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Canada Plus – May 2016

Your monthly email newsletter from the High Commission of Canada in the United Kingdom. Subscribe now to Canada Plus.

Canada Plus

A Message from the High Commissioner

Photo - Gordon Campbell

On May 4th,  HRH The Prince of Wales and HRH The Duchess of Cornwall visited us at Canada House.  It gave us a chance to show the Royal couple the many ways in which we brought together the old and the new during our recent renovations.  We had a wonderful group of Canadians on hand for the visit along with all High Commission staff. Their Royal Highnesses have made no secret of their admiration for our country, which they last visited in 2014. The Duchess was very interested to see our Canada House honey bees hard at work and we are looking forward to the first Canada House honey this season.  The restoration of the heritage components of Canada House was of particular interest to the Prince of Wales, a strong advocate for architecture that considers heritage and tradition key to any building or neighbourhood. Their Royal Highnesses also viewed the First Nations art that forms an important part of the Canada House collection. In that vein, I was pleased that representatives of the Prince’s Charities Canada were able to join us for the visit. The group’s  work takes its lead from the Prince and includes projects that help aboriginal and at-risk youth and young entrepreneurs across Canada to find their own paths to success. We are grateful to the Royal couple for taking the time to come and see us, it was a terrific start to a busy month of May.
Signature - Gordon Campbell

Gordon Campbell 

Collage - HRH The Prince of Wales and HRH The Duchess of Cornwall at Canada House

HRH The Prince of Wales and HRH The Duchess of Cornwall visited us at Canada House.


New Canada – UK flights

This month sees the long-awaited introduction of new flights between Canada and the UK – with WestJet operating non-stop routes from Toronto, Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton, Winnipeg and St. John’s to Gatwick Airport starting May 7, and Air Canada Rouge introducing its seasonal summer service between Toronto and Gatwick on May 19.

Canada Day, eh?

Canada House will be open to the public on 1 July 2016 to celebrate Canada Day. There will be complimentary refreshments along with activities to mark our 149th birthday. Canada's latest Nobel Prize winner for Physics, Dr Art McDonald, will also be at Canada House to welcome visitors and to launch a new interactive science exhibition in the Canada‎ Gallery that is fun for the whole family.  For updated details on the day, including timings, be sure to check out next month’s Canada Plus newsletter.

Canada Day – what are you up to?

It’s been a few years now since the Trafalgar Square celebration of Canada’s birthday put on by a private firm stopped taking place, but we here at Canada House are eager to ensure you have a list of any Canada Day celebrations happening around the country. If you, or someone you know, is organizing a public event – be it a picnic or a pub night, be sure to let us know, and we’ll share it with Canadians in the UK!

Canada House Update

Our Friday afternoon Canada House tours continue to attract visitors from Canada and right here in the UK. Tour dates for May and June are now on our Tour page, please check regularly for new dates later in the summer.

Drawing - Canada House

Business Brief

Hemp smoothies, muffins and granola were on the menu last week at Canada House, as we hosted the UK launch of PlanetHemp, a Canadian company producing organic hemp-based food products. Executive Vice President Preet Marwaha described how hemp can be used to not only create high-protien nutrient-rich snacks, but to build batteries, trainers and even houses. Commercial production was first licensed in Canada in 1998 and last year, more than 85,000 acres were licensed. Now, Canada is one of the leading quality producers of hemp in the world, and it is grown from coast to coast.

Consular Corner

The passport program has experienced an unprecedented influx of applications as a result of the new requirement for dual citizens to travel to Canada using their Canadian passports. At present, simplified renewal applications are taking an average of 25 business days and regular adult and child applications are taking about 35 business days. If you have submitted an application more than 20 business days ago, are still waiting for your passport back, and have an impending travel plan, please e-mail so that we can assist you. We appreciate the patience of all those who have had to wait longer than usual to get their passport back. We are working diligently to get through the backlog.

If you have a question for us, please email with the subject line “Consular Corner”.

Visa Info

Question: I am a British citizen planning to visit Canada this coming August. Last March, I learned that I needed to obtain an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) to travel to Canada. More recently, however, I heard that I did not need an eTA if I travelled before September! I am now a bit confused: do I need an eTA or not for my trip to Canada in August? Can you please clarify?

Answer: As of March 15, 2016, visa-exempt foreign nationals like you are expected to have an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) to fly or transit through Canada. However, from March 15, 2016 until the autumn of 2016, travellers who do not have an eTA can board their flight, as long as they have appropriate travel documents, such as a valid passport. During this time, border services officers can let travellers arriving without an eTA into the country, as long as they meet the other requirements to enter Canada (information on requirements on the CIC website). Please remember that it is in your interest to apply for an eTA as soon as you know that you will be travelling to Canada. In most cases, the eTA will be granted within minutes of applying and will be electronically linked to your passport. Once approved, an eTA will be valid for five years, or until your passport expires, whichever comes first. You can make multiple visits to Canada with a valid eTA. For more information, please visit

Did you know?

Canada's population was estimated at 36,048,500 on January 1, 2016. In recent years, about two-thirds of Canada's population growth was due to international migratory increase and the other third was due to natural increase (i.e. the number of births minus the number of deaths). Sources: Statistics Canada.

May Events

Canada House leafA portrait of Joseph Paul by Dana ClaxtonUntil 19 June ¦ The Tremendous Elusive – Emily Carr and the Canadian Imaginary
Canada Gallery, London  ¦ This exhibition pivots on the late career pieces by renowned Canadian artist Emily Carr – generously on loan from the Vancouver Art gallery – and presents them alongside a selection of photographs, paintings, drawings, textile and sculptural works by contemporary artists from across the country drawn from the wider Canada House Collection. Open daily from 11am – 5:45pm.

4 and 21 May ¦ Angela Hewitt
Ilkley, West Yorkshire and Holkham Hall, Norfolk ¦ Angela Hewitt brings her musical artistry to various locations in the UK and performs programmes featuring piano works of JS Bach, Haydn, Scarlatti, among others.

5 – 28 May ¦ The Wildlife Art of Ron Kingswood
Jonathan Cooper Gallery, London ¦ Ontario artist Ron Kingswood displays new bold minimalist works inspired by Canadian landscape and wildlife.

6 – 14 May ¦ Century Song
Salford, Birmingham, London ¦ Volcano Theatre Canada presents Century Song, an exploration of the past 100 years inspired in part by Virginia Woolf’s Orlando and Alice Walker’s In Search of Our Mothers’ Gardens. Starring soprano Neema Bickersteth.

6 May – 5 June ¦ Brighton Fringe
Brighton ¦ A rich mix of comedy acts and theatre from Canada join the wide array of critically acclaimed shows and performers at the 2016 Brighton Fringe.

11 May ¦ Hilarity for Charity
Seven Dials Club, London ¦ Four Canadian comedians headline this event to raise money for two charities supported by the Maple Leaf Trust: the Veterans’ Support Committee and the Canadian Centennial Scholarship Fund Committee.

12 – 22 May ¦ Rae Spoon
Various UK venues ¦ Acclaimed Canadian singer-songwriter Rae Spoon tours UK venues to celebrate the release of their newest album, Armour.

13 – 18 May ¦ Judith Clute: Darkening Garden
Camden Image Gallery, London ¦ Clute advances the theme of the Darkening Garden from its first iteration in 2015. The new etchings and paintings dramatize the feel of being a human animal in this global village we occupy.

14 May ¦ Lakehead University Alumni Meetup
London ¦ A representative from Lakehead University will be visiting to meet alumni for this special event. Final place and time will be confirmed on the event’s Facebook page.

Until 15 May ¦ Electronic Superhighway
Whitechapel Gallery, London ¦ The Whitechapel Gallery’s multimedia exhibition on the impact of technology on art includes the work of Canadian artists Douglas Coupland, Jeremy Bailey and Jon Rafman.

Until 15 May ¦ Tanhauser
Royal Opera House, London ¦ A revival of the critically acclaimed 2010 production of Wagner’s early masterpiece, directed by Tim Albery, with set designs by Canadian Michael Levine.

15 May ¦ Café Canada
Second Cup, London ¦ A monthly café social over board games and maple lattes organized by the Canadian Expat Meetup Group.

17 – 23 May ¦ Canadian Blast
The Green Door Store, Brighton, and venues in London ¦ Canadian Blast returns to the Great Escape Festival, highlighting up-and-coming acts from across the country. There will also be a Canadian lineup at The Water Rats on the 17th and The Forge on the 23rd in London.

19 May ¦ Rugby Canada ‘Long Lunch’
Bengal Clipper, London ¦ A special lunch hosted by Rugby Canada with greats Gareth Rees and Jamie Cudmore before they compete in the London Sevens.

19 May ¦ Attar Project
Cardiff, Wales ¦ Violinist Parmela Attariwalla and tabla musician Shawn Mativetsky perform the Attar Project, a collaboration mixing contemporary music with traditional Indian rhythms.

20 May ¦ Rt Hon Brian Mulroney
House of Lords, London ¦ The Canada-UK Chamber of Commerce hosts its 94th AGM and lunch at the House of Lords with former prime minister Brian Mulroney as guest speaker.

20 May ¦ Louis Lortie:  Piano Recital
Wigmore Hall, London ¦ After his 5 star recital in 2015, the French-Canadian artist returns with another rich programme that includes piano sonatas by Mozart, Beethoven and Brahms.

Until 21 May ¦ David Drebin: Chasing Paradise
Atlas Gallery, London ¦ The first solo exhibition by photographer David Drebin including large-scale city landscapes and staged scenes.

23 May – 4 June ¦ Caroline Tabah: Lights of India
Nehru Centre, London ¦ The photographs of Montreal-based artist, filmmaker and author Caroline Tabah focus on the Lights of India. The exhibition will be opened with a tabla performance by Canadian Shawn Mativetsky. 

26 May ¦ Canadian literature discussion
Waterstones, Trafalgar Square, London ¦ Sunday Times bestselling author Freya North and Canadian writer Sarah Leipciger discuss the literary allure of Canada, and their new novels The Turning Point and The Mountain Can Wait. Tickets required, 6.30pm.

Until 30 May ¦ Hajra Waheed
BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art, Gateshead ¦ Hajhra Waheed's first UK solo exhibition expands her project titled Still Against the Sky, with a series of drawings, collages, videos and photo-based works.

31 May and 1 June ¦ Betroffenheit
Sadler’s Wells, London ¦ The UK premiere of a new choreography by Sadler’s Wells Associate Artist, Crystal Pite.  In this collaborative work with Jonathon Young, Pite touches on themes of loss, trauma, addiction and recovery through a boundary-stretching hybrid of theatre and dance.  The Canadian choreographer was recently presented with the National Dance Award for best modern choreography.

Further Ahead

5 – 11 June ¦ Neil Young
Various UK venues ¦ Legendary Canadian rocker Neil Young tours the UK in June, performing in Glasgow, Belfast, Leeds and London.

8 and 9 June ¦ Beating Retreat
Horse Guards Parade, London ¦ The traditional evening pageant of music and military precision drills and fireworks will this year be celebrating the Commonwealth, in the year of Her Majesty’s 90th birthday.

10 June ¦ 7th Annual Canadian Chief Economists Panel Debate & Lunch
The Grange St Paul’s Hotel, London ¦ The annual Canada-UK Chamber of Commerce event features a panel of economists from Scotiabank, TD Bank Group, National Bank of Canada, Bank of Montreal, CIBC Capital Markets and Royal Bank of Canada.

25 June ¦ Canada Day Cruze
Temple Pier, London ¦ The 10th Canada Day afternoon cruise on the Thames organized by the London Expat Canadian Meetup Group, featuring prizes and games. For a full listing of The London Canadian Expat Meetup Group's upcoming events please check out their home page.

1 July ¦ Maverick Festival
Easton Farm Park, Suffolk ¦ The UK’s North American roots music festival is celebrating Canada day with an all-Canadian programme featuring John Wort Hannam, Christina Martin, Ryan Cook, Bill Wood & The Woodies and the Sultans of String.

7 – 16 July ¦ Needles and Opium
Barbican, London ¦ Boundary-pushing theatre maker Robert Lepage’s play about addiction and the creative drive Needles & Opium imagines a meeting between artist Jean Cocteau and musician Miles Davis, and is staged within a tilting, spinning cube.


For more news of culture and the arts with Canadian connections appearing in the UK check out our Calendar of Events.

Job Opportunities

Canada House, London ¦ For information about working at the High Commission, visit the Job Opportunity page on our website. You can also follow us on LinkedIn for regular updates on new openings at Canada House.

Archive - Canada Plus

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