The Spanish Embassy opened its doors for one of the biggest annual events organised by the BritishSpanish Society.
- Posted by British Spanish Society
- On June 22, 2015
A long queue of people waited expectantly outside the Spanish Ambassador’s residence on a warm early summer evening in June to join the BritishSpanish Society summer party. The Spanish Ambassador to the UK and honorary president of the Society Federico Trillo-Figueroa hosted the event, which gathered Spanish and British people of all ages and professions. During his opening speech, Mr Trillo-Figueroa stated that both institutions have a “very cordial relationship”.
The party helped to raise funds for the Society’s activities, such as the scholarship programme which offers grants to post-graduates from the best universities in the UK and Spain. It helps the “great geniuses of the future”, said Society Chairman Jimmy Burns Marañón. “As a foundation we invest in the future; it is a two-way process”. The Society grants between six to eight scholarships every year in various areas of research.
Pianist Luke Somers performed at the beginning of the reception. This was followed by the Spanish soprano singer Monica Campaña and then SiiLHOUETTE played with her band. The Ambassador gave a speech highlighting the contribution that the Spanish Embassy will make towards the Society’s centenary celebrations in 2016, while Burns emphasised the strength of the Society’s historical relationship with Spanish ambassadors and recalled that the Society does important work for both Spanish and British interests by creating “bridges of cultural, social and commercial understanding”. The Spanish Ambassador added to this, saying that “the BritishSpanish Society is one of the few spaces of social contact between British and Spanish civil societies; that is why it is worth supporting.”
Finally, Burns called for more corporate sponsors for the Society, which has seen its membership rise from 300 to 800 in the last four years, partly as a result of a campaign to attract young Spaniards living in London. In this respect, Trillo explained that the registers of the Consular Offices in London and Edinburgh account for 100, 000 Spanish citizens living in the UK, but the real number is estimated to be more than double this. He made an appeal to all Spaniards not yet registered at the Embassy: “it is much better for them to exercise their rights and be protected”, he explained.
The BritishSpanish Society expresses its gratitude to sponsors of the event: Hispania, IE Business School and Cuatrecasas Gonçalves Pereira; and to the musicians: Luke Somers, Monica Campaña, Ricardo Golsabo, SiiLHOUETTE and her band (Roland Perrin, Emmanuel Oladokun and Eric Kwame Gyingy). Additional thanks go to Carmen Young and her voluntary events team; the security staff and caterers at the Embassy; and to Santiago Fernandez from San Miguel Mahou for providing beer and water.
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