Cutlers' 600th Anniversary Service and Reception

Monday 5th December 2016

Once again I was floored by another stunning place I'd never seen before. This time it was at St. Bartholomew's the Great near the eponymous hospital. The Cutlers were commemorating the 600th anniversary of their first charter, the only one issued by Henry V! The church is a rare survivor - 300 years older than the aforementioned charter, it survived the reformation, the Great Fire and the Blitz! The Norman interior is intact and it was an honour to be allocated a pair of seats. Sadly the Clerk couldn't make it, but the Mistress, who was planning to wait in a tea shop, could (we were on to dinner afterwards so all togged up in white tie..). The service was very, very special - a recreation of a mass that would have been recognised by the first Master in 1416.. a long choral and clergy procession lead by some of the most viscous insense wafted from a burner I can recall, a fine choir and a reading of part of the original charter, initially in Latin, read by the Master. As far as I could tell, most of the Livery were in attendance and were suitably impressed - it was very special. Afterwards a reception had been organised in the Old Bailey with entrance via the rarely used Great Doors off the street - we had to pop in for one (or two) glasses, but couldn't stay long as we were due at Mansion House shortly thereafter...