Our Autumn Livery Dinner, where our spouses were also welcome to attend, was held this year at Clothworkers’ Hall, which we have not visited since 2011. The Clothworkers are the twelfth Company in order of precedence and this Hall, their third, was built in 1953. As well being very grand inside, it also holds a number valuable and attractive eighteenth century Belgian tapestries, which are indicative of their support for the textiles trade.
After a witty Grace from the Chaplain, 126 of us heard from a representative from the Education Endowment Foundation charity. This charity is supported by our charitable trust and we heard how the money we donate has helped fund research into the most effective way of providing maths education to primary school children. The final report on this work is expected shortly.
The meal, wine and service were excellent throughout and our Court Assistant Petrea Simmons then spoke to welcome out guests, who include the Master Waterman and the Master Educator. The latter, Dr Lis Goodwin, was once in charge of education at the IFoA so her presence was particularly apt.
Our principal guest was Baroness Arbuthnot of Edron who, as Judge Emma Arbuthnot, is the Chief Magistrate for England and Wales. She spoke humorously, covering a number of anecdotes from her career.
The Master’s response, the final speech, was equally interesting and, in particular, he explained his ideas for attracting new younger members to the Company. He also mentioned that the “Two Nicks” City charity walk had raised over £33,000 for good causes.
Another highlight of the evening was our Past Master Peter Thompson’s piano playing. We are very fortunate in being able to call on one of our own to be in charge of the music and his playing of the march Scipio to the entering procession and then his medley of popular tunes when we drank the “loving cup” resulted in applause form the diners!
The Master and his wife Susie looked very smart!