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Commonwealth Games 2014

Volume 517: debated on Monday 25 October 2010

Responsibility for staging Glasgow 2014 rests with the organising committee and its key partners including the Scottish Government, Glasgow city council and Commonwealth Games Scotland. I have already met my Scottish counterpart on two occasions, visited Scotland House during my trip to Delhi—the hon. Gentleman will be pleased to know that—and had initial meetings with the Glasgow 2014 team.

I rise with some trepidation as Glasgow is nowhere near Herefordshire. Notwithstanding that, however, will the Government be a bit clearer about the help they intend to provide over the coming years, in particular to Glasgow city council and the organising committee?

I can promise the hon. Gentleman that, given my name, I am very well aware that Herefordshire is nowhere near Scotland. I can also promise him that the Government have delivered on all the commitments they gave Glasgow 2014 as part of the bidding process and that we are examining ways in which we might help it further as the process moves forward.

The Minister will, of course, know that the BBC has pulled out of being the official broadcaster of the Glasgow games, which has the potential to cost the games millions of pounds in terms of the broadcasting infrastructure. Will he join me in making a case to the BBC about reconsidering that? When he does so, will he remind the BBC that it has obligations to the whole UK?

I will certainly do that. I just say to the hon. Gentleman that, as the right hon. Member for Dulwich and West Norwood (Tessa Jowell) will recall, a similar row occurred when the BBC did not secure the Paralympics rights for 2012 but, as things have worked out, I think that most people agree that the fact that those games will now be on a different broadcaster is to everybody’s benefit. This was not one of the issues raised with me in any of my meetings about the Commonwealth games in Delhi, but he has my word that if it becomes one, I will certainly take it up.