JUNE 2001- Contents
Travel & Adventure
the-south-asian.com June 2001
Manchester - Gearing up
- for the Commonwealth Games 2002!
The Games will be the biggest ever – 17 sports are expected to draw 5250 athletes and sports officials from 72 national associations and approximately 1 million spectators. From July 25 to August 4, the streets of Manchester will also come alive with music, street theatre, and street parties . Preparations for the festivities, involving local communities, are well under way.
The XVII Commonwealth Games, and the first of this millennium, will take place in the summer of 2002 in Manchester (UK) – a city steeped in tradition of tolerance, amity, and cultural sophistication. Manchester’s transition from a humble industrial city to being the second city of Britain is a tribute to its people who built the city and enriched it with their hard work and integrity. Devoid of the usual urban pretensions, Manchester is an architectural marvel, a living catalogue of architectural history spanning centuries, and refreshingly innovative in the adaptive use of its old buildings. Prosperity has not tainted Mancunians, as the people of Manchester are known - they are still not a part of the disposable, designer culture. Old Trafford is still the Mecca for cricket and football. Lancashire County Cricket Club, Manchester United and Manchester City are the sporting trinity of Manchester. Theatre, music, and arts abound and so do different cuisine. One is almost spoilt for choice – with Chinese, Japanese, Italian, Middle Eastern fare and an entire ‘Curry Mile’. With so much to offer, the choice of Manchester as the host city for the next Commonwealth Games does not come as a surprise.
The Games will be the biggest ever – 17 sports are expected to draw 5250 athletes and sports officials from 72 national associations and approximately 1 million spectators. From July 25 to August 4, the streets of Manchester will also come alive with music, street theatre, street parties and art exhibits. Preparations for the festivities, involving local communities, are well under way. In fact the Spirit of Friendship Festival will run from 11 March 2002 to 10 August 2002, coinciding with the Queen’s Golden Jubilee and culminating with the 40th anniversary of Jamaica’s Independence.
For the first time in the history of world sports, women are heading the planning and organisation of the Games – Frances Done is the CEO, Joanna Hartley the National Festival Director, and Jane Price the Manager of Media and Communications.
The venue for opening and closing ceremonies will be the $135 million City of Manchester Stadium – a part of the new Sportcity. Still under construction, the stadium will seat 38,000 people – and will be home to Manchester City Football Club in the year 2003. Sportcity will also have an Indoor Tennis Centre, The National Squash Centre, Outdoor athletics track, Indoor athletics facility, Sports Hall for netball and badminton, and Sports Science and Medicine facilities.
Manchester has had important links with south Asian countries – in the form of trade, and migrant communities settling down here to work in the textile factories. The Manchester Regiment was also stationed in India in the 1800s and then again in 1911 when it became part of the Jullundur Brigade – a bond that continues to be valued and nurtured. The Frontier Force of Pakistan, the Sikh Regiment of India and the Manchester Regiment are the Jullundur Brigade ‘blood brothers’ that meet every 2 or 3 years to celebrate an almost 90 year old association.
The-south-asian.com will, in subsequent months, carry articles and features on the south Asian links with Manchester – the city that the world will soon have its eyes on.
|Copyright © 2000 [the-south-asian.com]. Intellectual Property. All rights reserved.|