Clackmannanshire is tomorrow, Wednesday 25 June, set to welcome the Queen’s Baton as it travels through the area, with a range of extraordinary batonbearers taking part in day 260 of the baton’s journey through 70 nations and territories of the Commonwealth.
Comedian, actress and writer Susan Calman will bring the baton to Clackmannan Tower shortly after 9am, one of the spectacular historic landmarks in the area.
The Queen’s Baton Relay will venture across Clackmannanshire, visiting several communities including Alloa, Sauchie, Dollar, Alva, Fishcross and Tullibody. The day is packed with historic sites, with visits planned to Clackmannan Tower, Menstrie Castle and Castle Campbell in Dollar, where the baton will travel via quad bike. Schools being visited include Dollar Academy, Menstrie Primary School and Tullibody’s Lornshill Academy. An evening celebration will honour the day’s batonbearers at the academy, with the baton expected to arrive on stage shortly after 6:30pm.
The baton will be carried by a varied group of batonbearers, those astonishing individuals who make a difference to the lives to others. There’s Jack Twist, whose muscular condition severely restricts movement but doesn’t stop him from participating in sport. He recently reached the Scottish Disability Schools National Athletics Finals and was last year’s Powerchair Slalom Champion.
Other tenacious youngsters set to carry the baton include Katie Riddell, who received her black belt in Taekwondo at only 12 years old and has since gone on to train with Team Scotland. Batonbearer Sammi Tasker is a talented individual, the only female in Britain to feature in national championships across three disciplines of motorcycle racing.
Athletes carrying the baton include double Commonwealth Games Gold medalist Jennifer McIntosh, with highly-rated wheelchair racer Meggan Dawson-Farrell taking the final batonbearer slot of the day. Long-serving Team Scotland chef de mission Jon Doig will participate in the relay through Menstrie.
A unique tradition of the games, the relay offers people across the country a chance to be a part of the excitement, celebrations and countdown to Scotland’s biggest-ever sporting and cultural festival and show their support for the home team.
For the first time in the history of the Commonwealth Games, a pupil from every school in Scotland has been nominated to get involved in the celebrations and carry the baton, making it the world's most engaging relay to date.
Nearing the end of its 190,000 km journey through the 70 nations and territories of the Commonwealth, by the time the baton arrives at the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games Opening Ceremony, it will have covered 4,000 km in Scotland alone, showcasing the nation’s culture and iconic landmarks during its visit to over 400 communities across all 32 local authorities.
The relay reflects the important role of sport by visiting schools, sporting facilities and leisure centres, encouraging communities to get behind Team Scotland, get involved with the Games and using its profile to get more people participating in sport.
Commonwealth Games Scotland Chairman, Michael Cavanagh, said:
“The Queen’s Baton Relay is the ultimate symbol of the Commonwealth Games and its arrival in Clackmannanshire and journey through Scotland is an important signal to both the athletes and the public that the Games are just around the corner. The relay offers residents in Clackmannanshire the ideal opportunity to celebrate community sport and show support for their local athletes selected to represent Team Scotland at Glasgow 2014. We hope everyone the length and breadth of the country will get behind the team and play their part in what is going to be an amazing home Games!”
David Grevemberg, Chief Executive of Glasgow 2014, said:
"The Queen’s Baton Relay is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for people across Clackmannanshire to celebrate what’s extraordinary and unique about their community, and honour those locals who make a difference to others. The baton is visiting hundreds of villages, towns and cities across Scotland with thousands taking part in the relay, and many more attending the vast programme of sports and cultural events along the route. It's a great reason for Clackmannanshire to get out and celebrate the countdown to the biggest festival of sport and culture this nation has ever hosted".
Clackmannanshire Provost, Tina Murphy said:
"The excitement of the Queen's Baton Relay has given our local communities the chance to get involved in organising events that everyone can take part in throughout Clackmannanshire. The evening event at Lornshill will be a fitting end to the day of fun and enjoyment in Clackmannanshire, and I'm sure people will grasp the opportunity to witness the spectacle of the Queen's Baton Relay and to share in the magic of the 2014 Games right here."