24 April 2024

A month into the role and the Mastership is proving even more interesting than I had expected.
Firstly, our engagement with Charity in the City and beyond. Lizette enjoyed her first outing as Mistress with her sleep-out in Guildhall Yard in aid of the Lord Mayor’s Charity. Your amazing generosity helped her to over 400% of her target. This was followed by the launch of City Giving Day at a Mansion House breakfast where our work with the London Construction Academy was recognised – and Sheriff Andrew Marsden took the above photograph.

The Paviors have made an active start to the year with meetings of Charity, Finance, Admissions and Liverymen’s Committees, the latter under its new Chair, Jacqui Davis, who has many actions in the pipeline.
We have held a lunch at Guildhall for Past Masters and Past Mistresses to recognise their work for the company and to gather their views on re-energising for the future. Those attending covered a long period from John Cruse, who was Master in the Millennium year, through to Charlie Laing, who we expect to be in office in 2025. It gave a good perspective on how we continue evolving and widening our reach.

Activities in the City have included the presentation of the Paviors Prize at the annual City & Guilds Ceremony and joining with other Livery Companies at the Lord Mayor’s Big Curry Lunch. Each further demonstrated the regard in which the Paviors are held in the City. We attended in force at the United Guilds service in St Paul’s Cathedral, where all the Livery Companies gathered together to give thanks for our fellowship, which we put to a practical demonstration by immediately moving to a delightful lunch with the Cutlers’ Company.

Another experience of the role of the Livery in the life of the City of London came in an invitation to lunch with His Majesty’s Judges at the Old Bailey followed by an afternoon in court with Mr Justice Baker, who was sentencing a young man for terrorism offences. The Central Criminal Court is maintained at the cost of the City rather than the Government and currently deals almost exclusively with murder and terrorism cases.

There have been dinners with the Carpenters’, Upholders’ and Masons’ companies, lunches with the Worshipful Companies of Masons and Water Conservators and receptions with the Engineers, Water Conservators and Air Pilots.
Planning is well advanced for our coming events – the Spring Livery Dinner at Haberdashers’ Hall, a management review on the following day at Charterhouse, where your responses to the recent survey will be discussed – and the Court Jolly in The Hague next month.

The Paviors are a remarkable organisation, and leading the Company is a great privilege.