By Tom Degun

Eileen GallagherDecember 5 -  Glasgow 2014 have revealed that the Opening and Closing Ceremonies, Cultural Programme and Queen's Baton Relay for the Commonwealth Games will be delivered in one integrated programme under the guidance of a top television executive to promote Scotland to the world.

Recognising the importance of this programme, the Glasgow 2014 Board has tasked Eileen Gallagher (pictured) to chair a Ceremonies, Culture and Queen's Baton Relay Steering Group to ensure that the three major aspects of the project are delivered seamlessly.

"This is an outstanding opportunity to create a Cultural Programme and Opening and Closing ceremonies which will live long in the memory," said Gallagher, the co-founder of Shed Productions which has produced successful programmes such as Footballer's Wives, Bad Girls and Waterloo Road.

Gallagher, who was born and educated in Glasgow, is one of Scotland's most successful television executives.

Having joined Scottish Television in 1980 she rose to become head of broadcasting before moving to Granada TV as deputy director of droadcasting and London Weekend TV as managing director.

Gallagher set-up Shed Productions with three colleagues from Granada TV in 1998 and it has since established itself as one of Britain's most successful independent television companies, with its programmes winning a string of prestigious awards.

"In less than three years, all eyes will be on Glasgow and this is a unique opportunity for us to showcase the city and Scotland to both the Commonwealth and the world," said Glasgow 2014 chairman Lord Smith.

"In Eileen, we have the creative skills, vision and drive to oversee the creation of a breath-taking events that will not only generate excitement about Glasgow 2014 at home and abroad, but will ensure a memorable experience of the Games and Scotland."

Celtic Park_in_2014_Commonwealth_Games_mode
The Glasgow 2014 Opening Ceremony is due to take place July 23, 2014, at Celtic Park and is estimated to attract an international television audience of more than a billion while the Closing Ceremony at Hampden Park Stadium 11 days later is predicted to attract a similar number of spectators, it is claimed.

"While we will look to the world for the best creative talent, we will also be working with both local and national Government and other bodies from across Scotland to ensure the ceremonies are truly representative of all the talents this proud nation lays claim to," said Gallagher.

The 2014 Cultural Programme will aim to build on Scotland's reputation as a major hub for culture, collections, art and architecture while the Queen's Baton Relay will visit the 71 countries, nations and territories of the Commonwealth helping to showcase Scottish business and trade across the Commonwealth, officials revealed.

Glasgow Life, the city's umbrella organisation for culture, art, sport and events, will, through Glasgow City Council, work on the programme with the Organising Committee.

A global search for a creative team to work with Glasgow Life on the production of the Opening and Closing Ceremonies will be launched in the coming weeks.

"One of the great memories of the Delhi 2010 Commonwealth Games was the fantastic Handover Ceremony which showcased what Glasgow can do in front of a global audience," said Archie Graham, the Glasgow City Council executive member for the Commonwealth Games

"Following from that model, I'm sure Glasgow will deliver memorable Opening and Closing Ceremonies in 2014."

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