The Queen's Baton Relay was launched on 9 October 2013 at the Buckingham Palace, London. Chris Hoy, the Scottish cycling star carried the Commonwealth Games baton to Buckingham Palace on 9 October 2013 for starting the relay which in turn will conclude with opening ceremony of the Commonwealth Games in 2014 in Glasgow. The message written by Queen Elizabeth II, the head of the Commonwealth is written in the baton which started its 248-day journey around 70 nations and territories.
The message written by Queen Elizabeth II will remain secret till the opening ceremony at Glasgow’s Celtic Park on 23 July 2013. Scottish sprint legend Allan Wells was the first athlete to receive this baton from the Queen to begin its journey.
It is important to note that this year Indian sportspersons will not get a chance to hold the Queens Baton of the 2014 Commonwealth Games and run in relay on 12-13 October 2013. The Queen’s Baton will remain in India for two days, 12-13 October 2013. After arriving in India on 11 October 2013, the Baton will reach Agra. Thereafter, the Baton will return to Delhi on 13 October 2013 and then proceed to Dhaka.
Meaning and Importance of the Queen's Baton Relay
• The Queen's Baton Relay is like the Olympic Torch Relay.
• It is like the relay across the world before the beginning of the Commonwealth Games.
• The importance of the Baton is that it carries the message from the Head of the Commonwealth, who at present is Queen Elizabeth II.
• As a custom, the Queen's Baton Relay begins at the Buckingham Palace in London.
• At the Commonwealth Games opening ceremony, the final relay runner gives back the baton to the Queen or the representative of the Queen, who then reads aloud the message officially at the Opening Ceremony.
• The Queen's Baton Relay was at first introduced at the 1958 British Empire and Commonwealth Games in Cardiff, Wales.
• The 2014 Queen's Baton’s handle is made out of Elm wood and is crafted by making use of the old boat building technique called bird mouthing.