30 June 2022
A flotilla of vessels is set to escort the Birmingham 2022 Queen’s Baton Relay, as it crosses Plymouth Sound National Marine Park and arrives in Britain’s Ocean City, as part of a 25-day journey which will see it travel the length and breadth of England.
On Monday 4 July, it’s hoped a fleet of craft, including sailing boats and paddle boards, will take to the water as a show of support as the Baton sets sail from Mount Batten. It’s due to cross the National Marine Park – the UK’s first - on board Plymouth Boat Trips’ e-Voyager. Fittingly for the eco nature of the park, the craft is the UK’s first zero carbon, seagoing electric ferry, providing the Baton with a greener mode of transport.
After passing the historic Pier Masters House, the Baton will arrive on shore at the Barbican Landing Stage where it will be met by the Lord Mayor of Plymouth and other city leaders for a civic welcome at the Mayflower Steps, before its journey around the city.
There will be plenty of opportunity to see the Baton as it journeys through the city between 9am and 10am. Inspirational local heroes have been nominated as Batonbearers and will take it in turns to carry it around the city centre.
The Batonbearers have been chosen because of the positive impact they have made to their local communities: fundraising, volunteering and helping others, despite sometimes facing their own hardships and struggles. They include:
- Matthew Dixon – rising British diving star who is competing at this year’s Commonwealth Games
- Mark Ormrod MBE – former Royal Marine and triple amputee
- Toby Gorniak MBE – Creative Director of Street Factory
- Lara Cook – dance and drama teacher and fundraiser
- Chaz Singh – Plymouth councillor
- Chris Gilchrist – Rhythm City dance founder
- Abigail Daly – swimming mentor
- Sarah Pearson – ex GB Paratriathlete
- David Carney-Haworth – retired police officer and charity founder
- Jade Kingdom – Triathlon fundraiser
- Rebecca Attewell – volunteer at Newquay Surf Lifesaving club
After leaving the Barbican the Baton will head up onto the Hoe then along Armada Way to the Piazza where it will be greeted by takio drumming, puppet performances and dancing courtesy of Barbican Theatre and Exim Dance Company.
It will then make its way around the city centre, finally arriving to an enthusiastic welcome by local schoolchildren at Tavistock Place, outside The Box, before leaving Plymouth for the next leg of its journey to Exeter.
Councillor Pat Patel, Cabinet Member for Customer Services, Culture, Leisure and Sport said:
In this special Platinum Jubilee year I’d encourage everyone to come along and see the spectacle of the Queen’s Relay Baton arrive for the first time across our wonderful Plymouth Sound National Marine Park. It’s an honour for us to be able to show what Britain’s Ocean City has to offer, and to cheer on and share the stories of our local heroes, our Batonbearers, in the true spirt of the event - hope, solidarity, collaboration and inspiration.
The Baton started its epic trip on 7 October 2021 at Buckingham Palace in London, where Her Majesty The Queen placed her message to the Commonwealth inside. By the end of its 294-day Relay it will have visited 72 nations and territories of the Commonwealth, ahead of the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games which begin on the 28 July 2022.
As well as containing The Queen’s Message, the Baton – which has been made from copper, aluminium and brass - has a 360-degree camera, LED lights, sensors that monitor environmental conditions and a platinum stand reflecting the Platinum Jubilee.
Here's where you can see the Baton while it's in Plymouth:
- 9am: The Baton sets sail from Mount Batten and crosses the Plymouth Sound National Marine Park
- 9.20am: A civic welcome at the Mayflower Steps, in a nod to 4 July and Plymouth’s American connections, with the Lord Mayor of Plymouth and other city leaders
- 9.30am: Passing the Plymouth Naval Memorial on Plymouth Hoe, which is dedicated to British and Commonwealth sailors who were lost in the First and Second World Wars with no known grave
- 9.40am: A cultural community welcome in the city centre courtesy of Barbican Theatre and Exim Dance group where there will be taiko drumming, puppet performances and dancing on the Piazza.
- 9.55am: A greeting from local schoolchildren as it arrives at The Box, after which it leaves Plymouth to travel to its next destination - Exeter