Jonathan Knott

Former British ambassador to Hungary, Budapest

Part of Stay Ahead of the Games UK in Hungary

31st July 2012 Budapest, Hungary

Olympic D-Day

Well it’s tough to write about anything but the Olympics right now. At last the day has come and the competition is on for more than 10,000 athletes from 205 countries. And so far it’s every bit as exciting as we’d hoped.

Did you see the opening ceremony? We organised a small event on Friday night in co-operation with the British Chamber of Commerce in Hungary for a few business and political contacts and the ceremony was shown on a big screen. I thought it was fantastic.  I loved the human tone and the sense of humour that flowed though the show. And, of course, the highlight was the Queen’s appearance alongside Daniel Craig as James Bond. There was a cheer at our party when she turned round and you could see it was really her. I also liked the blend of tradition and high tech, culture and innovation which the director, Danny Boyle put together. And, of course, the music from the 80s and 90s which he used. My music era. Of course you can’t please everyone: one of our guests at the party said they should have used Depeche Mode.

And now I’m glued to the coverage. There are sports I’ve competed in myself (at a modest level) like swimming, tennis, fencing and rowing which I’m enjoying.  But I’ve also got into the gymnastics and the cycling. In fact I’m becoming an Olympo-holic. I get excited by pretty much any of the Olympic sports. It’s great to see such talented, disciplined  and dedicated people compete at this level. An inspiration to us all. Of course I’m cheering for the Hungarian athletes. Nearly as loudly as I do for Team GB. And Hungary is ahead of Britain in the medal table at the moment after that sensational fencing gold.

I didn’t see it myself, but I understand there was a problem with the playing of the Hungarian national anthem when that gold medal was presented. But the Hungarian Olympic Association have been in touch with the Games Organisers, who promised to sort it out immediately. And I look forward to hearing the Hungarian national anthem many times over the next two weeks of Olympics and the following two of Paralympics.

Hajrá magyarok!

About Jonathan Knott

Jonathan Knott was appointed Her Majesty’s Ambassador to Hungary in March 2011 and arrived in Budapest in February 2012 to take up his post. He left this post on April…

Jonathan Knott was appointed Her Majesty’s Ambassador to
Hungary in March 2011 and arrived in Budapest in February 2012 to take
up his post. He left this post on April 2015.
He has previously held a variety of diplomatic posts at home and
abroad, several with a particular focus on commercial and corporate
finance issues. Jonathan has served in a number of positions in the
British Diplomatic Service since joining in 1988:
Before his appointment was Deputy Head of Mission and Director for Trade and Investment in South Korea from 2008 to 2011.Between 2005 and 2008 he held the post of Deputy Finance Director in the FCO.From 2000 to 2005 he served as First Secretary (Trade, Corporate Affairs and Finance Negotiator) in UKDel OECD Paris.From 1996 to 2000 he was First Secretary (Head of Political/Economic/Aid Section) in Mexico.From 1995 to 1996 he worked in the FCO as Deputy European Correspondent at the EU Directorate.Between 1991 and 1995 he served as Third later Second Secretary (Political / Press and Public Affairs) in Havana.From 1990 to 1991 he was Desk Officer in the FCO’s First Gulf War Emergency Unit.Between 1988 and 1990 he worked as Desk Officer in the FCO in the Anti Drugs Cooperation Department.
Jonathan holds an MA in law from Oxford University, and he is a
member of the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants. He speaks
English, French, Spanish and Hungarian. He is married to Angela Susan
Knott and has one daughter and two sons.

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