Paul Brummell, British Ambassador to Romania

Paul Brummell

Head of Soft Power and External Affairs Department, Communication Directorate

Part of UK in Romania

5th January 2017

2016 at the British Embassy Bucharest

Group photo

January is a time for looking both back and forward, rather like the Roman God Janus. Here’s a personal selection of a dozen of the highlights of a busy and productive 2016 at the British Embassy Bucharest.

People discussing in a roomIn January I was in London for the DIT Civil Nuclear Showcase, talking to UK companies in the civil nuclear sector about the opportunities offered in Central Europe. Support for British companies looking to develop their exports to Romania is a major strand of my, and the Embassy’s work, and one which took up a great deal of focus throughout the year.

British and Romanian officials meetingFebruary saw the visit to Romania of Matt Hancock MP, Minister for the Cabinet Office, in a visit focused on sharing UK experience of public administration reform. It was part of a range of activities and discussions on practical matters which marked our close collaboration throughout the year with the technocratic government of Dacian Ciolos.

Officials at launch event

In March I was delighted to join the mayor of Cluj-Napoca, Emil Boc, in opening in that city the first branch of the British Romanian Chamber of Commerce to be established outside Bucharest; an indication of the growing importance of the largest city in Transylvania for British exporters and investors.

The British Chief of Defence Staff, Sir Nick Houghton, visited Romania in April, a mark of the deepening bilateral defence collaboration which saw the arrival in 2016 of British officers into both the NATO Forward Integration Unit and Multinational Divisional Headquarters (South-East) in Bucharest, as well as UK participation in a range of joint exercises alongside Romanian colleagues, and two productive visits to the UK of the Romanian Defence Minister.

Defence officials talking

In MRomanian official talking on TVay we were pleased to welcome the participation at the London Anti-Corruption Summit of Deputy Prime Minister Costin Borc and Justice Minister Raluca Pruna; reflecting our close bilateral cooperation in tackling the scourge of corruption, and longstanding UK support for Romania’s anti-corruption agencies.

The British Government’s Shakespeare Lives campaign was a major theme of our work in 2016, the 400th anniversary of the playwright’s death. We added a Shakespearian theme to our Queen’s Birthday Party in June, including through the portrayal of scenes from Romeo and Juliet by the Parrabola community-based theatre group.


In July I wasGroup photo honoured to be asked to open a multi-sensory room at an orphanage in Brasov County, to the memory of the late Vikki Askew, one of the Great Britons who devoted so much of her energy to supporting Romanians in need.


Explaining the implications of the outcome of the 23 June EU referendum in the UK, and our determination to continue to build on our close bilateral relationship with Romania, has been a central theme of the last half of the year, including speeches to businesspeople, politicians and students and even, in August, at the Rasnov Historical Film Festival, in a joint event with the Romanian Ambassador to London.

Group photo

Meetings with the future generation of Romanian leaders are always enjoyable and fascinating occasions, and in September I was delighted to meet with the talented young participants in the Romanian Government Internship Programme, for a lively discussion.

Group photoIn October I joined the staff of the great UK-Romanian NGO, Casa Ioana, and other volunteers, in sleeping out in Bucharest on a rainy autumn night to highlight World Homeless Day.

Group photoIn November we welcomed to Romania for the second time in 2016 Sir Eric Pickles, the UK’s Post-Holocaust Envoy, representing the UK at meetings of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance, which had a very productive year under strong Romanian chairmanship.

Alice in Wonderland drawing
Alice in Wonderland: Mr. Sora’s drawing

And in December we invited for tea at the Embassy one of our neighbours, the remarkable writer Mihai Sora, who turned 100 in 2016. La multi ani!

4 comments on “2016 at the British Embassy Bucharest

  1. Right ! I’d read on the website the message of mine from March,the 2nd. I don’t see any affirmative or negative response . I try to be a correct person. When I’ll see or get an affirmative response my comment is about. Everything is in my mind, my soul and my databases. Thank you ! Have a nice 2017’s periode here for all of you !

  2. Have you something on contrary if I’ll publish a complete bearing about what happened in 2016 between me and you (I mean HM’s government) ?
    And why I’ve requested and probably still am under HM’s government’s protection ?
    As though could be understandable a requirement on behalf of an european citizen to a government within an ace of out from … EUROPE( I don’t know what means Europe expectingly the geographical notion, I’d really tried but uselessly).
    I can’t undersign with my real name at the moment. Thank you for all

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