Election Court & Luncheon – Watermen’s Hall

Tuesday 22nd March 2022

This was my third (and penultimate) Court meeting as Master, and I was delighted that we were able to install Professor Mallory Factor as a new Court Assistant, and to approve the appointment of Sue Curran who will, hopefully, join the Court at our next meeting. We also installed 4 new Freemen – Shem Baldeosingh, Richard Gray and Meena and Tom Heath, who became the first mother and son to be installed on the same day. However, as I pointed out at lunch, and with a nod to my own mother who has been a Liveryman since 2009, they are not the first mother and son to be members of the Company. I was thrilled to also install Hilary Adler as an Honorary Freeman – the Adler family runs through the DNA of our Company, and we are pleased to recognise formally Hilary’s contribution. Importantly, we elected our new Master and Wardens – Paul Taberer will be an excellent Master, taking over the role on 1 June, and I’m sure that Elise, Henry, Tony, and our newest Warden, Jacqueline, will provide him with all of the support that he needs. Finally, and even more importantly, we approved the appointment of the Company Officials for the coming year. The whole team do a fantastic job running the Company and supporting the Master throughout the year, and we are extremely grateful that they have each agreed to continue in their roles; thank you to Sandra, Ian, Mark, Alan and David.

At the lunch that followed, we were joined by the Master Watermen and Lightermen, Derek Mann, who was great company. Past Master Richard Tranter presented pipes, hand-made by him, to four of our Past Masters and to our Honorary Chaplain. These really were Tours de Force – fantastic examples of the Pipemakers craft, and each one uniquely designed for their recipient – many thanks Richard. Catherine, the Mistress, had earlier organised a tour of the Mithraeum for the Court spouses. At lunch she spoke eloquently of her (nearly) one year in office, and her gratitude to the Court for allowing her the honour of representing the Company. A few of us retired to a local hostelry for a “cleansing ale” to round off a lovely day.