The Garden of Remembrance

Today marked the opening of the Garden of Remembrance at St Pauls Cathedral. The Civic Team, Masters and representatives from City organisations attended a Service to mark the opening of the Garden of Remembrance in the centennial year of the end of World War 1.

Not only was every Master present, but also Yeomen Warders from the Tower of London, Chelsea Pensioners, the Standards of the Royal British Legion, choirs from the City of London Boys and Girls Schools and members of the City of London Police and First Responders.  

The Service was led by the Dean of St Pauls, Dr David Ison and began with the singing of Praise my Soul, the King of Heaven.  This was followed by an Address by the Lord Mayor and prayers.

The Exhortation was followed by the Last Post and the Two Minute Silence, then Reveille.

The cross laying was led by the Lord and Lady Mayoress, the Sheriffs, City representatives and then Livery Masters.  We had been briefed by a Sergeant Major of the Grenadier Guards who had instructed us to march, in sixes, to our place, lay the cross and then move away.  As number 37 in the order of precedence I had the “privilege” of leading my group of Masters and thankfully all went well!

After the National Anthem, we all dispersed.  Many to take photographs of the crosses as a memory of this special occasion.

After the service I joined other Tylers and Bricklayers at the Civic Lunch of Vintry and Dowgate Ward for a convivial lunch.

Livery Collaboration

The Upper Warden and I attended a briefing on the Pan Livery Collaboration initiative which began nearly two years ago.

Whilst any work on Philanthropy has been halted, the Communications Working Group have been busy undertaking surveys.  The most positive news is that just under £67m is given away by the Liveries annually in charitable giving.

Beyond the Deepening Shadow

After the Briefing the Upper Warden, our Consorts and I visited the Tower of London to see the 10,000 flames alight in the Moat, which forms part of the commemorations of the centenary of Armistice Day in 1918.

The Inner Workings of the Company

As Master it is important that the inner workings of the Company run smoothly, and this week I attended meetings of the Finance Committee and Communications Committee. It is important also that Liverymen from the finance sector play an active role in advising us the state of the stock market and that our finances are in good order.  Our Learned Clerk runs the Company with absolute efficiency and is to be thanked for all his hard work on our behalf.

The Communications Committee’s remit includes events, membership and promotion of the Company via its newsletters, website and social media.  During our meeting plans were made for the next newsletter, a review of the website and events over the current Livery year.

After the meeting closed, the Wardens, Clerk and I interviewed two potential candidates for the Freedom of the Company.

Brick Awards

Malcolm and I were invited to attend the annual Brick Awards organised by the Brick Development Association at the Hilton on Park Lane.

This was very much an industry occasion and I was delighted to catch up with a colleague from the trade association world and to meet many people from the brick industry.

Jon Culshaw was the MC for the evening and his professional approach ensured a successful evening.

We were delighted that Liveryman Ian Wilson, from Anglian Brickworks Ltd won four awards, including the Supreme Award for work at Storey’s Community Centre in Cambridge.

A new Lord Mayor of the City of London

On Friday, 9 November the City was preparing for the Lord Mayor’s Show, but before that the Installation of the new Lord Mayor Peter Estlin took place in a Silent Ceremony in Guildhall.

The ceremony dates back over 800 years and follows the same time table year after year.  I was fortunate to be sitting directly behind the new Lord Mayor’s chair so was able to see the hand over process.

The only words spoken are those of the new Lord Mayor as he swears an oath of office.  The outgoing mayor removes his tricorn hat and seconds later the new Lord Mayor places his hat on his head, signalling the transfer of mayoralty.

There follows a transfer of all the elements of the City by touching of symbols reflecting all elements of the Corporation before the new Lord Mayor leaves to the sound of heralds playing.