British Prime Minister Boris Johnson made an unexpected visit to the Alexander Stadium ©Getty Images

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson visited the Alexander Stadium in Birmingham as he announced that £6.5 million ($8 million/€7.7 million) will be invested into national governing bodies prior to this year’s Commonwealth Games.

Johnson made an unexpected visit to the revamped venue which is set to host the Opening and Closing Ceremony as well as track and field competitions during the Games.

He was joined by Culture Secretary Nadine Dorries as they were given a tour of the Alexander Stadium in Perry Barr and met Birmingham 2022 officials and triple Olympic medallist Kelly Sotherton.

According to the Birmingham Mail, Johnson described the Alexander Stadium - which has undergone a £72 million ($90 million/€83million) renovation - as a "global venue" and claimed the "world will be 

tuned into the West Midlands" when Birmingham stages the Commonwealth Games.

Johnson also expressed his hope of seeing Queen Elizabeth II in attendance at Birmingham 2022.

"I very much hope so," said Johnson.

"We'll have to see and wait how well we get on with that.

"She parachuted into the London Olympics, so I'll rule nothing out."

Johnson’s appearance in Birmingham came on the day when Sport England confirmed that £6.5 million of National Lottery funding will be split between 21 national governing bodies involved in the Games.

The money is part of Sport England’s £35 million ($43 million/€41 million) commitment to creating a lasting national impact from Birmingham 2022.

Each governing body of a Commonwealth Games sport is set to receive up to £500,000 ($613,000/€589,000) with the aim of developing accessible opportunities to engage with "disadvantaged communities".

"To deliver long-term community impact from the Commonwealth Games, we have to listen to what people need, try out new and different ideas, and support our partners who know what works at a grassroots level for their community," said Sport England chief executive Tim Hollingsworth.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, left and Culture Secretary Nadine Dorries, right, with Birmingham 2022 chief creative officer Martin Green ©Getty Images
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, left and Culture Secretary Nadine Dorries, right, with Birmingham 2022 chief creative officer Martin Green ©Getty Images

"Lasting impact depends on the creation of long-term, inclusive and local opportunities for people to get active, and tackling the inequalities that make it harder for some groups to take part in sport and activity.

"Today’s funding is an opportunity for us to work innovatively with sports to build a national activity legacy, targeting the people and areas who need the most support to get active."

A recent survey carried out by Sport England showed that affluence and activity levels are closely linked.

It found that 52.3 per cent of the least affluent people met the Government’s recommendation of 150 minutes of activity a week, compared to 71.2 per cent for the most affluent.

"This summer, I want communities up and down the country to get excited about the Commonwealth Games by getting active," added Johnson.

"From swimming, to boxing and basketball, this funding from Sport England will help do just that - by breaking down barriers and levelling up opportunities for young people to get involved in sport, no matter where they live."

Birmingham is scheduled to stage the Commonwealth Games from July 28 to August 8.