Chairman’s Letter to Ambassador of Slovenia

David Lloyd, Chairman of the British Slovene Society, sent the message below to HE Tadej Rupel, Ambassador of Slovenia in the UK, on 24 February 2019:

Dear Tadej,

I feel that I must apologise, as a former British ambassador to Slovenia, for the ill-chosen words of our Foreign Secretary during his recent visit to Slovenia, referring to Slovenia as a vassal state of the Soviet Union. I am sure that Slovenians will brush this aberration aside with their customary goodwill, but I am deeply embarrassed.

I look forward to seeing you on Wednesday evening at President Pahor’s Reception.

Best wishes, David

See: https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2019/feb/23/soviet-vassal-state-jeremy-hunt-makes-gaffe-in-slovenia?CMP=Share_iOSApp_Other

Slovenia’s Order of Merit awarded to John Corsellis


John Corsellis, who died last November, has been posthumously awarded the Order of Merit of the Republic of Slovenia in London.

The award was made for his work as a humanitarian aid worker caring for several thousand Slovene refugees in Displaced Persons camps in Austria in the years after World War II.

Tadej Rupel, Slovenia’s Ambassador to the United KIngdom, presented the award to John’s widow, Ann Corsellis, in a ceremony at the Slovenian Embassy on 4th February also attended by John’s three children, a grandson and family friends.

John was co-author of a book entitled Slovenia 1945 published in 2005.

Modern style Slovene folk songs for Prešeren Evening – and a Carniolan Bee

Two up-and-coming young musicians from Slovenia, Gregor Volk and Goran Krmač, enlivened the British-Slovene Society’s 2019 Prešeren Evening on 9th February. And for the first time the Carniolan Bee put in a guest appearance.

In an evening hosted by Shirlie Roden, who herself sang her ever popular Zeleni Zmaj, the two artists from Slovenia enchanted the 87 participants with their original takes on Slovene folk-songs.


The medieval town of Višnja Gora in Slovenia is celebrating its local Carniolan Bee, which is hard-working, not aggressive and has become a favourite among beekeepers around the world. Each table had a paper-cut-out Carniolan Bee to stick together during the meal. It was not easy.

In the end the musicians judged which was the best, and the prize of a pot of Carniolan bee honey went to Zala Sekne (right), an undergraduate student at Oxford University. Here she is with the contestants, including Slovenian Ambassador Tadej Rupel, who kindly donated Slovenian wine for the evening. Alas, his bee did not quite make the grade.


The well-known Slovene story, A Goat Trial, by Josip Jurčič, has been translated into English by Evelina and Marcus Ferrar and was among the prizes in the tombola, which raised £456 for Barka, the Slovene charity for people with special needs. Main prize was a tumble dryer donated by Gorenje.

The Government Office for Slovenes Abroad kindly gave financial support to the Evening.

Book for the BSS Prešeren Evening on 9th February

BOOK NOW FOR THE BRITISH-SLOVENE SOCIETY’S PREŠEREN EVENING

WITH GREGOR VOLK AND GORAN KRMAČ

–         Saturday 9th February 2019. Drinks from 6.30 pm, dinner at 7.20 pm.

–        Ambassadors Bloomsbury Hotel, 12 Upper Woburn Place, London WC1H 0HX (undergrounds Euston, Euston Square, King’s Cross, Russell Square)

Singer Gregor Volk and tuba player Goran Krmač, two of Slovenia’s up-and-coming young entertainers, will perform for us after dinner.

We are keeping rates at the same as last year:

–         Members £45, non-members £60, students and under-18s  £29.

For that you will enjoy a drinks reception, a three-course dinner with wine, the concert and a tombola with all sorts of attractive prizes.

Proceeds of tombola will, as always, go to Barka, the Slovenian charity we support.

–         Reserve your places now using the Application Form below. Space is limited, so it’s first come, first serve.

You should assume that paid-for places have been reserved unless you hear to the contrary. No tickets will be issued.

If you wish to make up your own party, please nominate a host who will book the table in his/her name. Please advise if you have any dietary requirements.

We are grateful to the Embassy of the Republic of Slovenia in London for donating Slovenian wine for the occasion and to the Government of the Republic of Slovenia for granting the British-Slovene Society a subsidy.

2019 2 9 Preseren Evening application form