Final speaker confirmed for Chamber’s EU debate

Barrister and former MP Ken Hind is the final speaker confirmed for the North & Western Lancashire Chamber of Commerce’s EU debate next month.

Held at Preston’s College lecture theatre on Friday, May 20 (10am-noon), Mr Hind will join Sajjad Karim MEP in backing the case for the UK to remain in the EU.

Presenting the case for the ‘better off out’ campaign will be Paul Nuttall MEP, the UKIP deputy leader, and businessman Alan Halsall, ahead of the referendum on June 23.

Having graduated in Law at the University of Leeds in 1971, Mr Hind qualified as a barrister at Gray’s Inn two years later.

He was elected as a Conservative Member of Parliament for West Lancashire in 1983, a post he held for nine years, in which time he worked as a Parliamentary Private Secretary to: the Minister for Defence Procurement; the Minister for Small Business at the Department of Employment; the Minister for Security at the Northern Ireland Office; and the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland.

Mr Hind returned to legal practise in London and Liverpool Chambers in the 1990s before being elected as a councillor for Ribble Valley Borough Council’s Dilworth ward; he now serves as the chairman of Audit and Accounts on the Borough Council.

He will speak alongside Mr Karim, who was the first British Muslim elected to the European Parliament in 2004, originally as a Liberal Democrat, before switching to the Conservative Party and being re-elected in June 2009.

Debating the other perspective is Mr Nuttall, who has been second in command to Nigel Farage since 2010. He has been a member of the European Parliament for the North West since 2009.

He will be joined by Mr Halsall, who started his professional life as a qualified lawyer before joining his family’s toy company, Halsalls. He also rescued the Silver Cross pram company from receivership and, as chairman, turned it into a multi-million pound iconic British brand.

Chamber deputy chief executive, Hugh Evans, said: “This is a free event and one I would urge business people with an interest in the referendum to attend.

“The referendum is one of the biggest decisions the UK will make for a generation or more and, as a result, voters need to hear both sides of the story before going to the polls.”

Anyone interested in attending should email chamberevents@lancschamber.co.uk for details.

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