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- Category: Latest News
Christmas Carols by St Paul's Cathedral choir - an ideal Christmas present
Carols with St Paul's Cathedral Choir, in partnership with Classic FM and Decca Classics, is about to be released. St Paul's hopes that "Carol of the Bells" will become the Christmas No 1. Please share this with your family, friends and contacts to help St Paul's. The more pre-orders they get, the greater the chance of the Cathedral Choir making a chart appearance at the start of December, which will raise the profile of the Choir and its work. The disc is available for pre-order now.
- Category: Latest News
Shrievalty June 2016
The Court of Aldermen has shared with the Livery that it is supporting Alderman Peter Estlin, a member of our Court, for election as one of two Aldermanic Sheriffs in June 2016.
- Category: Latest News
SPECIAL PROJECT FOR 2014/2015 – Support for MyBnk – How you can help
For 2014/2015 the Trustees have decided to refocus CALC’s giving so as to make a greater impact to a chosen charity both financially and Member support and they have chosen MyBnk from a list of charities nominated by Liverymen. MyBnk delivers financial and enterprise education programmes directly to young people aged 11 to 25 in schools and youth organisations.
Support – In 2013/14 a grant of £50,000 has been awarded to
- fund the post of one new MyBnk Education Officer who will deliver 500 hours of education programmes to 3,500 young people and
- enable MyBnk to deliver financial literacy projects to 8 new secondary schools
Subject to annual review, increased funding will be offered for a further 2 years
How Members can help
- As ‘Ambassadors’ - This link http://mybnk.org/workwithus/request-a-session/ connects to the MyBnk web site where more information can be found about its operations and to a form that Members may complete to recommend schools within London and the Home Counties to take up CALC funded programmes. The area will be extended in later years and research need not be limited to the South East.
- As mentors – Three Liverymen are already acting as mentors to young entrepreneurs
- As trainers – Liverymen as well qualified to provide training and advice to MyBnk staff
- Category: Dinner Reports
Annual Banquet - Mansion House - 1 July 2015
It is always a great privilege for Livery Companies to be given permission to use the home of The Lord Mayor for their banquets. There was a time some years ago now, when the low numbers attending our own dinner nearly resulted in our having to “share” the facilities with another Livery Company! How times have changed and our banquet on 1st July was a “sell-out” with some 230 members and guests filling the magnificent Egyptian Hall.
As you approach the Mansion House, it always seems a bit “low key” to find that the entrance is rather a humble doorway in Walbrook, not some grand entrance at the front. In fact the Walbrook Entrance was originally designed as an eight-stall stable and coach house, though it was never used for that purpose! The truth is that in 1846, James Bunting, an architect working for the City of London Corporation, was asked to design a new entrance at the side of the building so that the Lord Mayor could come and go without being in full view of the general public!
With such a humble entrance, to any guest coming to the Mansion House for the first time, the “wow factor” really arrives as you climb the staircase and arrive on the first floor to be received in The Salon and Parlour by the Master, Mr David Illingworth, Wardens and their “ladies” and to be served with a welcome drink. Nothing however prepares even the “hardy annuals” for the gong announcing dinner and finally the entrance into the magnificent Egyptian Hall, strangely named as it is based on designs by the classical Roman architect Vitruvius of Roman buildings in Egypt! Surrounded by magnificent Mansion House “plate”, the setting is “fit for a king”!
As sometimes happens, the Lord Mayor was unable to attend our banquet, but our “host” for the evening was his “locum tenens”, Alderman and Sherriff Dr Andrew Parmley; we were also pleased to welcome the Lay Sherriff, Fiona Adler. There were many other distinguished guests, including the Master Merchant Taylor, Mr Peter Watkins and the Master Horner, Mr Raymond Layard. What makes a banquet “special” is, of course, not the delicious food and wine – a brilliant Chateau Talaise from Bordeaux! – but the quality of the proposals and responses to the various “toasts” – or rather those who carry out that function. The toast to the Lord Mayor, the City Corporation and the Sheriffs, proposed by the Master was preceded by his presenting a cheque from our Charitable Funds – CALC – to Alderman Andrew Parmley. The response was a surprise coming in the form of a “double act” with both Sheriffs not quite doing a “two Ronnies” but certainly entertaining us in an unusual way, with some of their experiences during their term of office. The Master’s other responsibility is to hand over the Sword of Honour to the outstanding Officer of the year from the Honourable Artillery Company, which we sponsor, and Lt Stuart Bedford duly came forward to be presented with this honour. In proposing the toast of the Guests, the Senior Warden – or Master Elect - is always on his best behaviour at this stage, knowing that he might be at the top table before long! He gave a warm welcome to those mentioned above and to our principal guest, Mrs Sue Marks.
Mrs Marks has had a varied career, since reading Philosophy, Politics and Economics at Jesus College, Oxford – where she won Blues for rowing and athletics. She enjoyed a successful career in international finance in the City, before following in the footsteps her grandfather, two uncles and two aunts in “switching” to the teaching profession. With time spent at St George’s College, Weybridge and Tormead School, Guildford, she was appointed Headmistress at Withington Girl’s School in 2010. Looking at the school’s academic records, it was not surprising to hear her comments supporting single-sex education. “Our main aim is to provide students with the best possible preparation for adult life…..” She is a firm believer in the value of a good education and the need for continuing training even after leaving school and on into the “professional” world. We were privileged to listen to such an accomplished speaker and “clearly a lady to watch.
With The London Banqueting Ensemble “bringing the house down” with their rendering of The Post Horn Gallop – this was an evening to remember.
- Category: Dinner Reports
Winter Dinner - 4 February 2015
A full house of over one hundred and fifty attended the Winter Dinner. Master David Illingworth welcomed us all and, referring to his theme of integrity, commented that there should be no gap between what we say, believe and do. Our guest speaker was Ms Helena Morrissey CBE, CEO of Newton Investment Managers, Chair of the Investment Management Association and founder of the 30% Club, which aims, through voluntary, business-led change, to achieve 30% of women on UK corporate boards. In an inspiring speech on trust and integrity, Helena reminded us that trust is a social and moral issue that requires us all to look at our values. Our aim should not be short-term survival, but long-term revival. An organisation’s culture needs to allow people to stop and think, to use their heads and their hearts. For Helena, people and principles need to be in place first and, if you have those right, the result will be a trusted and trustworthy business.
Earlier in the evening, Junior Warden, Mike Jeans had welcomed four new liverymen clothed that day, Anthony Carey, Simon Collins, Robin Fieth and Paul von der Heyde. Senior Warden Mark Spofforth then welcomed our guests and in so doing advised us that the market penetration of ICAEW Members as Masters of Livery Companies this year exceeds 20%. He was delighted that seven of them had been able to join us. Then, after we had all agreed that the food was excellent, our Senior Warden confessed that our chef that evening was a member of the ubiquitous Spofforth clan!
I asked those sitting near me what were their highlights of the evening. For my two guests, it was the privilege of hearing Helena Morrissey speak, the good food and conversation and the relief of successfully negotiating the Loving Cup challenge! For Stuart Hancock, one of our few Welsh-based liverymen, it was seeing the panels in the Banqueting Hall which had been painted by Sir Frank Brangwyn, after whom Swansea’s Brangwyn Hall had been named. For liveryman David Walker, hotfoot from York, ‘The dinner encapsulated why us “out of town” Members make the effort and go to the expense of attending. Stunning venue, excellent food and wine, a great way to entertain but also to catch up with old friends – and with history and purpose thrown in as well. The winter dinner had all of the above.’
It had indeed been an evening of percentages – the 30% Club, 20% market penetration and, above all, a 100% success.
- Category: Dinner Reports
A warm spring evening saw 140 members and guests assemble at Saddlers Hall for the spring dinner. The clement weather led to some expressing disappointment that the reception was inside the fourth hall that the Saddlers have built in Gutter Lane. The first, built in 1393, was destroyed in the Great Fire, the second also succumbed to flames in 1821 (although by this time fire insurance had been invented which eased the financial pain of re-building). The third hall was destroyed during the Blitz with the consequence that the current, beautiful, hall is relatively modern.
Fortified by a glass of bubbly at the convivial reception, we braced ourselves for Common Hall which in fact was over almost before it started with the Master claiming the record for the shortest ever Annual General Meeting! An excellent meal of salmon and venison followed although initially some of us, perhaps with limited culinary knowledge, expressed anxiety about the unfamiliar menu description of dessert as Sussex Pond Pudding, which, of course, proved to be totally unfounded.
The assembled company replete, the Junior Warden, Mike Jeans, formally introduced the four new livery members who had been clothed at the Court Meeting earlier: David Allen, Liz Rylatt, Rod Sellers, and David Adams.
The Senior Warden, Mark Spofforth, then rose to welcome all our guests, mentioning individually the five Masters of fellow Livery Companies in attendance and the guest speaker, Gareth Davis. Gareth spent 35 years at Imperial Tobacco and was ranked 13th best performing CEO in the world by the Harvard Business Review. He also courted controversy by holding three chairmanships at the same time. Gareth’s erudite response to the toast was wide ranging. He began by commenting that the sung grace had been performed by the worst choir he had ever heard then went on to reveal his 12 rules for good leadership which were poignant and illuminating as well as giving us an insight into some of the reasons for his success in business. However it was perhaps rule 12 that most of us remembered as it is “most of all have fun”. Like all good speakers he finished on a high with an amusing anecdote about our wildest dreams.
The Master then presented a ceremonial sword to the Harrow and Wembley Sea Cadets which was accepted on their behalf by Petty Officer Richard Crick. The formalities were concluded by the Master reminding us of, and encouraging our participation in, forthcoming events. We finally retired for a Stirrup Cup and tried to remember the 12 rules.
- Category: Other Livery Events
Lord Mayor’s Show 2014
With conditions drier than usual, the Master and Clerk, supported by the “rookie”, Court Assistant Graeme Gordon, who held the Company banner, represented the Company in the Lord Mayor’s Show, as part of the Modern Livery Companies’ float. The float comprised 24 Modern Companies and was spearheaded by a Rapid Response Fire Engine provided by the Firefighters’ Company, an Arriva Bus (with a jazz band on top) and backed up by a Combine Harvester provided by the Farmers’ Company. Security was tighter than ever before and there was a strong police and military presence. With our float being 100 in a parade entry of 154, there was a long wait to get started, but once we moved, the walk to the end of Fleet Street seemed to go like a flash. Lunch comprised the usual bubbly and sandwiches on HQS Wellington and there was a massive turnout of spectators throughout the Show, which made it a most successful event.