Laura Davies » Deputy High Commissioner to Sri Lanka and the Maldives

Laura Davies

Former Deputy High Commissioner to Sri Lanka and the Maldives

Part of UK in Sri Lanka

10th November 2015 Colombo, Sri Lanka

Bond comes to Colombo 007

James Bond’s latest adventure, SPECTRE, launched in Sri Lanka last week.  To celebrate, we held a glittering party at the High Commissioner’s residence, in Colombo 007.  Guests came from Sri Lanka’s creative arts scene, business and Government to admire the best of British talent.

“The name is Dauris, James Dauris”
“The name is Dauris, James Dauris”

Beautiful cars driven at high speed around extraordinary locations are an essential Bond ingredient.  So we had three of the most iconic Bond cars on display in the Residence gardens, including a splendid red Jaguar F Type and a gleaming black Range Rover Autobiography. They provided a suitably impressive backdrop for speeches by the High Commissioner and the Prime Minister, two self-proclaimed lifelong Bond fans.  As the High Commissioner said in his speech, “British cars push the boundaries in engineering and design: for outstanding innovation, craftsmanship and design, choose the UK.”

Sri Lanka Prime Minister standing next to a Jaguar F type
Sri Lanka Prime Minister standing next to a Jaguar F type

In one of my favourite scenes from SPECTRE, Bond steers an Aston Martin DB 10 (with certain highly specialised engineering features) around the streets of Rome.  So it was only appropriate that Sri Lanka’s oldest Aston Martin, a DB2, was there to welcome guests on arrival.

As well as admiring the cars, guests had the opportunity to try on the new Omega Bond watch.  No Bond film would be complete without some great gadgets, so if you haven’t seen the film already, look out for the role the watch plays at a critical juncture for our hero…  And you can’t have a Bond party without cocktails.  As Bond explains in the book Casino Royale, “I never have more than one drink before dinner. But I do like that one to be large and very strong and very cold, and very well-made.”  Belvedere vodka provided appropriately excellent martinis – shaken, not stirred – from behind an elegant bar, and Heineken supplied Bond’s beer of choice.

ABU_5375SPECTRE is the 24th Bond film.  The 007 franchise, which opened with Dr No in 1962, is the longest running in film history.  The evening was also an occasion to celebrate the success of Britain’s creative industries.  James Bond’s iconic international profile is just one example of what makes Britain’s creative industries great.  Bigger than Bollywood, Britain’s film industry generates £6 billion for our economy each year, with over 6,000 film production companies employing more than 100,000 people.  The creative industries – from TV and music, to architecture, advertising, design, fashion, computer games – employ more than 1.7 million people in the UK and account for more than 5% of our economy.


Bond has also proved to be an excellent ambassador for British tourism, with the films encouraging millions worldwide to book a holiday in the UK.  After Glencoe was used as a filming location for SKYFALL, visitor numbers almost doubled.  Bond travels the world: the Day of the Dead makes a dramatic backdrop for the opening scenes of the film.  Thousands of British tourists enjoy Sri Lanka’s exciting, exotic and romantic destinations.  How long until Bond comes here?


For more pictures of the Bond launch event at Westminster house, visit our flickr gallery

If Bond has inspired you to Visit Britain, find out about visas here.

And if SPECTRE’s plot touched a nerve, why not read Welcoming Sri Lanka to the Cybercrime Convention?