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1930 British Empire Games

The city of Hamilton proved a gracious first host of the Commonwealth Games. Then called the British Empire Games, the sociological, cultural and political make up of the Commonwealth movement has altered substantially since 1930.

The inaugural Games was utilitarian and very down to earth, proving that more doesn’t necessarily mean better. The athletes’ village was the Prince of Wales School next to the Civic Stadium, where the competitors slept two dozen to a classroom. Despite missing some basic comforts, the participants were unanimous in their praise for the Games and Hamilton’s hospitality.

Eleven countries sent a total of 400 athletes to the Hamilton Games. Women competed in only the swimming events. The participant nations were Australia, Bermuda, British Guyana, Canada, England, Northern Ireland, Newfoundland, New Zealand, Scotland, South Africa and Wales.

The Hamilton Games featured six sports: athletics, boxing, lawn bowls, rowing, swimming and diving and wrestling and ran at a cost of $97,973.00.

1930 British Empire Games