British ambassador extols the excellent relationship between the UK and Spain, both inside and outside the EU: We must “create our future together”
This is the British Ambassador’s last celebration of The Queen’s Birthday in Madrid, as his six years in Spain come to an end in August.
On Thursday 20 June, more than 700 people celebrated the strong links that unite the UK and Spain at The Queen’s Birthday Party, a party to celebrate the 93rd birthday of Queen Elizabeth II, who in 2019 also celebrates 67 years as sovereign.
The part ytook place in the British Ambassador’s official residence in Madrid under the banner of “Creating our future” and brought together personalities from the worlds of politics, business and society, such as the Minister of Science, Innovation and Universities, Pedro Duque; the Secretary of State for Tourism, Isabel Maria Oliver; the Congressional spokesperson for Ciudadanos, Inés Arrimadas; and the Vice-President of Banco Santander, Matías Rodríguez-Inciarte.
In his welcome address, HMA Simon Manley underlined the excellent ties between both countries and called for the continuation of this special relationship in the future.
“We have shared challenges such as climate change, the ageing population, Islamist terrorism and the digital revolution. Inside or outside the European Union we have to tackle them together,” emphasised the Ambassador.
Spain and the UK have trade flows of more than 62,000 million euros per year. More than 300,000 UK nationals live in Spain and nearly 200,000 Spaniards live, study and work in the UK. Academic ties and the collaboration between security forces in the fight against drug trafficking and terrorism are also very strong.
This was the last Queen’s Birthday Party in Madrid for Simon Manley who, in August, will hand over to the new Ambassador Hugh Elliott, who has been Director of Communication in the Government’s Department for Exiting the EU, and the Foreign & Commonwealth Office.
“I am grateful to the Spanish people for their collaboration and help, and I confess that this has been the best job of my life”, adds Manley.
Using the hashtag #QBPMadrid2019 on Twitter and Instagram you can see everything related to the party. The Embassy has just launched its official Instagram channel @ukinspain.
Sadly, due to so much ill health caused by the wretched ‘flu bug’ that is sweeping its way
across Britain, the UK and Europe, The Deadwood Stage Company” has had to postpone its
performances planned for February.
The production of Cinder Hella was due to be staged at The Madhouse in February and its
delay is a great disappointment to all concerned. However, watch this space for details of
“Cinder Hella” – which is not to be missed – coming later in the Spring.
The Company hopes that people are understanding of the situation and will continue to
support their productions.
Freedom of movement ‘will not continue as we know it’ post Brexit. The Prime Minister has
insisted that the free movement of people from the EU into Britain will end in 2019.
It contradicts suggestions from Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond that the current
rules in place could continue for a transitional period after the UK leaves the European
Richard Hammond said recently that there should be no ‘cliff edge’ for immigration when
Britain leaves the EU in 2019. He implied that current immigration rules should remain in
place during any transitional period after Brexit, which could last up to three years.
“At the present time, we have a high level of dependence on foreign workers in the UK.
“Nobody wants us to go over a cliff edge in March 2019 where suddenly our health services
are unable to cope, social care is unable to deliver,” he told the press.
Disagreements within the conservative party are sparking disapproval from opposing MPs.
“The government is in total disarray. Unless the cabinet can agree on a position how can it
possibly negotiate Brexit on behalf of Britain with the EU?” Tom Brake MP said.
The government has not specified what the arrangement will entail, although MPs have
brushed off the idea of a Norwegian-style arrangement.
Who can vote in the General Election on 8 June 2017?
Any British citizen who has reached the age of 18 can register as an overseas voter for up to 15 years after leaving the UK as long as he or she was registered to vote in the UK within the previous 15 years (or, if you were under the age of 18 when you left the UK, if a parent was registered to vote within that time).
Am I already registered to vote as an overseas voter?
An overseas registration lasts 12 months. You must renew your registration each year. If you are not registered to vote, you will need to register by 11.59pm on Monday 22 May in orderto vote in the UK general election on 8 June 2017. Register to vote online any time at gov.uk/register-to-vote. If you’re not sure whether you are registered to vote, check with your local Electoral Registration Office (see https://www.yourvotematters.co.uk/register-to-vote/find-your-local-authority).
How do I vote?
As an overseas voter, you can vote by proxy or by post.
By proxy: You appoint someone to vote on your behalf. We recommend voting by proxy rather than by post, because some postal votes might not reach you in time for you to complete and return them by 10pm on Thursday 8 June.
Your proxy will be sent a proxy polling card telling him or her where and when to vote. You must let your proxy know how you want them to vote on your behalf, for which candidate or party. If your proxy cannot get to the polling place,he or she can apply to vote for you by post. They can apply to do this up to 5pm, 11 working days before election day. Your Electoral Registration Office can give you more details about this.
By post: If you choose to vote by post, please make sure you have time to receive and return your ballot papers by 10 pm on Thursday 8 June. Ballot papers will be sent out from the 12th of May, but to check when your council will start dispatching postal voting packs, contact your local Electoral Registration Office (see above).
The forms for voting by proxy and by post can be downloaded from www.yourvotematters.co.uk.
Once you have completed and signed the appropriate form, return it to your Electoral Registration Office. Some offices accept scanned copies sent by e-mail, but please check first. Once your ballot papers arrive, you should complete and return them immediately to ensure that your vote counts!
Why should I vote?
Because your vote matters. This could be the most historic general election in our times – the future of the UK, your future, the future of your children, your grandchildren and future generations will be decided by the outcome of this election.
How do I choose who to vote for?
Your vote is your business, but we recommend that you choose the candidate who can best protect your rights as a UK citizen in Spain, irrespective of their political party. Tactical voting might be necessary in order to secure your future, so you might find yourself voting against your traditional party affiliation.
DON’T DELAY – GET YOUR VOTE TODAY!
For more information, see http://www.bremaininspain.com/general-election-8-june/