Express & Star

Star comment: Birmingham mustn't be last hurrah for Commonwealth Games

Birmingham proved that the Commonwealth Games can be delivered on in time, on budget and for the benefit of a wider community.

Alexandra Stadium during the Commonwealth Games

The baton relay engaged our whole region, including Shropshire and Staffordshire, and the events were spread across the region. The event put the West Midlands well and truly on the map and brought a much-needed buzz, just when we needed it post-Covid.

Now plans to hold it in the Australian state of Victoria have fallen apart over cost. It has failed to find the funding it needs to put on the event, which is now facing a huge crisis.

The Games scheduled for 2026 appear to be doomed and the event faces an existential crisis as other nations face the reality of a cost of living crisis and wonder whether such an event is affordable.

Victoria’s decision may well signal the beginning of the end. The Commonwealth Games as we know them may prove to have run their last race in the West Midlands.