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Basseterre, St. Kitts, June 26, 2017 (SKNIS): A ceremony held at Government House on June 26, 2017, marked the official commencement of the Queen’s Baton Relay in the Federation. This auspicious occasion highlights the travelling of the Queen’s Baton throughout the 70 Commonwealth countries leading up to the 2018 Commonwealth Games to be held in Australia.

“It is a pleasure for me to welcome you to Government House and to welcome the Queen’s Baton,” said Governor General, His Excellency Sir Tapley Seaton, as he expressed his delight in hosting the event. “I note that her Majesty the Queen launched this relay and it is significant that it will be going right around all the Commonwealth nations,” added Sir Tapley, as he engaged the students from the Dr. William Conor Primary School and the George Moody Stuart School in the audience by asking them questions about the history of the Queen’s Baton.

Sir Tapley welcomed the team from the Commonwealth and wished them well as they continue the journey.

“We are very happy to have you and we look forward to you seeing places of interest in our lovely country and to be able to relay to your fellow Commonwealth partners what St. Kitts and Nevis has to offer,” he said.

Sarah Osborne, Honorary Legal Advisor of the Commonwealth Games Federation, stated that “the Queen’s Baton Relay is a tradition of the Commonwealth Games, which are held every four years”.

The Queen’s baton started its 388 day journey at the Queen’s Palace on March 13, 2017 and will be traveling to each Commonwealth territory across the globe on its way to Australia where it will spend the last 100 days leading up to the Commonwealth Games. A message from Queen Elizabeth II was placed in the Baton and will be read at the opening ceremony of the Commonwealth Games on April 04, 2018.

The ceremony at Government House kicked off just one of many events that will take place on June 26, 2017, in St. Kitts and June 27, 2017, in Nevis.

The Queen’s Baton is made up of macadamia wood, which represents the past, a stainless steel centre representing the present, and reclaimed plastic from the gulf coast that represents the future. The Queen’s Baton also has a centre lit with LED lights, which has colours that represent golden beaches, oceans, rainforests, sunrise and sunset.

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