10th September 1987
Guernsey hosted the second Island Games

At the end of the first Island Games, host island Isle of Man handed the baton to Guernsey. Thus, in September 1987, Guernsey welcomed 1049 athletes from 18 different islands to its shores.

The athletes competed in nine events: athletics, archery, badminton, bowling, cycling, shooting, swimming, table tennis and volleyball. The main venue, on which the event was focused, was Footes Lane.

Guernsey itself won 17 gold, 19 silver and 28 bronze medals, which put it third overall in the medals table. The Isle of Man and Jersey came first and second.

Securing funding

The States of Guernsey provided a grant of £25,000 to the organising committee to help with funding. The various sports facilities that hosted the individual competitions also did so at no fee.

The total cost of the games was £32,000. However, estimates put the value of the free facilities and services provided at a further £15,000, for a total budget of £47,000.

However, even this was not enough to quite match the facilities offered at the Isle of Man Games two years earlier. It had also been able to host all of the competitors at its own expense; for the second Games, Guernsey made it clear that attendance would require the competitors – or their home nations – to pay for their board and lodging themselves.

The Games

The event was opened by Queen Elizabeth II at Footes Lane at 2.30pm on 10 September. After just over two weeks of friendly competition, it closed on 17 September in a ceremony at Beau Sejour. Guernsey handed responsibility for hosting the next Games, which would take place in 1989, to Torshavn, capital of the Faroe Islands.

Guernsey hosted the Island Games for a second time in 2003 and was selected to host for a third time in 2021. The Games are held every two years and are overseen by the International Island Games Association. The Association is based in Douglas in the Isle of Man.

Category: Guernsey History | Other events tagged

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