|Commonwealth Games Federation Flag|
|Motto||Humanity – Equality – Destiny|
|Occur every||4 years|
|Headquarters||London, England, UK|
|President||HRH Prince Tunku Imran|
|Website||CGF Official Website|
The Commonwealth Games is an international, multi-sport event involving athletes from the Commonwealth of Nations. The event was first held in 1930 and has taken place every four years ever since (except 1942 and 1946 which were cancelled). The Games are described as the third largest multi-sport event in the world after the Olympic Games and the Asian Games.
It was initially known as the British Empire Games and was renamed to the British Empire and Commonwealth Games in 1954 and the British Commonwealth Games in 1970, before finally gaining its current title, the Commonwealth Games, for the 1978 edition. The Games are overseen by the Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF), which also controls the sporting programme and selects the host cities. A host city is selected for each edition and eighteen cities in seven countries have hosted the event.
As well as many Olympic sports, the Games also include some sports that are played mainly in Commonwealth countries, such as lawn bowls, rugby sevens and netball. Only six teams have attended every Commonwealth Games: Australia, Canada, England, New Zealand, Scotland and Wales. Australia has been the highest achieving team for eleven games, England for seven and Canada for one.
Although there are 54 members of the Commonwealth of Nations, 71 teams participate in the Commonwealth Games as a number of British overseas territories, Crown dependencies, and island states compete under their own flag. The four Home Nations of the United Kingdom – England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland – also send separate teams.
A sporting competition bringing together the members of the British Empire was first proposed by the Reverend Astley Cooper in 1891 when he wrote an article in The Times suggesting a "Pan-Britannic-Pan-Anglican Contest and Festival every four years as a means of increasing the goodwill and good understanding of the British Empire".
In 1911, the Festival of the Empire was held in London to celebrate the coronation of King George V. As part of the festival an Inter-Empire Championships was held in which teams from Australia, Canada, South Africa and the United Kingdom competed in events such as boxing, wrestling, swimming and athletics.
In 1928, Melville Marks Robinson of Canada was asked to organise the first British Empire Games. The first Games were held in 1930 in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. The name changed to British Empire and Commonwealth Games in 1954, to British Commonwealth Games in 1970 and assumed the current name of the Commonwealth Games in 1978.
The Commonwealth Paraplegic Games were held alongside the Commonwealth Games from 1962 to 1974. In the regular Commonwealth Games, athletes with a disability were first included in exhibition events at the 1994 Victoria, Canada Games. At the 2002 Manchester Games they were included as full members of their national teams, making them the first fully inclusive international multi-sport games. This meant that results were included in the medal count.
The Empire Games flag was donated in 1931 by the British Empire Games Association of Canada. The year and location of subsequent games were added until the 1950 games. The name of the event was changed to the British Empire and Commonwealth Games and the flag was retired as a result.
The first edition of the event was the 1930 British Empire Games and eleven nations took part. The quadrennial schedule of the games was interrupted by the Second World War and the 1942 Games (set to be held in Montreal) and the 1946 Games were abandoned. The games were continued in 1950 and underwent a name change four years later with the first British Empire and Commonwealth Games in 1954. Over 1000 athletes participated in the 1958 Games as over thirty teams took part for the first time.
The event was briefly known as the British Commonwealth Games for the 1970 and 1974 editions and the 1978 Games, held in Edmonton, Canada, were the first to be held under the title of the "Commonwealth Games". The Edmonton event marked a new high as almost 1500 athletes from 46 countries took part.
Nigeria was the first country to boycott the Commonwealth Games in 1978 in protest over New Zealand's sporting contacts with South Africa. Participation at the 1986 Games was affected by a boycott by 32 African and Caribbean nations in protest to British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher's refusal to condemn sporting contacts of Apartheid era South Africa in 1985, but the Games rebounded and continued to grow thereafter. The 1998 Commonwealth Games in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia saw the sporting programme grow from 10 to 15 sports as team sports were allowed for the first time. Participation also reached new levels as over 3500 athletes represented 70 teams at the event. At the Games in Melbourne in 2006, over 4000 athletes took part in sporting competitions.
The three nations to have hosted the games the most number of times are Australia (5), Canada (4) and New Zealand (3). Furthermore, six editions have taken place, or will take place, in the countries within the United Kingdom (Scotland 3, England 2 and Wales 1). Two cities have held the games on multiple occasions: Auckland (1950 and 1990), and Edinburgh (1970 and 1986).
|Edition||Year||Host City||Host Nation||Start Date||End Date||Sports||Events||Nations||Competitors|
|British Empire Games|
|I||1930||Hamilton||Canada||16 August||23 August||6||59||11||400|
|II||1934||London||England||4 August||11 August||6||68||16||500|
|III||1938||Sydney||Australia||5 February||12 February||7||71||15||464|
|IV||1950||Auckland||New Zealand||4 February||11 February||9||88||12||590|
|British Empire and Commonwealth Games|
|V||1954||Vancouver||Canada||30 July||7 August||9||91||24||662|
|VI||1958||Cardiff||Wales||18 July||26 July||9||94||36||1122|
|VII||1962||Perth||Australia||22 November||1 December||9||104||35||863|
|VIII||1966||Kingston||Jamaica||4 August||13 August||9||110||34||1050|
|British Commonwealth Games|
|IX||1970||Edinburgh||Scotland||16 July||25 July||9||121||42||1383|
|X||1974||Christchurch||New Zealand||24 January||2 February||9||121||38||1276|
|XI||1978||Edmonton||Canada||3 August||12 August||10||128||46||1474|
|XII||1982||Brisbane||Australia||30 September||9 October||10||142||46||1583|
|XIII||1986||Edinburgh||Scotland||24 July||2 August||10||163||26||1662|
|XIV||1990||Auckland||New Zealand||24 January||3 February||10||204||55||2073|
|XV||1994||Victoria||Canada||18 August||28 August||10||217||63||2557|
|XVI||1998||Kuala Lumpur||Malaysia||11 September||21 September||15||213||70||3633|
|XVII||2002||Manchester||England||25 July||4 August||171||281||72||3679|
|XVIII||2006||Melbourne||Australia||15 March||26 March||162||245||71||4049|
|XIX||2010||Delhi||India||3 October||14 October||173||272||71||6700|
|XX||2014||Glasgow||Scotland||23 July||3 August|
|XXI||2018||Gold Coast City||Australia||4 April||15 April|
1Includes 3 team sports 2Includes 4 team sports 3Includes 3 team sports
|1||Australia||Oceania||5 (1938, 1962, 1982, 2006, 2018)|
|2||Canada||Americas||4 (1930, 1954, 1978, 1994)|
|3||New Zealand||Oceania||3 (1950, 1974, 1990)|
|Scotland||Europe||3 (1970, 1986, 2014)|
|5||England||Europe||2 (1934, 2002)|
There are a total of 21 sports (with two multi-disciplinary sports) and a further seven para-sports which are approved by the Commonwealth Games Federation. They are categorised into three types. Core sports must be included on each programme. A number of optional sports may be picked by the host nation, which may include some team sports such as basketball. Recognised sports are sports which have been approved by the CGF but which are deemed to need expansion; host nations may not pick these sports for their programme until the CGF's requirements are fulfilled.
Only six teams have attended every Commonwealth Games: Australia, Canada, England, New Zealand, Scotland and Wales. Australia has been the highest scoring team for eleven games, England for seven and Canada for one.
Very few Commonwealth dependencies and nations have yet to take part:
Lawn bowler Willie Wood from Scotland is the first competitor to have competed in seven Commonwealth Games, from 1974 to 2002. Also, Greg Yelavich, a sports shooter from New Zealand, has won 12 medals in seven games from 1986 to 2010.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Commonwealth Games|
Here you can share your comments or contribute with more information, content, resources or links about this topic.