The Master’s Blog 23
Another Busy Week for The Master
WOODTURNING AT THE HURLINGHAM CLUB: MONDAY 23 APRIL 2018
The Mistress Plumber travels to the magnificent setting of the Hurlingham Club in Fulham this afternoon and enjoys a woodturning demonstration and a delicious afternoon tea hosted by the Mistress Turner. The demonstration shows the production of a candlestick and is an impressive show of the craft of the Turners’ Company.
SHRIEVAL ELECTION RECEPTION: MONDAY 23 APRIL 2018
This year there are three candidates for the position of Non-Aldermanic (Lay) Sheriff of the City of London and tonight I attend a Reception in Carpenters’ Hall to hear one of them, the Hon. Liz Green, Past Master Framework Knitter, talking about her aims, if elected to this ancient post. It is a well-attended event and I meet many people that I have come to know through the Livery circuit. Voting (by Liverymen of the City) for the two shrieval posts will take place at Guildhall on Monday 25 June 2018. The Court of Aldermen’s nomination for the Aldermanic Sheriff is Alderman Vincent Keaveny (whom I met when he was a guest of a Liveryman at the lunch following the Plumbers’ January Court meeting) and the other two candidates for the Lay Sheriff role are Gwen Rhys and Richard Fleck.
PLUMBERS’ COURT MEETING AND LUNCH: TUESDAY 24 APRIL 2018
As Master, I have to chair 4 meetings of the Court during my year in office. Today sees the second of these (almost exactly 6 months after my Installation). The location is Apothecaries’ Hall, reputed to be the oldest surviving Livery Hall in the City. The meeting seems to go well and is followed by a lovely lunch at which the Company welcomes a number of Masters and Clerks of other Livery Companies. The Company’s Curator of Treasures, Liveryman Andrew Hunter-Blair, recently stepped down after 10 years in that post and I present him with a small Plumbers’ silver ladle in appreciation of his diligent work on our behalf. Our guest speaker after lunch is Sheriff Neil Redcliffe and we are delighted that he and his wife, Emma, have been able to fit us into what is a busy schedule supporting the Lord Mayor. Sheriff Redcliffe talks about the powerful work
which the Sheriffs’ and Recorder’s Fund carries out with ex-offenders and I present him with a cheque for the Fund from the Plumbers’ Charitable Trust.
ENGINEERS’ INSTALLATION DINNER: TUESDAY 24 APRIL 2018
There are relatively few occasions when I have official lunch and dinner commitments on the same day, but this is one of them and I travel to Merchant Taylors’ Hall for the Installation Dinner of the Worshipful Company of Engineers. The Plumbers’ Company has developed a close working relationship with the Engineers recently as we are in the process of installing a computer-system originally developed by the newly-installed Master Engineer, Professor David Johnson. On my last visit to Merchant Taylors’ Hall, I spotted a magnificent organ in the gallery of their main room and wondered whether it still played. It does, and it was lovely to hear the organ (with trumpet and some other instruments) being played as the principal guests entered, for the Grace, National Anthem and during the Loving Cup Ceremony.
ENVELOPE STUFFING: WEDNESDAY 25 APRIL 2018
As a result of decisions taken at Court yesterday, there is a full-scale mailout (about changes to data protection regulations) to the Livery today and I volunteer to join the small office team to assist in the process. In addition to the information about data privacy and security, we are issuing copies of the 2017 Annual Review and promotional leaflets for the forthcoming Plumbers’ Cricket Match and our Master’s Weekend in Edinburgh. There is one of those moments of satisfaction (and relief) when the Clerk’s Assistant, Sharon, and I deliver the last bundle of stuffed envelopes to the local Post Office.
PAVIOR’S SPRING LIVERY DINNER: WEDNESDAY 25 APRIL 2018
I travel to Fishmongers’ Hall on London Bridge (and on the banks of the Thames) this evening for the Paviors’ Company Spring Livery Dinner. Attended by over 200 Liverymen and guests, this is an excellent occasion and I am joined as a guest by the Master Joiner and Ceiler and the Master Chartered Surveyor, both of whom I now know well through the Livery circuit. It is an honour to be present when past Lord Mayor, Sir Michael Bear (a Past Master Pavior) presents the company with his Shrieval Badge and Chain. Sir Michael explains that his badge (the first three-dimensional badge in the City) had been designed by his wife, Lady Barbara and includes images representing, among other things, his school and his university set within images of scaffolding poles.
TOUR OF LLOYDS’ BUILDING AND LUNCH: THURSDAY 26 APRIL 2018
In what she describes as the most fascinating visit of the year so far, the Mistress Plumber is part of a small group of Consorts today as she visits the Lloyds’ Building in London. As well as hearing the history of this building and watching the Lloyds’ market at work she is shown features such as the Lutine Bell (formerly rung when a ship sank). The visit, which has been arranged by the Mistress Painter and Stainer (whose husband works at Lloyds) is followed by a lunch and tour of Painters’ Hall.