Richard Shackleton, Deputy Head of Mission, British Embassy Budapest

  • 22 Sep 2020 12:04 PM
Richard Shackleton, Deputy Head of Mission, British Embassy Budapest
Richard assumed the role of Deputy Head of Mission, British Embassy in Budapest in August 2020 having been Deputy Head of Mission at the British Embassy in Helsinki since 2016.

His previous roles included work on energy and climate change issues in Mexico, as well as time in India, Bulgaria and Colombia.

Richard also worked at the UK Mission to the United Nations in New York as well as in the former Department of Energy and Climate Change.

1. When did you arrive in Hungary and what brought you here?
July 2020. I came to take up my new posting as Deputy Head of Mission at the British Embassy in Budapest.

2. Have you ever been an expatriate elsewhere?
Lots of places as a diplomat: The United States of America (UN in New York), Colombia, Bulgaria, India, Mexico and Finland.

3. What surprised you most about Hungary?
The Thunder storms in August!

4. Friends are in Budapest for a weekend - what must they absolutely see and do?
There’s so much to see, I’d go for a stroll amongst the markets of Pest, a cruise on the Danube and take buses, trams, trains and chairlifts to different parts of Buda to see the views.

5. What is your favourite Hungarian food?
Gulyás - It’s always tasty and can be presented in different ways.

6. What is never missing from your refrigerator?
Magnets on the outside to remind me of places I’ve been.

7. What is your favourite Hungarian word?
Szia – it’s a bit like ciao and can be used to be friendly both at the beginning and the end of an encounter.

8. What do you miss most from home?
My family and friends. The biggest downside of a diplomatic career is that you need to constantly move to new places and develop a new set of friends from scratch – But that can be a positive upside too!

9. What career other than yours would you love to pursue?
Sommelier – that would allow me to really get to know more about something I love – wine.

10. What's a job you would definitely never want?
There are jobs that I’ve done that I wouldn’t want to do again but I’ve always found that each new experience brings some positive benefits in the end.

11. Where did you spend your last vacation?
In Colombia, with my in-laws.

12. Where do you hope to spend your next holiday?
In Colombia with my in-laws – we normally try to go once a year but with the covid 19 crisis it has been a lot longer this time

13. Apart of temptation what can't you resist?
Travel and exploring new places.

14. What was your favourite band, film, or hobby as a teen?
Film: Breakfast Club

15. Red wine or white?
Red Wine – and there’s so much to try here in Hungary. OK…. I also love Rose and White wines too!

16. Book or movie?
Can I say both? I like to compare different interpretations of the same theme. The differences challenge preconceived ideas – many times I read a book believing the main character looks a certain way only to have that challenged by the casting in a film – and so on.

17. Morning person or night person?
Night Person

18. Which social issue do you feel most strongly about?
Climate Change. The UK is going to be host of COP26 in Glasgow next year. It’s our chance to highlight that real action is required globally and that it can be good for business and can help us rebuild the global economy after the Covid19 crisis in a more sustainable way.

19. Buda or Pest side?
I’d go with Pest – for the buzz and you can look at the splendour of Buda from that side of the river.

20. What would you say is your personal motto?
Always enjoy what you do – enthusiasm is infectious

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