Thousands gather in Guernsey as 2023 Island Games get underway

  • Watch the highlights from the 2023 Island Games opening ceremony

Thousands of people turned out at Guernsey's North Beach as the 2023 NatWest International Island Games got underway.

Originally, Guernsey was due to host the Island Games in 2021 - but the competition was delayed by two years during the Covid-19 pandemic.

At the last games - which Gibraltar hosted in 2019 - Jersey topped the medals table, followed by the Isle of Man and the Faroe Isles.

The opening ceremony officially began at 5pm, with live bands who got the crowds up on their feet.

Entertainment was followed by speeches from organisers and the swearing of oaths to mark the start of the tournament.

The traditional water ceremony came next, with all the competing nations mixing water from their island together to symbolise collective participation in the Games.

  • Keilan Webster reports from the opening ceremony at North Beach, St Peter Port.

Then Guernsey led the way in the parade, which took the athletes from North Beach to Albert Pier.

Teams from 24 island nations have come together to compete in 205 different sporting events.

Over the course of the next week, 522 gold, 522 silver and 584 bronze medals will be given out.

The tournament gets underway tomorrow (9 July) and action continues until Friday (14 July).

The Island Games opening ceremony in pictures:

Big smiles on the faces of Jersey's athletes. Credit: ITV Channel
Team Menorca wear their flags with pride. Credit: ITV Channel
Team Jersey had their own four-legged mascot. Credit: ITV Channel
The Scottish flag was on display at the ceremony. Credit: ITV Channel
The oldest and youngest competitors: Paul Richardson, 84, is competing for Alderney, whilst Giuseppe Borg, 13, is representing Gozo. Credit: ITV Channel
A band provides musical entertainment at the beginning of the ceremony. Credit: ITV Channel
ITV Channel's Kate Prout introduces our very own Oscar Puffin to the Island Games mascot - Jet the Puffin. Credit: ITV Channel

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