Sheriffs and Recorders Fund AGM

Tuesday 14th July 2015

About 100 Livery Masters attended the Sheriffs and Recorders Fund AGM. Together with several judges the President of the Supreme Court, the Recorder of London and of course the Sheriffs, we filled Court no 4 for the meeting. We heard several speeches and a moving testimony from a young man, an ex-offender, who spoke of how the Fund had transformed his life and kept him out of prison. The Fund was set up in 1808 in Newgate Prison, the site of the current Old Bailey, to help inmates of Newgate Prison and their families. In 1931 it merged with the Recorders Fund, which had been established to assist offenders released on probation. Today it works mainly through the London Probation Service and has assets of more than £1 milliion. Last year it dispensed £250,000 to its various charities. The farewell speech of the President of the Fund Lady Davies, who clearly had made an enormous contribution to the work and profile of the Fund was responded to by Lord Neuberger, President of the Supreme Court. He paid tribute to her and went on to make an insightful and light hearted speech about the work of the Supreme court. Thus was the official business rounded off and we adjourned for refreshments in the Judges dining room. I had little idea of the work of the Fund and it was a very illuminating evening for me and an enjoyable opportunity to catch up with livery friends and fellow Masters.