From the medal winning performances of Welsh athletes around the globe, to Wales’ growing stature as a host of major events, UK Government Ministers will today (19 Jan) host a reception to celebrate Welsh sporting success, both on and off the pitch.
Athletes and representatives from sports bodies and local authorities across Wales will join the Secretary of State for Wales Stephen Crabb, Sports Minister Tracey Crouch and Wales Office Minister Alun Cairns at the event at Gwydyr House in London.
Guests will reflect upon Welsh successes in competitions over the past 12 months which have seen Cardiff awarded the 2017 UEFA Champions League Final, host its second Ashes Test Match and eight Rugby World Cup showdowns.
With the Euro 2016 and the Rio Olympic and Paralympic Games countdown underway, Welsh athletes will be looking ahead to an exciting year of sport in 2016.
Ministers will also continue to work with UK Sport and the Welsh Government to identify and secure top-class global sporting events. This will further cement Wales’ credentials as a sporting destination and provide a positive boost to the Welsh economy.
Wales Office Minister Alun Cairns said:
The achievements of sport in Wales are something that our nation holds with great pride. We can all remember the incredible success of the Ryder Cup in Newport in 2010 and the hosting of eight Rugby World Cup matches in Cardiff last year. They both left a legacy that the whole country can be proud of.
With Wales riding on a wave of sporting success, there surely is no better time to identify how we can attract more global sporting occasions to our shores. Occasions like the Commonwealth Games.
The opportunities to host such events in Wales should know no bounds. Not only can they pump millions of pounds into our economy and create thousands of jobs, but they can leave a lasting legacy and inspire youngsters from every corner of Wales to get hooked on sport.
I very much hope to see a bid from a city in Wales to host the Commonwealth Games in the future. I am determined that as a Government, we continue to work with partners in Wales to champion Welsh sport, and Wales as a first class destination for major sporting events.
Minister for Sport Tracey Crouch said:
When it comes to hosting major sporting events, Wales has a proven track record with recent successes including Ashes Tests, the UEFA Super Cup and games during the Rugby League and Rugby Union World Cups.
I look forward to supporting the Wales office in future bids for sporting events in Wales that will further establish the country as a leading destination for sport and provide a platform to showcase the talents of its native athletes and sport stars from around the world.
Notes to editors
Recent achievements of the Welsh sports sector include:
- UEFA Champions League final to be hosted in Cardiff’s Millennium Stadium (named Principality Stadium from 22 January 2016) in 2017.
- Wales’ national football team qualifies for the Euro 2016 Championships
- Cardiff’s SWALEC stadium hosted an Ashes Test Match for the first time in 2015
- Team Wales secured a record-breaking medal haul of 36 at the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games
- The Millennium Stadium hosted eight Rugby World Cup 2015 matches