Dear Fellow Lightmongers,
It is now just over a month since I became master and I would like to give you regular updates on my activities on behalf of the company. The Installation dinner was a date not to be forgotten when I had the honour of taking over from Deputy Master John Rowsell who before that date was giving me constant reminders of the number of days to go before the handover. It was great to see so many friends at the dinner in Tallow Chandlers where we turned the lights down as low as Health and Safety would allow to dine by candlelight.
Duties started the following week at St Pauls Cathedral where I planted a remembrance cross on behalf of the company, particularly remembering those who had fallen on the Somme 100 years ago.
Remembrance service at St Pauls Cathedral 7th November 2016
Before the Lords Mayor’s Show we were able to see the installation of the installation of the 689th Lord Mayor of the City of London, Dr Andrew Parmley at the Silent Ceremony. Andrew’s career has revolved around music so his charities this year are the LSO Discovery program to educate, support and inspire young people through music-making; St Paul’s Music giving children new skills and raising their self-confidence and Music in Hospitals. We will of course be supporting the Lord Mayors appeal alongside our own charities.
Our entry into the Lord Mayors Show was once again supported by our cadet units and our affiliated schools. I was joined in our carriage by the Mistress Lightmonger and Deputy Master John Rowsell and Sandy. Many thanks for everyone that took part which resulted in good coverage on television as we passed Mansion House sporting our illuminated Bowler hats. As seems to be the case the day was ‘damp’ although I have been wetter!
Lightmongers carriage at Lord Mayors Show 12th December 2016
Lightmongers as seen on the BBC 12th December 2016
We were pleased to attend the Mary Hare Prize Giving along with other members of the company. Mary Hare is one of our affiliated schools who educate students who are profoundly deaf. This was my first visit and it was impossible not to be inspired by the achievements of both Students and Teachers alike. The Mistress was particularly taken by the Chemistry lesson where things were going ‘bang’ in test tubes. I would encourage any member of the company to visit the school to see the outstanding work they do there. I was pleased to present the Lightmongers prize for technology to 2 students who had both designed and constructed working table lamps.
During the month I have also been a guest of the Plaisterers, Environmental Cleaners, Actuaries, Cutlers and Barber Surgeons companies at their events in the city. I am now discovering new places in the city that I would have previously walked past and one earmarked for a return visit in the Priory Church of St Bartholomew the Great where the Cutlers held their Sexcentenary service of thanksgiving. The interior is subtlety illuminated to create a great atmosphere and surely must be the work of a lighting professional.
Livery companies at Priory Church of St Bartholomew the Great, 6th December 2016
The calendar year drew to a close with our annual carol service at St Boltophs Without Aldgate. This was well supported by our own members and the families of our cadet units TS Wizard and 56 Woolwich who were also in attendance. I always think that the carol service marks the start of Christmas and is a signal that Christmas trees and lights can be put up.
Cadets from TS Wizard at St Botolphs 7th December 2016
Cadets from 56 Woolwich at St Botolphs 7th December 2016
As Christmas approaches, livery activities quieten down. That is with the exception of the Clerk who has been working hard to ‘create’ the Lightmongers Christmas card for 2016. This year we are featuring the winning design from the Illuminated River Competition which was only announced on the 7th December. We are pleased to be supporting this initiative which will undoubtedly give lighting a high profile along the river Thames during the coming years. See their website illuminatedriver.london
I finish on a personal note as it was with pride I attended the ceremony at Guildhall where my son James received his Freedom of the City along with the family. I will have the pleasure of welcoming him as a Liveryman in the coming year.
Presentation of the Freedom of the City of London to my son, James Simpson 16th November 2016 Guildhall London.
Please remember to book our Annual Members and Guests Dinner Friday 17th March 2017 this year to be held in the splendid grandeur of the magnificent Drapers Hall a chance to bring clients and friends- advance book with the clerk.
Also, start preparing your clients for our Annual Golf Day again to be held at the exclusive RAC Club Woodcote Park Thursday 27th April 2016.
13th December 2016