15 Reasons to be Proud of the United Kingdom

Trooping the Colour, Saturday 9 June 2018. Pic copyright AFFG

The following speech was presented by Alistair McConnachie to the London Swinton Circle (Chairman, Allan Robertson) on Tuesday 5 June 2018 at 7.00pm at the Counting House, 50 Cornhill, London. All photographs are copyright AFFG.

In Memoriam Christopher Luke

Ladies and Gentleman, thank you for coming along tonight.

Before I begin, I'd just like to say a word about an absent friend who's not with us tonight.

As many of you know, Christopher Luke passed away at the end of last year.

I first encountered Christopher when I was publishing my monthly anti-EU newsletter Sovereignty. I began that in June 1999. Christopher must have been given a copy because towards the end of that year I was delighted to find in my post, a copy of his 4-page newsletter

Unionist, number 16.

So from then on, we did a swop – he'd send me Unionist from "The Royal Borough of Tunbridge Wells" as he liked to call it, and I'd send him Sovereignty each month and we did that for the next 10 years.

I was very interested to read his ideas about the Union and he definitely contributed towards my understanding of it, especially in relation to Northern Ireland.

During those 10 years, we corresponded via email and occasionally by phone, but it wasn't until I spoke here in 2009 that I actually met him for the first time.

Since then, he would come to my annual talk here, and I was always very grateful for that, and it was good to catch up.

I didn't know Christopher beyond our shared political interests, but in that sense, we knew each other very well!

Unionism lost a good thinker, advocate and a staunch British Patriot, when he passed away at the end of last year.