Makers of Playing Cards' Installation Banquet

Thursday 6th December 2018

Almost exactly six months in to my year of office I have had the pleasure of attending many fine dinners and banquets representing the Tobacco Pipe Makers. This particular occasion at Mansion House was by any measure an exceptional evening.

The guests were first greeted and guarded by the Company of Pikemen and Musketeers in full 17th Century uniform and weaponry. The new Master, Mark Winston, and his Mistress then welcomed us to a fine champagne reception attended by 300 Company members and their guests. The Eqyptian Hall was groaning with silverware and fabulous floral decoration that included pictorialised playing cards for further adornment. The meal was lavish, the wines exquisite and coffee was attended by edible playing cards which were made of painted white chocolate. Music played throughout being provided by The Militaire Orchestra concluding with The Post Horn Galop; always a winner at such occasions.

We heard excellent speeches form the Master and The Lord Mayor but plaudits go to the Guest Speaker, Peter Williamson, the astronomer and broadcaster. A personal friend of the Master, his speech focused on the upcoming 50th anniversary of the first successful manned lunar mission. The Apollo 11 Lunar Module landed on the moon on 20th July 1969 and Peter provided his wonderful insights and observations about the historic achievment to a rapt audience.

The Master of the Makers of Playing Cards played a winning hand...