The 1938 British Empire Games was the third British Empire Games. Held in Sydney, New South Wales, Australia from 5–12 February 1938, they were timed to coincide with Sydney's 150 year anniversary since the foundation of British settlement in Australia. Venues included the Sydney Cricket Ground (the main stadium), the Sydney Sports Ground, North Sydney Olympic Pool and Henson Park. An estimated 40,000 people attended the opening ceremony at the famed Sydney Cricket Ground. A competitors' residential village was established within the grounds of the Sydney Showground.
Fifteen nations participated down under at the Sydney Games involving a total of 464 athletes and 43 officials. New participants included Fiji and Ceylon. Seven sports were featured – Athletics, Boxing, Cycling, Lawn Bowls, Rowing, Swimming, Diving and Wrestling.
The star of the games was the Australian athlete Decima Norman, who won five gold medals in track and field. Margaret Dovey, the future wife of Australian prime minister Gough Whitlam, finished sixth in the 220 yards breaststroke. Due to the onset of World War II, the games were not held again until 1950.