Queen Elizabeth II has claimed the Baton for the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games is providing a "beacon of hope" as it makes it journey around the world.
The impact of the Queen’s Baton Relay and prospect of the English city hosting the Games next year were highlighted during the Queen's Christmas message broadcast across the Commonwealth.
The Baton is visiting all 72 Commonwealth countries and territories, taking in Europe, Africa, Asia, Oceania, the Caribbean and the Americas over the course of 294 days.
It is taking place against the backdrop of the coronavirus pandemic as nations grapple with the contagious Omicron variant.
Birmingham is scheduled to stage the Commonwealth Games from July 28 to August 8 next year.
"Next summer, we look forward to the Commonwealth Games," said Queen Elizabeth II.
"The Baton is currently travelling the length and breadth of the Commonwealth, heading towards Birmingham, a beacon of hope on its journey.
"It will be a chance to celebrate the achievements of athletes and the coming-together of like-minded nations."
As is tradition, Queen Elizabeth II has placed a message inside the baton which will be read out at the Birmingham 2022 Opening Ceremony.
Buckingham Palace in London witnessed the launch of the Queen's Baton Relay on October 7 before it spends two to four days in each country and territory it visits.
More than 7,500 Batonbearers will be trusted to carry the Baton which will travel approximately 90,000 miles.
The Baton spent Christmas in the Seychelles and is expected to arrive in Pakistan today before heading to the Maldives for the New Year.
A platinum strand spans the length of the Baton, in recognition of Queen Elizabeth II's platinum jubilee year, which marks the 70th anniversary of her accession to the throne in 1952.