Bishop László Kiss-Rigó of Szeged-Csanád, Rev. Canon John O’Toole, National Ecumenical Officer and Secretary for Dialogue and Unity at the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales, and Father Valentine Erhahon of Saint Thomas Roman Catholic Church concelebrated the Sunday Mass in Canterbury Cathedral. The Very Rev. Robert Willis, Dean of Canterbury was also in attendance.
Towards the conclusion of the Becket Week of 23 and 29 May, the relic of St Thomas Becket from Esztergom arrived at Canterbury, its final stop in the United Kingdom, before returning to Hungary.
St Thomas Becket’s relic from Esztergom together with the Hungarian delegation arrived in Rochester on 27 May and was welcomed in Rochester Cathedral.
A symposium commemorating St. Thomas Becket was organised in Lambeth Palace on 27 May. István Mikola, Minister of State of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade of Hungary gave a welcome speech in the presence of Etelka Romanek, Mayor of Esztergom.
Due to the Bank Holiday the Consulate will be closed on 30th May.
László Kövér, Speaker of the Hungarian Parliament paid a visit to London on 25 May where he attended events of the Becket Week and met with British counterparts.
On its one-week tour in the United Kingdom, the relic of St Thomas Becket was welcomed at Westminster Abbey on 24 May. The Solemn Evensong on this occasion was attended by His Excellency János Áder, President of the Republic of Hungary, and Ms Anita Herczegh, the First Lady of Hungary.
During his visit to the United Kingdom connected to the Becket Week, President János Áder met Prime Minister David Cameron at 10 Downing Street on 24 May. The two leaders touched upon the upcoming EU referendum in the UK and exchanged views about climate change and global water issues.
On 24 May Ambassador Péter Szabadhegy hosted a lunch in honour of János Áder, the President of the Republic of Hungary, with participants from the Hungarian Science Club. After the lunch, the Ambassador presented the Commander's Cross of the Order of Merit of Hungary to Sir George Radda.
The relic of St Thomas Becket returned to the Saint’s birthplace, rebuilt and transformed into the Mercers’ Hall. It was welcomed by members of one of the oldest and most prestigious livery companies in London.
The relic of St Thomas Becket arrived from Esztergom, Hungary, for a week-long journey to the United Kingdom and was welcomed at a Holy Mass at Westminster Cathedral on 23 May, celebrated by His Eminence Cardinal Péter Erdő, Archbishop of Esztergom-Budapest, Primate of Hungary, and His Eminence Cardinal Vincent Nichols, Archbishop of Westminster, in the presence of His Excellency János Áder, President of the Republic of Hungary, and Ms Anita Herczegh, the First Lady of Hungary.
On the first day of his London visit, President János Áder met Lord Speaker Baroness D’Souza in the House of Lords and the Rt Hon the Lord Mayor Alderman the Lord Mountevans at the Mansion House.
Mihály Varga, Minister for National Economy opened the trading day of the London Stock Exchange on 12 May. In his speech he announced that Yuan-denominated Hungarian government bonds were now also being traded in the capital city of the United Kingdom. These bonds were issued in April 2016 with the assistance of the experts of the London Stock Exchange and the Bank of China.
During the Becket Week, which takes place between 23 and 29 May, one of the highlights will be when the relic of Saint Thomas Becket from Esztergom arrives at Canterbury on 28 May before returning to Hungary on 29 May.
Ambassador Péter Szabadhegy and the Lord Mayor of Westminster Lady Christabel Flight unveiled the plaque on the building where the conductor and music teacher had lived for 40 years.
The image of the reliquary in which the fragment of bone from Saint Thomas Becket’s arm will be transported from Hungary to the United Kingdom is now available.
Zoltán Kovács, Government Spokesperson at the Cabinet Office of the Prime Minister of Hungary visited London between 25 and 27 April, where he gave a speech about the Hungarian position on the migrant crisis at the ’Pan-European Freight Security and the Migrant Crisis’ conference and exchanged views about government communications at the No10 Downing Street and the Cabinet Office.
On 24 April, 2016 Ambassador Péter Szabadhegy visited Cambridge University on the occasion of the formal dinner of the Future: Hungary conference. The highly successful event was organized by the Cambridge University Hungary Society and the New Generation Centre London. The keynote speaker at the conference was Katalin Novák, State Secretary for Family and Youth Affairs, Ministry of Human Resources.On 24 April, 2016 Ambassador Péter Szabadhegy visited Cambridge University on the occasion of the formal dinner of the Future: Hungary conference. The highly successful event was organized by the Cambridge University Hungary Society and the New Generation Centre London. The keynote speaker at the conference was Katalin Novák, State Secretary for Family and Youth Affairs, Ministry of Human Resources.
The launch event of the ‘Becket Week’ will be a Holy Mass at Westminster Cathedral on 23 May celebrated by Cardinal Péter Erdő, Primate of Hungary, Archbishop of Esztergom-Budapest, in the presence of János Áder, President of the Republic of Hungary and Cardinal Vincent Nichols, Archbishop of Westminster.
As part of the Széchenyi memorial year 2016 our Embassy hosted a unique event on the 1838 Pest flood and evoked Ferenc Liszt's benefit concert on 18 April 1838 in Vienna.
The Hungarian and Polish Ambassadors held a wreath-laying ceremony at the memorial plaque of the 1956 Hungarian Uprising at Ognisko Polskie (The Polish Hearth Club) in South Kensington, London.
On 15 April, Ambassador Peter Szabadhegy paid a visit Manchester to explore further opportunities for cooperation between ’the Northern Powerhouse’ and Hungary with special focus on business and education. After his official engagements, the Ambassador also met with representatives of the local Hungarian community, who explained their efforts to build a strong and valuable community for the whole region and to preserve their Hungarian heritage.
On 14 April Ambassador Péter Szabadhegy hosted the members of the London Mayors' Association and several incumbent London borough mayors. The special guest of the event was Councillor Robert Davis, the president of the London Mayors' Association.
During the Becket week between 23 and 29 May, many events will be open for the public as well. The relic will be on public display in the main cathedrals of London, Canterbury and Rochester. Those interested are also welcome to join a short pilgrimage on 28 May in Canterbury.
In a joint initiative with the Church of England and the Catholic Church of England and Wales, the Embassy of Hungary will bring the relic of Saint Thomas Becket, having been kept in Esztergom/Hungary for centuries, to the United Kingdom. The set of events called ‘Becket Week’ will take place between 23 and 29 May.
The Hungarian Parliament's Deputy Speaker visited London and held a number of meetings in Westminster and Whitehall.
Gergely Gulyás, Deputy Speaker of the Hungarian Parliament was the guest of honour at the National Day reception at St Peter’s Church on 15 March, hosted by Ambassador Péter Szabadhegy.
Ambassador Péter Szabadhegy and the Lord Mayor of Manchester, Mr Paul Murphy, unveiled the Lajos Kossuth bronze Plaque at Manchester Town Hall on 15 March. The Plaque was initiated by Mr Gábor Bartos and Mr Gábor Oláh on behalf of the Hungarian community in Manchester.
On 11 March Ambassador Péter Szabadhegy visited Exeter University and gave a lecture on ‘Hungary’s Place in the Heart of Europe’. He met with professor Tim Quine, Interim Deputy Vice-Chancellor for Education, the members of the Hungarian Student Association and Hungarian lecturers.
On 23-24 February Gergely Böszörményi Nagy, Managing Director of Design Terminal, the national center for creative indutries in Budapest had successful meetings with several of the leading figures in the creative industry in London.
Gyula Budai, Ministerial Commissioner for measures related to the Russian embargo paid a visit to London on 17-18 February, where he held discussions at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and in the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.
Péter Szijjártó, Minister of Foreign Affair and Trade of Hungary, represented Hungary at the international donor conference held on 4 February in London aimed at raising new funds to help the victims of the ongoing crisis in Syria.
The Hungarian Science Club has been founded by the Hungarian Embassy in London on 28 January 2016. The event was addressed by Gergely Prőhle, deputy state secretary. At the academic symposium Hungarian scientists presented their work, followed by music from singer and songwriter Veronika Harcsa. The participants also commemorated Ignac Semmelweis on the occasion of the Semmelweis Year.
On the occasion of the Day of Hungarian CultureMr. János Áder, President of the Republic of Hungary awarded The Knight’s Cross of the Order of Merit of Hungary to Mr. Peter Broadbent, choral conductor and Mr. Sándor Pál Váci architect for their outstanding and devoted work in the United Kingdom to promote the relationship between the UK and Hungary. The award was presented by Ambassador Péter Szabadhegy at the Embassy of Hungary.
Ambassador Péter Szabadhegy hosted Minister of State David Lidington and Ambassadors of the Visegrad Group at a working lunch to discuss current issues of mutual interest on 13 January 2016.
After talks in Budapest on Thursday with Prime Minister of the United Kingdom David Cameron, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán stated that both leaders want a strong Europe. At their joint press conference, Mr. Orbán spoke about Hungarians working in Britain, pointing out that it is important that they should not be subject to any discrimination. At the same time he stressed that Hungary is open to all reasonable British proposals designed to put an end to abuses in the field of social benefits.
Upon the invitation of the European-Atlantic Group, Ambassador Péter Szabadhegy debated Hungary’s migration policy at the House of Commons on 2 December with a diverse and well-informed audience.
In the presence of Her Royal Highness Princess Alexandra, Ambassador Péter Szabadhegy and Gabriella Szabadhegy hosted the annual Gala Dinner in honour of Saint Margaret of Scotland with the Guest of Honour Professor János Martonyi, former Minister of Foreign Affairs on 16 November 2015 at The Caledonian Club.
Szabolcs Takács, State Secretary for EU Affairs of the Prime Minister’s Office held talks in London regarding the reforms of the European Union required by the United Kingdom, and Hungarian-British EU cooperation in that context.
His Excellency Ambassador Péter Szabadhegy hosted a Hungarian National Day reception to commemorate the 59th anniversary of the 1956 Hungarian Revolution and to pay homage to the heroes of 1956, especially former Hungarian President Árpád Göncz.
On 15th of October, Ambassador Peter Szabadhegy gave a reception in honour of Hungarian students starting their university studies in the UK this year. More than 90 students participated from the University of Cambridge, University of Oxford, University of Warwick, Imperial College London, King’s College, SOAS, UCL, University of Kent, University of Westminster, University of Dundee, Richmond University and LSE. The executive committee members of the Hungarian Students Societies from the universities and participants of the Kőrösi Csoma Sandor Scholarship programme were also present at the reception.
On 22 September Ambassador Péter Szabadhegy held a press brief for the leading representatives of the British media to give a first hand and detailed background on the migration crisis.
Ambassador Péter Szabadhegy had a live interview with BBC News and discussed various topics in regards to migration.
Ambassador Péter Szabadhegy had a live interview with Sky News and discussed various topics in regards to migration such as the new Hungarian legislative framework, the control of the borders of the European Union, Hungary's perspective on the quotas, and emphasized the need for a joint European solution, as well as that all registered migrants receive proper treatment in Hungary.
The Human Capacities Minister had talks with his counterparts, gave a lecture at UCL and was the guest of honour at our Saint Margaret gala dinner.
Our Embassy organized a panel discussion in the House of Lords to mark the handover of the Chairmanship of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) from the UK to Hungary.
Ambassador Péter Szabadhegy presented his credentials to The Queen on 8 October 2014.