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Glen ‘crosses Africa’ on latest leg of Commonwealth Games baton epic journey

16 February 2022
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Royal Navy sailor Glen Clifton ‘crossed Africa’ as he carried the Queen’s Baton on the latest leg of its relay ahead of this summer’s Commonwealth Games.

More than 2,500 miles separate Malawi in eastern Africa from Ghana in the Gulf of Guinea – it’s a flight of several hours, a rail or road journey of several days.
Or just a few seconds on foot for Royal Navy senior rating Chief Petty Officer Glen Clifton

One minute he was in Malawi. The next Ghana.

Admittedly these were the pavilions representing the Commonwealth nations, two of 192 countries represented at Dubai’s Expo 2020 (delayed by the pandemic).

The 35-year-old supply chain specialist from Portsmouth, who serves with Naval Party 1023 based in the emirate, was one of 11 people selected to carry the baton for around 500 metres through the grounds of the international exhibition on the latest leg of its epic journey to mark ‘UK Day’ at the expo

Army, RN and RAF personnel serving in the region were among those picked to be ‘baton bearers’ as well as Olympians including gold-medal-winning javelin athlete Tessa Sanderson and the Duke of Cambridge, who ran the 11th and final leg.

To represent the Royal Navy on a global platform is a real honour for me and my family

Glen Clifton

“To represent the Royal Navy on a global platform is a real honour for me and my family,” said a proud Glen, who handed over the baton to Ed Clancy, a triple gold medal winner in cycling’s team pursuit at the Olympics.

“Being part of the relay team on the day that included HRH Prince William during the Queen’s Platinum jubilee year is a career highlight for me which will take some beating.”

The relay, which began last year, will take all 72 nations and overseas territories in the Commonwealth of nations as it travels 90,000 miles in the hands of more than 7,500 ‘baton bearers’.

It will spend its final 25 days on UK soil before being delivered to the games in Birmingham for the opening ceremony on July 28.

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