Liverpool has launched a bid to host the 2022 Commonwealth Games after the government called on UK cities to formulate plans for how to stage the event after it emerged in March that Durban in South Africa could not afford to hold them.
In 2014, Glasgow hosted the event at a cost of around £550m and the Liverpool mayor Joe Anderson said two weeks ago that he expected the 2022 version to cost more. However he felt the boost to the local economy – around £52m in Glasgow – would make it worthwhile. The city’s bid team said on Twitter that they would “be unveiling a bold, innovative vision for the Games in the vibrant, welcoming city of Liverpool.”
The culture secretary Karen Bradley has urged British cities to investigate whether they can benefit from international trade, investment and tourism opportunities as a result of the staging of the event. Birmingham, London and Manchester are also considering bids.
“Hosting the Commonwealth Games in 2022 could give us an opportunity to step up and show the very best of Global Britain as an outward-looking nation that is confident on the world stage. So it’s only right that we look into the potential for hosting one of the world’s biggest sporting events on home soil,” she said. “Britain has a wealth of expertise in staging major sports events, inspiring people to get involved in sport and helping to grow our economy. The British people embrace these events and always give a warm welcome to the world. I would urge cities to consider if they have the desire and capability to stage the Games in 2022 as they could bring benefits not just to their city but across the country.”
The sports minister Tracey Crouch added: “The London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games and Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games showed the appetite and enthusiasm that the British people have for supporting major sporting events. Now that the Commonwealth Games Federation need to find a new host for 2022, we want to hear from cities interested in repeating the triumphs of London, Glasgow and Manchester before it in 2002. We will then weigh up whether the UK should step in to host, looking at the opportunities to promote Global Britain and deliver a lasting legacy at good value for taxpayers.”
The government will consider multi-city proposals, as well as applications from individual cities which will be assessed to ensure they offer value for money. The process will end later in the year when the government will decide if the UK will put forward a formal bid.
Sydney, Melbourne, Toronto and Kuala Lumpur are among the other cities believed to be considering a bid to stage the event. The Commonwealth Games Federation is due to decide where the 2022 Games will be staged later this year.