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Ribble Valley MP Nigel Evans has had a busy month speaking about the Civil War at a prestigious dinner, meeting the Australian High Commissioner and attending the G7 Speakers’ Conference in Chorley

I finally took the courage to get my eyesight surgically improved. I was worried of course, but the care could not have been better, and the results are terrific. Mr Manu, the surgeon, has performed 18,000 of these operations and he and his team at Optical Express reassured me that I would feel no pain and my eyesight would be 20/20. He was right and I can now see clearly without the need for spectacles. It really is a new lease of life!

I spoke at a dinner in Worcester on behalf of The Speaker about the involvement of Speaker Lenthall with Charles I and the Civil War. I was escorted from my accommodation to the glorious Guildhall by two Civil War re-enactment volunteers, which was surreal. Three thousand people died at the Battle of Worcester, and I was able to tell the audience that we had our own local Battle of Preston where 2,000 perished. Oliver Cromwell had travelled through the Ribble Valley and, of course, stayed at Stonyhurst among many other local places. It was as a result of the actions of the king that Parliament became ascendant and to this day the monarch is not allowed to enter the House of Commons chamber.

I had a chat with the wonderful Michael Flatley in the Saville Club to congratulate him on his Freedom of the City of London. He surprised us all by pulling out a flute and expertly playing an old Irish folk song. I never thought anything could surpass his abilities to dance, but the music was tremendous!

I welcomed the Australian High Commissioner to Parliament and he informed me that relations between the UK and Australia were incredibly good. He couldn’t have been more correct as, a few days later, we heard of the new defence co-operation between our two countries and the USA. This will be a huge boost to our exports and our defence capabilities.

I, along with The Speaker, demonstrated our support for British farming during Farming Week. It goes without saying that we in Lancashire know how important agriculture is to food security, exports and also to tourism. I was honoured to be asked to be the President of the Royal Lancashire Show next year, which I have enthusiastically accepted.

Our produce was on show at the G7 Speakers’ Conference in Chorley when celebrity chef Paul Heathcote served some incredible local food to the delegates including House of Representative Speaker Nancy Pelosi. We also were entertained in the evening by Lancashire’s very own Alfie Boe. He sang a few songs in Italian much to the delight of the Italian Speaker, and then belted out Bring Him Home from Les Miserables, which received a standing ovation.

The event put Lancashire on the world stage with the Red Arrows flying over Chorley and the conference came to a close with a discussion about the importance of media on the set of Coronation Street. It made me proud that world leaders were coming to Lancashire and not just staying in London.

The beauty of it all was, I was able to see the whole event more clearly than I could ever have anticipated thanks to my improved eyesight, which couldn’t have been tested on anything finer over the past few weeks.



Tedd Walmsley

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Tedd Walmsley managing director of Live Magazines shares his views on the latest topics in media.

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