McCanns Strange Connections: Another British Consul Resigns
BRITISH CONSUL Celia Edwards has left her post after just one year to return to the UK because of family reasons and to pursue her legal career.
The former consul, who was also Head of Post, said: “It has been a good and challenging year for Portimão, where I have dealt with high profile cases and also been involved in the merger of the consular operations in Portugal and Spain into a single entity.”
The biggest high profile event Celia Edwards faced in her one-year tenure was helping to deal with many aspects of the case of missing Madeleine McCann and the subsequent naming of Gerry and Kate McCann as arguidos or suspects in her disappearance.
A spokesman from the British Embassy told The Resident: “We can confirm that Celia has resigned from her post for personal reasons.
“Staff at the consulate in Portimão will be handling everything until a new Head of Post is found. Assistance and support for British persons both living and holidaying in the Algarve will continue as normal”
In an email to business people in the Algarve, Celia Edwards gave an insight into her decision: “I have also been away from my family, who remained in London throughout my year in post.”
Celia stood down from her post on Monday and a spokesman from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office confirmed that the British Embassy was now actively recruiting a replacement for the Consulate in Portimão.
In a statement issued by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, the British Embassy said: “We are grateful for Celia Edwards’ contribution to the consulate and for the work she did in the Algarve over the past year.”
Source: Portugal Resident
From Gazeta Digital by Paulo Reis 27.6.08
Celia Edwards, British consul in Algarve, resigned from the Foreign Office, less than one year after replacing Bill Henderson (who retired, on July 31, 2007). Celia Edwards resignation will be effective from July 1. The Foreign Office confirmed already the resignation and referred that the decision was taken for personal reasons. Celia Edwards is the fifth Foreign Office representative to leave the Government, after being in charge of the diplomatic support and contacts with the Media, for the parents of Madeleine McCann, in Portugal.
John Buck, the UK Ambassador in Lisbon, left the Diplomatic Service on September 10, 2007, and was replaced by Alexander Ellis, a former adviser with the office of EU Commission President Durão Barroso. Sheree Dodd and Clarence Mitchell were the first two Foreign Office representatives sent to Algarve, after Madeleine McCann disappeared. Both left their government jobs: Clarence Mitchell became the McCann spokesman and Sheree Dodd was hired as Press Adviser to Michael Martin, the House of Commons Speaker.