No ordinary dinners.

I have attended 2 livery dinners in the last 2 weeks and I thought a little post about these wonderful institutions might be of interest.  Livery companies were set up in the middle ages to regulate trade carried out in the City of London.  By being a liveryman of a company you had been assessed and passed as a master of your craft… the original trade association.  These days the companies represent various industries and raise a huge amount of money for charity, awards and apprenticeships.  I am a member of the Coach Makers and Coach Harness Makers livery a connection that goes back to my grandfathers motor coach company Windsorian Coaches.  Last week was our Aerospace Industry Dinner, hosted by our new Master Richard Charlesworth MVO.

Taking place in the wonderful Clothworker’s Hall in London, the event’s Guest of Honour, Group Captain Nikki Thomas, OBE RAF, regaled us with her fascinating experiences as a female commander in a traditionally male environment.

The previous week I had been invited to the Apothecaries court dinner at their amazing 1670’s hall…the atmosphere was incredible.  My host Dr Jonathan Holliday had been Her Majesty’s physician in Windsor and is to be Master in 2 years it was as British an evening as you could ever imagine with everyone in white tie and mess dress and evoked a more flamboyant age.

I take pride in being involved in events like these because they are a celebration of organisations of historical importance, who have become a very important charitable organisation.

I have a passion for Education and it is an honour to have this heritage that dates back hundreds of years, yet still essential as it is still closely involved with our modern day professions and even the perpetuation of crafts such as coach building. I am fascinated by the fact that, whilst in a 21st Century world filled with fast paced innovation and a forever evolving technology, there’s still much to learn from the value and art of skills that have been around since the 17th Century.

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