UK Athletics has today confirmed it has officially submitted a joint bid with Birmingham City Council to host the European Athletics Championships at Birmingham’s Alexander Stadium in 2026.
Working in partnership with Birmingham City Council, UKA hopes to host Europe’s most prestigious European athletics competition, seven years on from hosting the hugely successful European Athletics Indoor Championships in Glasgow in 2019.
Whilst the UK has also proudly hosted multiple Major Championships over the last 15 years including the Olympic and Paralympic Games, the World Athletics and World Para Athletics Championships as well as the World Athletics Indoor Championships, it has never hosted the European Athletics Championships.
UKA’s Cherry Alexander, Vice President of European Athletics said, “I’m delighted that we have been able to submit a bid to host this hugely prestigious championship for European Athletics. It has long been a wish of mine and many colleagues to bring the ‘Euros’ to the UK so we can give athletes across the continent an amazing platform upon which to compete and perform.“We’ve been very fortunate to win the right to stage a number of major events in recent years, and with that in mind, we’d find it a huge honour for European Athletics to entrust us with its most important competition.
“We are blessed in the UK to work with many valued and important City partners and we have committed to working with all of them towards their major championship ambitions. On this occasion, Birmingham has stepped up and we would love another chance for UK fans to welcome the best in the world.”
UKA Chair Ian Beattie, said, “We’re very pleased to be able to confirm this official bid for the 2026 European Athletics Championships. I am grateful to Birmingham City Council for their commitment to hosting the championships, recognising the opportunity to further develop the legacy of the Commonwealth Games. It is also great news for the UK as a whole, highlighting our strong vision of hosting major sporting events in different parts of the country.”
Cllr Ian Ward, Leader of Birmingham City Council, added, “We have a first-class record for hosting international sporting events in Birmingham and the positive impact they have for our people and businesses is very clear. They strengthen the city’s identity, attract new visitors, grow our economy and promote Birmingham nationally and internationally as a welcoming, diverse, youthful and inclusive city.
“That’s why we published a new Major Sporting Events Strategy last year, to ensure we develop a portfolio of future events, which capitalises on the springboard of our hosting of the Commonwealth Games in a way that maximises the benefit for the people of the city as far as possible. Major events motivate local people, encouraging greater participation in sport and culture, helping improve physical and mental health and wellbeing.
“The redeveloped Alexander Stadium, recent host to the Diamond League and already hailed as the best athletics stadium in the UK, underlines our compelling credentials as a perfect host for European Championships in 2026 – we have excellent facilities, in a city and wider region that loves sport, which also has a bold plan for a sustainable legacy from all events that it stages. We feel the time is right for Birmingham to become the first UK host of these fantastic championships.”