Commonwealth Week Highlights

As Commonwealth week draws to a close, here are some of our highlights:

1) We celebrated Commonwealth Day by publishing a Buzzfeed post promoting some of the things we love about the Commonwealth. Read our 10 reasons the Commonwealth is Awesome here.

2) Ralph Buckle, our Director and Co-founder, also wrote a piece for ConservativeHome (one of the UK's leading political blogs). He argued that, as the Commonwealth approaches 65, it's time for it to be refreshed not retired. Read it here.

3)Tim Hewish, our Executive Director and Co-founder, attended the Commonwealth Day Reception 2014 at Marlborough House. At the event he had the opportunity to explain CX's aims and activities to Her Majesty The Queen. He also had a productive discussion with the Commonwealth Secretary General, His Excellency Mr Kamalesh Sharma.

 Photos by Richard Lewis & Stefan Kneba

Photos by Richard Lewis & Stefan Kneba

4) Her Majesty The Queen released her Commonwealth message. She said that "Affinities of history and inheritance from the past are strong, yet we are bound together by a sense that the Commonwealth is a powerful influence of good for the future. People of all ages from different cultures are weaving an ever-growing network of links which connect us in our diversity and our common purpose." The full message is here.

5) The UK's Commonwealth Minister Hugo Swire wrote a piece for the Huffington Post on his vision for the Commonwealth. You can read it here.

6) On Thursday CX also attended a Parliamentary meeting with the Indian Cabinet Minister for External Affairs, Mr Salman Khurshid. He discussed opening up the market for Indian & UK lawyers to work together referencing the benefits of similar legal systems. Our Advisory Board member Lord Flight quizzed him on the commercial environment and trade. The Minister concluded by calling the partnership "The Unique Relationship" to mirror the UK and the USA's "Special Relationship."

7) MP's discussed the Commonwealth in a Westminster Hall debate. You can read our highlights here and the full text of the debate here. Our Advisory Board Member Andrew Rosindell MP's comments on the absence of the Commonwealth flags from Parliament Square this year are particularly worth reading.

8) In spite of the lack of flags flying in Parliament Square, they were flying on Horse Guards Road which runs alongside the Treasury, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO), Downing Street and the Ministry of Defence. We arranged for a photographer to take a few shots. Click through on the image below:

9) Over 500 Commonwealth Flags were also flown all over the UK thanks to the Fly a Flag for the Commonwealth initiative.

10) On Friday we had a productive meeting with the Commonwealth Unit at the FCO to discuss our programme of activity and how we can collaborate to make sure the Commonwealth thrives in the 21st Century.