friendly, vibrant and inclusive community;
  • Are at least 10 years old as at 25 December 2017; and
  • Are an Australian citizen or lawfully entitled to reside in Australia during the Relay period (25 December 2017 – 4 April 2018).

GOLDOC CEO Mark Peters: “We are very pleased to present the domestic leg of the Queen’s Baton Relay. Like the Baton design that we revealed in November last year, the Relay has been designed to be as inclusive and accessible to as many Australians as possible.

“GOLDOC consulted with all state and territory governments, hundreds of local authorities and many other organisations when determining Celebration Communities across Australia.

“Planning the Queen’s Baton Relay through the entire Commonwealth and every state and territory of Australia is a logistical feat that is testament to the first-class team of people we have here at GOLDOC.”

Bellingen Shire Mayor, Cr Dominic King said “We are delighted to be a part of an event that will take Bellingen to the world and I encourage residents to nominate a local legend you think deserves to be a Batonbearer, whether they are an aspiring young person or someone who is already accomplished.

“The Queen’s Baton Relay is a rare opportunity to shine a light on the people and places that help make our community truly great.

“The Queen’s Baton Relay is not only a symbol of the Commonwealth Games, but an event that will connect Bellingen with communities across Australia and the entire Commonwealth.

“It’s a tradition that celebrates community pride and that shows us how important a role sport plays to build our great community, which is why we’ve chosen to embrace the Baton’s visit wholeheartedly. And it means Bellingen will play an important part in the largest multi-sport event to be staged in Australia in a decade.

“I for one can’t wait for the start of the QBR on Commonwealth Day, Monday 13 March, and to follow its journey around the world on its way to Bellingen and the Opening Ceremony of the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games,” added the Mayor.