Lisburn will join the celebration of Commonwealth sport today (Friday) when the Queen’s Baton relay will reach the city.
The Queen’s Baton arrived in Northern Ireland on Tuesday for a four-day tour, and it will stop off in the city on the final day of the NI leg of the relay.
The Baton relay is a long-standing part of the build up to the Commonwealth Games, which will be held in Glasgow from July 23 to August 3, having been the curtain-raiser to the Games since 1958.
Welcoming the Baton to Lisburn, Mayor Councillor Margaret Tolerton, said: “The Council is delighted that Lisburn has been chosen as one of the stops for the Queen’s Baton as part of its 190,000 kilometre relay journey to mark the start of the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow.
“I hope that many residents, young and old, will get the chance to see the Baton as it makes its way to the City of Lisburn Racquets Club at midday on Friday May 23.
“This local facility was selected as an official venue for the badminton and volleyball events at the World Police and Fire Games last year; and it is excellent that it will play a role in marking the Commonwealth Games this year. On behalf of the Council I wish all the baton holders every success as they carry this unique silver and wood baton on the reminder of its journey through Great Britain,” she concluded.
The Baton contains a message from the Queen calling athletes to competition in Glasgow and will be read out at the Opening Ceremony on July 23.
The Northern Ireland route will be based around specific events rather than a street relay as witnessed during 2012.
The Baton was specially-designed for Glasgow 2014, with the titanium, wood and granite creation symbolising Glasgow and Scotland’s culture, history and innovation by combining leading-edge technology with traditional skills and craft.
Following its time in Northern Ireland the Baton will then travel to Wales and England - culminating in a 40-day tour of Scotland.