Explainer

Every date and location of the Birmingham 2022 Queen's Baton Relay across England

By ITV News Central Production Journalist Nick Reid

Excitement continues to build as the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games draw ever closer.

Thousands of spectators and athletes will be descending on Birmingham and the West Midlands for the global multi-sport event when it begins on July 28.

Before that the Queen's Baton Relay, which has already covered thousands of miles travelling across the Commonwealth, will be making its way through England for the last leg of its tour.

The route of the 2,500-mile final leg of the relay has now been unveiled and will start with a five-day tour of London coinciding with the Platinum Jubilee.

The journey will be taking in 180 towns, cities and villages up and down England and eventually reaching the West Midlands, signalling the symbolic start of the final countdown to the sporting contest’s beginning.

Here at ITV News, we have pulled together a full schedule of where and when the baton relay will be taking place on each step of its journey around England.

Scroll down below to see when it will be coming to a town or city near you:

Where and when I can watch the Queen's Baton Relay near me?

  • London

A view of the City of London skyline Credit: PA

The Queen's Baton Relay will begin its England leg of the tour between Thursday, June 2 to Monday June 6.

It will then be taken to the Falkland Islands in the South Atlantic, before going to the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man, and then tours of Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales.

Returning to England on July 4, there will be a 25-day tour of the nation signalling the last stage of its global travel programme.

  • South West

The Eden Project in St Austell.

The baton's next stop will be in the South West of England from Monday, July 5 and Tuesday 6.

It will take in the Eden Project, in St Austell on July 4, as well as sunrise at Stonehenge and the Roman Baths, in Bath on July 5.

Monday, July 4: St Austell, Plymouth, Exeter, Portland & Weymouth, Poole, and Bournemouth

Tuesday, July 5: Devizes, Bath, Bristol, Easter Compton, Hereford, Gloucester, and Cheltenham.

  • South East

Canterbury Cathedral Credit: PA

The relay will the travel on to the South West between Wednesday, July 6 and Thursday 7.

This time the highlights include Canterbury Cathedral and Windsor.

Wednesday, July 6: Stoke Mandeville, Maidenhead, Eton & Windsor, Aldershot, Winchester, Hambledon, Southampton, and Portsmouth.

Thursday, July 7: Guildford, Tonbridge, Canterbury taking in the Cathedral, Folkestone, Deal, and the White Cliffs of Dover

  • East of England

Next up is the East of England and the baton will go on the water at Lee Valley White Water Centre, Waltham Cross, the Venetian waterways, Great Yarmouth and Cambridge Pride.

Friday, July 8: Gravesend, Tilbury, Basildon, Southend-on-Sea, Maldon, Waltham Cross, Luton and Hemel Hempstead.

Saturday, July 9: King's Lynn, Great Yarmouth, Bury St Edmunds, Hinxton, and Cambridge

  • East Midlands

Caves under Nottingham Castle Credit: PA

As we edge closer to the games, so does the baton to its final destination - stopping off here between Sunday, July 10 and Monday 11.

The baton will make its way through the caves under Nottingham Castle on July 10 as well as Loughborough University and Altitude44 High Ropes, Skegness on July 11.

Sunday, July 10: Northampton, Corby, Rutland, Leicester, Nottingham, Lincoln.

Monday, July 11: Skegness, Boston, Grantham, Loughborough, Derby, Bakewell, Matlock, and Buxton

Yorkshire and The Humber

The Deep Aquarium Hull Credit: PA Images

The baton the makes its way through "God's Own Country" with a busy schedule of visits between Tuesday, July 12 and Wednesday 13.

There will be visits to the English Institute of Sport, in Sheffield on July 12, before going underwater in a shark tank at The Deep, in Hull as well as a walk to the historic York Walls, both on July 13.

Tuesday 12 July: Sheffield, Rotherham, Huddersfield, Bradford, and Leeds.

Wednesday 13 July: Hull, Beverley, Market Weighton, York, Malton, Scarborough, Robin Hood’s Bay, and Whitby.

North East

Angel of the North Credit: Pete Rossiter

The relay then continues its march upwards, heading to the North East between Thursday July 14 and Friday 15.

It will travelling by speedboat in Stockton on Tees on July 14, before abseiling from a wind turbine in the Port of Blyth and visiting the Angel of the North, Gateshead both on July 15.

Thursday, July 14: Saltburn-by-the-Sea, Redcar, Middlesbrough, Stockton-on-Tees, Darlington, Durham, Seaham, and Sunderland

Friday, July 15: South Shields, Whitley Bay, Blyth, Alnwick, Gateshead, and Newcastle-upon-Tyne

North West

Blackpool Tower Ballroom, as an engineer polishes the dance floor. Credit: Martin Rickett/PA Wire

Up next is the North West between Saturday, July 16 and Sunday 17 - and it will be making all the headlines...

First a trip to Blackpool Tower Ballroom on July 16 is on the cards.

Then this will be followed on July 17 with a visit to Media City, in Salford and Bellevue Sports Village, in Manchester - a nod to the last time England hosted the games in 2002.

Saturday, July 16: Carlisle, Lake District, Blackpool, Preston, Blackburn, Darwen, and Bolton.

Sunday, July 17: Salford, Manchester, Stockport, Northwich, Wigan, and Knowsley.

West Midlands

Birmingham city centre

With days remaining before the games begin, the baton will make its way into the West Midlands in preparation for the opening ceremony.

The baton will arrive on Monday, July 18, from Liverpool taking in Newcastle-under-Lyme, Kidsgrove, Stoke-on-Trent, and Shrewsbury.

From there it will travel by coracle on the River Severn, on July 19, do wakeboarding at Chasewater, on July 20.

Other highlights include it being taken to the Black Country Living Museum, in Dudley on July 24 and abseiling from Galton Bridge, in Smethwick on July 25.

Here is the full schedule for the West Midlands in the build up to the opening ceremony.

Birmingham 2022 mascot, Perry

Monday, July 18 – Liverpool, Keele, Newcastle-under-Lyme, Kidsgrove, Stoke-on-Trent, and Shrewsbury

Tuesday, July 19 – Ironbridge, Telford, Newport, Lilleshall, Stafford, Stone, Rudyard, and Leek

Wednesday, July 20 – Uttoxeter, Burton upon Trent, Lichfield, Burntwood, Chasewater, and Tamworth - including the National Memorial Arboretum.

The National Memorial Arboretum

Thursday, July 21 - Bodymoor Heath, Atherstone, Market Bosworth, Nuneaton, Bedworth, Rugby, and Coventry

Friday, July 22 – Kenilworth, Whitnash, Warwick, Gaydon, Stratford-upon-Avon, Broadway, Pershore, Upton-upon-Severn, Malvern, and Worcester

Saturday, July 23 – Redditch, Bromsgrove, Kidderminster, Bridgnorth, Codsall, Rugeley, Hednesford, Cannock, and Walsall

Sunday, July 24 – Wolverhampton, Halesowen, Stourbridge, Dudley, Brierley Hill

Monday, July 25 – Oldbury, Wednesbury, Tipton, Cradley Heath, Rowley Regis, Blackheath, Bearwood, Smethwick, and West Bromwich

Tuesday, July 26- Castle Bromwich, Fordbridge, Chelmsley Wood, Marston Green, Hampton in Arden, Meriden, Berkswell, Balsall Common, Knowle, Dorridge, Cheswick Green, Hockley Heath, Dickens Heath, Shirley, and Solihull

Wednesday July 27 and Thursday 28 - Birmingham - the full route through the host citywill be announced in due course.

The Baton

The baton contains a message from the Queen to be read aloud at the Games’ opening ceremony.

It will have taken 294 days and trips to each of the 72 nations that make up the Commonwealth by the time the final mile has been completed at the end of July.

Thousands of Batonbearers will be taking turns along the journey – between 40 and 130 each day of the route – through England.

Birmingham 2022 is hosting the 16th official Queen’s Baton Relay.

In England, the Queen’s Baton Relay will provide the opportunity for communities to experience the buzz and excitement for Birmingham 2022, as the 11 days of show-stopping sport nears ever closer.

Phil Batty, director of ceremonies, culture and Queen’s Baton Relay, said a lot of work had gone into planning the route, adding it "symbolises connecting people from every corner of the Commonwealth, celebrates Batonbearers who take on challenges and marks the countdown to the biggest sporting event in the West Midlands’ history".

He added: "We hope communities across the country join the excitement, attend events near them, line the streets to cheer on our incredible Batonbearers and celebrate the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games."