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Next Invictus Games set for 2016

Prince Harry's Invictus Games will next take place in the spring of 2016, it has been announced.

The competition's organising committee confirmed that the bidding process is now under way and interested parties from the 13 nations that took part in the first games, including the UK, have been invited to submit proposals to stage the event.

There will be no games in 2015 despite Harry previously expressing his hopes the competition would be held in the UK next year. He had suggested Glasgow, Sheffield and Manchester as possible venues and revealed America was a possible contender for 2016.

The Prince said today he was delighted that September's inaugural games for wounded servicemen and women were just the beginning.

"The Invictus Games was about inspiring people to overcome their challenges and raising awareness of the issues facing wounded servicemen and women on an international scale," Harry said.

"I believe we achieved that as the public support for the inaugural Invictus Games was nothing short of phenomenal, and the impact it had on the competitors was unforgettable.

"But for every competitor at the first Invictus Games, there are 10 others who would benefit from having the same opportunity.

"I always hoped September's Games would just be the beginning and I am delighted there is an appetite to build on the success of 2014 and broaden the concept in the future."

The event will not take place in 2015 to allow hosts time to plan and raise funds, but the second Invictus Games will be staged in 2016, followed by the third in the summer of 2017.

A spokeswoman for Invictus Games said: "We just wanted to give the new host a proper chance to prepare for the games."

Bids will be managed and overseen at first by a newly established Transition Committee led by Sir Keith Mills, chair of Invictus' organising committee.

The Transition Committee will hand over the process to a new organisation, which is being set up and which will own the Invictus Games brand and select the 2016 and 2017 hosts early next year.

Speaking in September during the games, Harry said: "We've now got America showing interest in 2016 and Canada showing interest in 2017, so the question is what do we do next year?

''I personally, along with a couple of other people on the board, would love to keep it in the UK, maybe head north, whether it be Glasgow, whether it be Sheffield, whether it be Manchester."

Dave Henson, captain of the British Armed Forces Team, welcomed the news the games would be held in 2016 and 2017.

"The games have been an incredible success and I can speak for many other wounded, injured and sick service-people when I say we are very keen to see them being held again," he said.

"The impact on all the competitors and their families has been unbelievable and I can't overstate how much it will mean for these games to happen again. I am absolutely delighted to hear that plans are under way to hold them in 2016 and 2017."


From Belfast Telegraph