Venue Assistance Force at Commonwealth Games Birmingham DATE UNKNOWN CREDIT MOD.jpg
Members of the Venue Assistant Force (VAF) pictured ahead of the Commonwealth Games 2022 (Picture: MOD).
Tri-Service

Commonwealth Games: 1,000 personnel represent Armed Forces

Armed Forces personnel will be part of the 2022 Commonwealth Games in a number of roles.

Venue Assistance Force at Commonwealth Games Birmingham DATE UNKNOWN CREDIT MOD.jpg
Members of the Venue Assistant Force (VAF) pictured ahead of the Commonwealth Games 2022 (Picture: MOD).

Around 1,000 Armed Forces personnel will be a part of this year's Commonwealth Games.

They will take on a variety of roles, from competing for medals and officiating at competitions, to supporting security and taking part in the opening ceremony.

Hundreds of service personnel will deploy to Birmingham to support the West Midlands Police Security Operation.

The commander of the military deployment, Brigadier Matt Pierson, said he is "delighted" to be leading the Forces' contribution to the Games.

"We will play a small but important role in this fantastic sporting event, supporting West Midlands Police and Birmingham 2022," Brigadier Pierson said.

This year's Commonwealth Games will begin on Thursday 28 July, when an opening ceremony will see the Band of the Royal Marines provide a fanfare of trumpets.

"Alongside our elite athletes in Birmingham will be hundreds of their Armed Forces colleagues, deployed to help ensure the Games run as smoothly and securely as possible," Armed Forces Minister James Heappey said.

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More than 130 Armed Forces flag raisers will be deployed across the Commonwealth Games venues to lead nearly 300 medal presentations.

Athletes from all three services will be competing at this year's Games.

"I'm proud to represent not only Team England but also the Royal Air Force (RAF) and the Armed Forces," Air Specialist (Class 1) Luke Pollard, who is competing as a paratriathlete guide, said.

"I do feel a sense of pride at representing my service. I'd love to be able to showcase what the RAF has to offer and how much they value sport," he added.

A Venue Assistant Force (VAF) has deployed to Birmingham to support local authorities.

The VAF is made up of regular and reserve personnel and it will work across venues for the duration of the games.