Prime Minister hears of ‘Peaky Blinders’ part in Birmingham Commonwealth Games
Boris Johnson was on a visit to the Alexander Stadium in Birmingham to see the finishing touches being put on the venue, which is set to host the opening ceremony at the end of July.
The city has benefited from a £778 million Government funding package to help stage the Games.
Mr Johnson chatted with several of the 14,000 volunteers for the Games, asking them “is this the uniform?”, before being told they were expecting new orange and grey attire.
The volunteers said that among items being supplied were an orange gilet and a man-bag, along with a specially-designed cap which was “an ode” to the stars of television series Peaky Blinders.
Although named for a real Birmingham gang, the BBC drama series starring Cillian Murphy has followed the fictional exploits of the Shelby family.
The main characters are well known for their flat caps – with the Prime Minister seemingly familiar with the programme.
Hearing the name, Mr Johnson said: “Peaky Blinders, yes.”
Shaking hands with volunteers and some of the many Batonbearers who will be carrying the Queen’s Relay baton ahead of the games, he told them: “You are going to have such fun.
“Only 77 days to go? Very exciting.”
He asked one of the female baton relay carriers: “What if somebody tries to nick the baton?”, with another volunteer replying “she’s really quick”.
After touring the “incredible” stadium with Culture Secretary Nadine Dorries, and meeting Games’ mascot Perry the Bull, Mr Johnson said the investment in the games would “drive growth and prosperity for the long term” in the region.
Later asked by reporters whether he was looking forward to any particular sporting event at the showcase, later this summer, Mr Johnson replied: “I like the sound of this lawn bowls, which is about my level these days.
“The globe is going to be tuned in to lawn bowls in Leamington Spa. Isn’t that going to be fantastic?”