Thursday, 26 January 2017

95. Private Luncheon with the Lady Mayoress

Fiona was invited earlier this week to a private luncheon with the Lady Mayoress in her private quarters at the Mansion House. Guests included Consorts from other livery companies and ladies associated with the Lady Mayoress during her various roles in the City.

After an excellent lunch, the guests were taken on a private tour of the gold and silver plate collection housed in the Mansion House. Many believe this to be one of the finest collections in the world.

Fiona tells me that this was an excellent lunch with opportunity to meet others from a variety of roles in the City. Many thanks to the Lady Mayoress for organizing the event.

Photographs show Fiona on her way to the Mansion House (proudly wearing her badge of office), the luncheon table and the gold & silver collection. 

94. United Guilds’ Service and Lunch

This Service, in St Paul’s Cathedral will be held on Friday 31st March and I hope that many of you will attend.

The origins of the Service go back to the dark days of the Second World War when the Twelve Great Companies decided, in 1943, to hold a service in St Paul’s to lift the spirit of the City following the devastation of the blitz – the Service has been held every year since. It is a colourful event with all 110 Companies represented and a procession of Masters and Prime Wardens in full regalia.

Following the Service we have organized a lunch in Member’s dining Room at Guildhall at a cost of £75.

Members of the Company and their partners are cordially invited to both events, but space is limited and you should contact the Clerk to apply for tickets without delay.

Fiona and I look forward to seeing you there.

Tuesday, 24 January 2017

93. Are you a School Governor?

As many of you will know that a key part of the work of our charity (The Water Conservation Trust), is working with schools to promote an understanding and awareness of the environment.

We have special relationships with a number of schools where we have provided financial and technical input to great effect. The Trust is keen to expand this work and we are trying to build a register of our Members and their partners who are School Governors in an attempt to build a core of skills and the ability to exchange experience and advice.

Court Assistant Rob Casey is leading this initiative – he is an active School Governor of the Hugh Myddelton School in Islington. He would love to hear from you if you are a Governor – he can be contacted by email at:

Monday, 23 January 2017

92. More Photographs of the Myddelton Lunch

We have so many great images of the Myddelton Lunch that I thought I would share a few more with you.

The first shows the Master and Thames, Fleet and Walbrook Wardens lining up to greet everyone before lunch. The second shows Fiona with some of the guests at the pre-lunch reception. The third shows,the Master, Wardens, Lord Mayor and Principal Guests before processing into lunch. The fourth shows the Master speaking after lunch (he must have said something funny!) and the fifth shows the Master leaving the Egyptian Room in the Mansion House after lunch.

91. Colin Bland – Honorary Liveryman

Colin Bland has a long and successful history with the Worshipful Company of Water Conservators. He was first elected as a Court Assistant in 1989, was elected as Walbrook  Warden in April 1995 and was installed as Master on 1st July 1998.
Following a very successful year as Master, he continued to give his time unswervingly for the Company. He edited the Company newsletter (The Conservator) for many many years and served as Chairman of both the Past Master’s Committee and our charity, The Water Conservation Trust, until his retirement in the autumn of 2016.

In recognition of this unique service, the Court at its meeting in December 2016, unanimously agreed to Colin’s appointment as an Honorary Liveryman of the Company.

It was with very great pleasure that I was able to read this commendation at our Myddelton Lunch and to present Colin with his framed certificate in the presence of the Lord Mayor and Colin’s wife, son and daughter.

A very special occasion.

Photographs show Colin and his family and the presentation of his certificate.

90. Myddelton Lunch 2017

The Myddelton Lunch  this year was held in the prestigious Mansion House and attracted over 170 attendees – a magnificent turnout. We were honoured by the presence of the Lord Mayor and Lady Mayoress –particulalry poignant because the Lord Mayor is a Member of our own Company.

The lunch is named after Sir Hugh Myddelton, who brought fresh drinking water to London by constructing the New River, which was completed in 1613. Our Company has a close relationship with the Hugh Myddelton School in Islington and Court Assistant Rob Casey (who is a Governor of the school) arranged for a group of pupils to form a guard of honour for the Lord Mayor on his arrival and they played a specially written piece of music on their wide range of musical instruments.

After an excellent lunch in the beautiful Egyptian Room, the formal proceedings began. Following on from the loyal toast and a toast to the Lord Mayor, the Master took the opportunity to welcome the guests and explain what a unique Lord Mayor we have this year – he comes from an unusual background being both an accomplished musician and teacher. Prior to proposing a toast to the guests, the Master presented the Lord Mayor with a cheque for £1,000
in support of his three charities for the year, and a leather covered copy of the Company’s recently published History for the Period 2000-2015.

In response, the Lord Mayor amusingly recounted some of his experiences so far and presented the Master with a set of enscribed coasters and the Clerk, Ralph Riley, with a crested spoon. He concluded with a toast to the Company coupled with the name of the Master.

In responding the Master fulfilled two very pleasant tasks. The first was to present Past Master Colin Bland with his Certificate of Honorary Liveryman (see blog no 91 for further details of this) and the second was to present four of the Company’s prize winning sponsored post graduates with certificates and engraved glass jugs.

Following the 100 Club draw, where our Clerk (Ralph Riley) won the first prize of £500, the Master drew proceedings to a close. A departing collection in support of Treloars raised some £1,270 – thank you to everyone who contributed so generously.

A very successful and high quality event which was thoroughly enjoyed by everyone present. Many thanks to Ralph Riley for his skillful preparation and organization of this prestigious event. (Photographs show the Lord Mayor with pupils from Hugh Myddelton School, the Master, Clerk & Bailiff, over 170 Members and guests in the Egyptian Room,  presentation of gift to the Lord Mayor and the Lord Mayor responding.)

Friday, 20 January 2017

89. The Myddelton Church Service

Each year, before the Myddelton Lunch, the Company organizes a Church Service for the re-dedication of the Livery. The service is in celebration of the granting of Livery status to the Company in the year 2000.

This year, the Service was held at St Michael’s Church in Cornhill and was led by our Chaplain, the Revd Rose Hudson-Wilkin who was supported by the Rector of St Michael’s, the Rt Revd Dr Stephen Platten. The Service was well attended by Members and their guests and the Master participated by reading the lesson and presenting the Wardens and Members for the act of re-dedication.

Following the Service, the Master, Wardens, Past Masters and Members of the Court processed in full regalia to the Mansion House. This caused considerable interest from passers-by who were intrigued by the whole event!

Photographs show the interior of the Church, the Chaplain, and the Master, Wardens, Past Masters and Court Members on the steps of the Church following the Service.

Wednesday, 18 January 2017

88. Perspectives

Many of you will recall that during his year as Master, Ivor Richards launched the idea of producing a series of “Perspectives” written by Members of our Company and published on our website.

Each Perspective can be a personal view on a water or environmental related topic, a technical appraisal or a recollection of events past or opportunities for the future. A number of perspectives were loaded onto our website and can be seen in a specially identified and collated section – they are worth a read.

Ivor has expressed his disappointment to me that more members haven’t taken pen to paper, so I am writing this blog to encourage you to “have a go”.

If you aren’t sure if your chosen subject is relevant or you need some help with putting something together, Ivor would welcome you making contact with him at:

Monday, 9 January 2017

87. Lord Mayor's Children's Party

Each year the Lord Mayor and the Lady Mayoress host a children's party in the Mansion House - this year the party was held during the afternoon of Saturday 7th January.

Children or grandchildren of Livery Company Master's are invited to attend the fancy dress party. The criteria is that they must be between the ages of 6 and 9 and that meant that three of my grandchildren (Harry, Georgie and Sam) were eligible to attend.

They tell me they had a great time and it was "posher than any other party they have attended"!

Many thanks to the Lord Mayor and Lady Mayoress for hosting this great event - all the children will remember it for a very long time.

Photograph shows Harry, Georgie and Sam meeting the Lord Mayor and Sheriffs at the entrance to the Egyptian Room in the Mansion House.

Friday, 6 January 2017

86. Farewell Sydney

Fiona and I are flying out of Sydney tomorrow after a fantastic New Year Celebration  in the City.

For those of you who have been to Sydney, you will know that it is a fabulous City based around a very extensive harbour with a strong emphasis on water and protection of the environment. If you haven't yet had the opportunity to visit the City, I recommend that you add it to your "bucket list" - you won't be disappointed!

Photographs show the iconic Opera House glistening in the sunlight and the sunset over the City at the end of another glorious day.

Sunday, 1 January 2017

85. Church Service Preceding the Myddelton Lunch

I am delighted that we have record numbers attending our Myddelton Lunch in The Mansion House on 19th January. As I am sure you know this Annual Lunch celebrates the Granting of Livery to our Company in the year 2000.

Immediately preceding the lunch there will be a short divine service led by our Chaplain (Rev Rose Hudson-Wilkin) in St Michael's Church, Cornhill where we will be rededicating the Company Cross. The service will commence at 11.20 am, after which the Master, Wardens and Members of the Court will process in their regalia to The Mansion House.

I hope that as many of you as possible (together with your guests) will join us at this service.