Commonwealth Games 2022 mascot: why Perry the patchwork bull was chosen - and how to get tickets for Birmingham Games
The Birmingham Games will take place across the West Midlands from 28 July to 8 August next year
The mascot for the Birmingham Commonwealth Games 2022 has been revealed, as the chief executive of the games described it as “everything I hoped our mascot would be.”
The games are scheduled to take place across the West Midlands from 28 July to 8 August next year, and will be the most expensive British sporting event since the 2012 London Olympics.
The mascot was designed by a schoolgirl, who won the competition for the most innovative design.
So, what will be the games’ mascot and what does it represent? This is what you need to know.
What is the Commonwealth Games 2022 mascot?
The mascot for the 2022 Commonwealth Games is a multicoloured bull named Perry.
The bull is covered in hexagons - each a different colour - and it has a bushy tail and fur around its hooves.
The cartoon animal is named after the Perry Barr area of Birmingham, where the Alexander Stadium will host athletics events as well as the opening and closing ceremonies.
Who designed Perry?
Perry was designed by 10-year-old Emma Lou from Bolton, Greater Manchester, who won a nationwide competition to design the mascot for the Games.
Emma Lou said "It feels as if I'm in a dream,” to have been chosen as the winner, as she met Perry when he paid a visit to her home.
"I chose a bull because of the Bullring in Birmingham, and I decided to use hexagons because they are the strongest shape and the whole world depends on each other,” she added.
"I am so excited that my design will be seen by so many people."
She added: "I think the mascot is great, he looks so cute. I am really excited to come to the Commonwealth Games and it will be amazing to see Perry in the Opening Ceremony."
What does the design represent?
The bull is not only related to the Bull-ring shopping centre in the centre of Birmingham, but also the market area known as the Bull Ring since the 16th century.
The mascot is dressed in white sportswear with a blue and yellow design and medal.
This represents the colours of the Birmingham flag, and the city’s iconic jewellery Quarter.
Birmingham was the largest producer of jewellery and precious metals for centuries and still produces around 40% of the country’s jewellery.
The colours represent the coming together of the Commonwealth, in Birmingham.
Chief Executive of Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games, Ian Reid, described Perry as "everything I hoped our mascot would be and more: bright, colourful, energetic and totally representative of modern Birmingham and the West Midlands.”
Reid continued: “Perry celebrates diversity, community and our region's heritage as well as its future.
"From today, Perry becomes a powerful icon for Birmingham 2022 all over the world, and you'll be seeing a lot more of him during the countdown to the Games."
Birmingham is one of the most ethnically diverse cities in the UK, and has the youngest population - with under 25s making up nearly 40 percent of the people who live in it.
In the 2011 census, around 42 per cent of people in Birmingham classified themselves as non-white British.
How will Perry be used?
Perry also becomes the first mascot at any multi-sport Games who will be brought to life through augmented reality, which will be superimposed onto Facebook and Instagram filters.
This will give tourists and people in Britain the chance to #PosewithPerry and share their own celebrations of the commonwealth games, on social media.
Perry will also be used on official merchandise, by Commonwealth Games organisers.
World famous Olympic champion and President of Commonwealth Games England, Denise Lewis OBE, says the mascot "represents the heritage of Birmingham and the West Midlands.”
She added: "We know there's an Olympic Games to get through first - a very different Olympics - but the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham, for a lot of people, will be the end of what has happened.
"It is a beacon of light, probably a symbolic sign of what we've come through.
"Perry is right up there with the fantastic mascots I’ve seen during my athletics career, and I can’t wait to see him entertaining the crowds during the Games next year.”
Where will the games be held?
The Birmingham Games will take place across the West Midlands from 28 July to 8 August 2022.
The opening and closing ceremonies will take place at the Alexander Stadium.
How do I get tickets?
Tickets will be on sale later in 2021, according to the official website for the 2022 Commonwealth Games.You can register your interest in purchasing tickets, on the website - which is the only place to buy official tickets.