Tonight it was my pleasure to chair the annual meeting of Common Hall at Cutlers' Hall. Common Hall is, effectively, the Company's AGM, where all liverymen are invited to attend. This is the main opportunity for liverymen to discuss any matters they wish to raise with the Master, Wardens, Court Assistants and their fellow liverymen.
Proceedings commenced with the Company Prayer, after which the Upper Warden reported on the Company Accounts and Finances and Hon. Secretary to the Trustees, Court Assistant Alan Dodd reported on the finances of the Charitable Trusts. It was very pleasing to see the accounts for the year just closed being presented to Common Hall and the Upper Warden was congratulated for making this happen for the first time in many years. Common Hall noted the healthy financial position of the Company and the Charitable Trusts and thanks were extended to all involved in maintaining this position.
It was noted that the Charity of the Year for 2019/20 was YouthBuildUK and the voting process for the Charity of the Year 2020/21 was outlined by Court Assistant Alan Dodd.
The three new Court Assistants, Tom Christopherson, Alan Dodd and David White introduced themselves to their fellow liverymen, givng a short resumé of themselves. Past Master David Szymanski gave an update on the Strategic Review and Past Master Piers Nicholson updated Common Hall on his new Heritage Sun Dial Project in Fleet Street.
Following an open forum for discussion there was a champagne reception with canapés prior to dinner.
As has become the custom, the seating was allocated to ensure that all Liverymen were given the opportunity to meet with Members of the Court. We started with smoked salmon, atlantic prawns and crême fraiche, followed by Fillet Steak Waterloo with paté and vegetables and vanilla panna cotta for dessert. The Chairman of the Wine Committee had reserved some extra special red wines for us tonight, which were much appreciated by all.
I was pleased to announce the winner of the poll for Charity of the Year 2020/21, which was St Edmunds, an educational establishment that provides vocational training for young people excluded from mainstream education.
We all retired downstairs for a stirrup cup, coffee and cheese and more good fellowship to end another wonderful Tyler and Bricklayer event.