The Games

In the Beginning

The first Commonwealth Games took place in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada in 1930. Bobby Robinson, a key force within Athletics in Canada, implemented the event that had been talked about among Commonwealth nations for over 30 years. Eleven nations boasting 400 athletes in total participated in the first Games. The City of Hamilton provided $30,000 to these nations in order to help pay travel costs.




Australia's Betty Cuthbert achieved 16 world records and appeared in two Commonwealth Games in her incredible career



Since then the Games have been conducted every four years except for 1942 and 1946, when World War II intervened. Sixteen Games have been held in total, with three of these hosted by Australian cities - Sydney 1938, Perth 1962 and Brisbane 1982.

From 1930 to 1950 the Games were known as the British Empire Games, then the British Empire and Commonwealth Games until 1962. From 1966 to 1974 they took on the title of British Commonwealth Games and from 1978 onwards they have been known as simply the Commonwealth Games.

While other Games around the globe have been founded on geographic or climatic factors such as the Asian, Pan Am, African Games and Winter Olympics, the Commonwealth Games has been founded on history.

Unique characteristics of the Commonwealth Games include being the only Games that share a common language. All athletes and officials can converse with each other in English, creating an atmosphere that has led to the Commonwealth Games being long known as the "Friendly Games".

In an effort to keep the Games vibrant and relevant, the Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF) allowed Kuala Lumpur in 1998 to include team sports for the first time, a decision that proved an outstanding success.

Unlike other sporting occasions, the Commonwealth Games brings together nations from every corner of the world in a unique family spirit of shared history, common experiences, a unifying language, and links that transcend cultural barriers and physical borders.

The bonds of the Commonwealth Games help to encourage the pursuit of health and fitness in each of the member nations and provide an inspiration for youth to strive for excellence.

Every four years the nations of the Commonwealth gather to enjoy the friendship, entertainment and sporting performances that make the Commonwealth Games the most tangible mortar binding together this unique family of nations.

When and Where the Games Have Been Held

Year

City

Nation

Date

1930

Hamilton

Canada

16 - 23 August

1934

London

England

4 - 11 August

1938

Sydney

Australia

5 - 12 February

1950

Auckland

New Zealand

4 - 11 February

1954

Vancouver

Canada

30 July - 7 August

1958

Carfiff

Wales

18 - 26 July

1962

Perth

Australia

21 November - 1 December

1966

Kingston

Jamaica

4 - 13 August

1970

Edinburgh

Scotland

16 - 25 July

1974

Christchurch

New Zealand

24 January - 2 February

1978

Edmonton

Canada

3 - 12 August

1982

Brisbane

Australia

30 September

1986

Edinburgh

Scotland

24 July - 2 August

1990

Auckland

New Zealand

24 January - 3 February

1994

Victoria

Canada

18 - 28 August

1998

Kuala Lumpur

Malaysia

10 - 20 September

2002

Manchester

England

25 July - 4 August

2006