I was invited by Lancashire County Council to attend a lunchtime reception in the State Rooms, Speaker’s House, House of Commons on 23 November. It was a very special celebration of Lancashire held by the Speaker, Sir Lindsay Hoyle, who is the Member of Parliament for Chorley. In a meeting with other Lancashire leaders, I represented the North Western Baptist Association as an Ecumenical leader for Lancashire.
The event was held to mark Lancashire Day. On this day in 1295, the first elected representatives from the county were called to Westminster by King Edward I to attend what later became known as “The Model Parliament”. The Lancashire Day Proclamation is read out by town criers throughout the county on 27 November and at 9pm Lancastrians celebrate with the toast, unique to Lancashire: “The King, Duke of Lancaster”.
The Lancashire 2050 framework document is a new, bold strategic vision developed by all of Lancashire’s 15 councils. It is about the future of our county, bringing people together in sharing future vision, ambition, goals and priorities, and setting out the areas where we can work together to help our county and its people thrive.
The document outlines eight priorities:
- Economic prosperity
- Transport and infrastructure
- Environment and climate
- Early years education
- Employment and skills
- Health and wellbeing
- Communities and place
Partners in the framework commit to working collaboratively, listening to residents, and being open and transparent.
Although churches are not mentioned directly in the framework, Lancashire County Council recognises the valuable contribution of faith communities across Lancashire and especially those working with foodbanks, clothing and accommodation centres.
Church leaders in Lancashire are committed to working with all Christian denominations to do all we can to promote the gospel through our prayers, our life together and our service to the communities. We are looking forward to working together to discern and enable our mission and service to the people of Lancashire.
Find out more about Churches Together in Lancashire.
Photo L to R: Rev Brian Drury (North Western Baptist Association Denominational Ecumenical Officer), Sir Lindsay Hoyle, Speaker of the House of Commons, Rev Anton Müller, County Ecumenical Officer for Lancashire, The Rt Rev John Fenwick Bishop of the Northern Province of the Free Church of England.