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Wednesday, 30 October 2013

Gibraltar Day in London

The Archdeacons of the Diocese joined Bishop Geoffrey and me for the annual Gibraltar Day celebrations at the Guildhall in London on Monday 21 October. The Senior Staff were gathering for our usual meetings, but it was an occasion not to be missed, as this diocese is, in fact, the Diocese of Gibraltar in Europe. 

The Chief Minister and Minister of Finance of Gibraltar, the Honorable Fabian Picardo, gave the keynote address at the event in the City. He made many intriguing references to Gibraltar as the world's foremost centre for the delivery of "online gaming services" with over 60% of bets placed online globally being handled by Gibraltar companies! I am not sure we all felt entirely at ease with this fact.

We were all reminded that this year marks the 300th anniversary of the Treaty of Utrecht, signed in 1713, which had among its provisions that Spain would cede Gibraltar to Great Britain. One of the loudest refrains heard at the Gibraltar day celebrations was, indeed, “Gibraltar has been British for 300 years. Let’s keep it that way!" 

The next day of meetings was a little quieter in tone, and included evensong at Southwark Cathedral, nearby where we were meeting.

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