The Commonwealth - a Family of Nations
This panel celebrates the historic 2018 Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting which brought together the leaders of the 53 sovereign nations of the Commonwealth family.
The creation of the modern Commonwealth dates from the London 'Declaration' issued from the Commonwealth Prime Ministers Conference in 1949.
In the brief declaration, the eight founding member nations set out the new, yet continuing basis on which they would join together in free association as independent nations and members of the Commonwealth.
In the closing words of the document the assembled leaders 'declare that they remain united as free and equal members of the Commonwealth of Nations, freely cooperating in the pursuit of peace, liberty and progress.'
As other nations have achieved independence, and attracted by the values and principles now expressed in the Commonwealth Charter, membership of the Commonwealth has continued to grow in scope and stature.
It has become a richly diverse community of 53 nations set in every continent and ocean. A third-of the people of the world live in Commonwealth countries and 60 per cent of them are under the age of 30.
Joined together by kinship and affinity, the people of the Commonwealth and the institutions
that serve them are connected and cooperate through an extensive array of organisations. They work together towards a common future that is fairer, more prosperous, more sustainable and more secure. Collective action by the governments of the Commonwealth make it an enduring influence for good in the world.
Nations of the Commonwealth enjoy the advantage of shared language, the Common Law and similar systems of government and administration. This makes it easier for them to communicate, trade and cooperate with one another. All members have an equal voice, regardless of size, and decisions are made by consensus.
Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II
Head of the Commonwealth
on 18 April 2018
during the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting
( right end of the marker )
The installation of this panel was coordinated through The Outdoor Trust, a charity working to create Commonwealth Walkways in the principal towns and cities of all Commonwealth nations and territories. They celebrate the lifelong and worldwide contribution of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II as Head of the Commonwealth.The aim is to inspire deeper understanding of Commonwealth identity, and active involvement in building connections and cooperation that promote prosperity, democracy and peace in accordance with the values and principles
of the Commonwealth Charter.The network of Commonwealth Walkways is inspired by the popularity of The Queen's Baton Relay and ongoing success of the Jubilee Walkway, established to commemorate Her Majesty's Silver Jubilee in 1977. It encircles the Centre of London embracing many historic buildings and views and is approximately 14 miles (23km) in length.To mark the 2018 Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting and 70th anniversary of the creation of the modern Commonwealth by the London Declaration of 1949, a Commonwealth extension has been added to the Jubilee Walkway. It runs along Pall Mall and the Strand linking the headquarters of the Commonwealth Secretariat in Marlborough House with the High Commissions of several Commonwealth countries.The Outdoor Trust is very grateful to the J P Marland Chartable Trust for their support in making this panel.