Busy days for Falklands lawmakers and the representative of the Islands' government office in London, FIGO, as they attend the round of British parties conference in England for political contacts and to commercially promote the Falklands.
Members of the Legislative Assembly Jan Cheek and Roger Edwards, together with Sukey Cameron, head of FIGO were present at the Labour conference in Brighton, which on this occasion had a special interest since it took place a few weeks after the party elected new authorities and leader James Corbyn.
The event extended from 27 to 30 September and the Falklands' stand was visited by a succession of Labour leaders, including Hilary Benn, shadow Foreign Secretary; Alan Johnson a former Home Secretary; David Hanson a Foreign Office shadow minister; Chris Bryant, shadow leader at the House of Commons, and Maria Eagle, shadow Secretary of State for Defense, all of whom were supportive of the Falklands. Another visitor was Ian Murray the sole surviving Labour MP in Scotland who visited the Islands a few years ago and retains a strong interest. He is shadow secretary of state for Scotland.
Among first callers were a brace of peers; Lord Dubs who spoke up for the Falklands us as far back as 1982 and has been a long time supporter. He was swiftly followed by Lord Foulkes another long time supporter.
MLA Cheek also attended an interesting fringe meeting on constitutional reform aimed at retaining the union which makes up the United Kingdom. Distinguished speakers from the major parties suggested that reaction to the Scottish referendum by unionists had been too little, too late and that a good debate needed to start without delay.
A similar event will take place in Manchester next week and I intend to attend that also. It has relevance for us as we are currently an overseas territory of the UK, if the UK splits where will the OTs stand? pointed out MLA Jan Cheek.