This week we marked Commonwealth Day, an opportunity for us to come together as a family of nations, and celebrate our shared history, and united future.

2024 also marks the 75th anniversary of the Modern Commonwealth, created to allow for India to move to a republic system, paving the way for modernisation and allowing other states to become republics and rejoin.

The Commonwealth, despite the vast distances between us, and the rich cultural diversity of member states, unites us in a shared vision of development, democracy, and peace.

The past of the Commonwealth is of course rooted in the British Empire, and we should never seek to shy away from difficult conversations about our history.

But it is today a thriving community of nations, working together for the common good.

Whilst some suggest the relevance and impact of the Commonwealth is beginning to wane, if we look around our communities in Greater Manchester, that could not be further from the truth.

We are lucky to live in a richly diverse city, where people with heritage from all around the world have come to settle here, raise a family here, and contribute to the fabric of our communities.

Whether it is Caribbean communities, South-East Asian communities, or African communities, they all play their part in the richness of society and make Manchester, and our own borough of Tameside, the places that they are.

Their very presence here is rooted in the shared history of the Commonwealth, and the continued close ties between the UK and member states ensures positive relationships and ever deepening cultural ties.

Such a part of Mancunian society has our Commonwealth heritage become that it is woven into the very fabric of what makes Greater Manchester great.

Just look at the Curry Mile (or its new rival Stockport Road in Longsight and Levenshulme) as one example.

A rich wealth of cultural diversity that shows the very best of our diverse communities, yet totally interwoven in the fabric of what people think of when they think of Greater Manchester.

Whilst our touchpoints with the Commonwealth as an institution might be rare, the impact it has on our community, and our day to day lives, is very tangible.

I look forward to continuing to engage with and celebrate the rich diversity that the Commonwealth family has brought us and will always be a champion for it.

Constituency Office Address

Town Hall, Market Street, Denton, M34 2AP

Parliamentary Office Address

House of Commons, London, SW1A 0AA