Nigel Kempner was installed as the new Master of the Worshipful Company of Paviors at a ceremony at St Martin-within-Ludgate on 6 March. Nigel is 57 years old and lives in the heart of the City with his wife, Rosalind, and daughter Natasha.

Nigel was educated at Charterhouse School, where he is now a Governor, and then Reading University, where he obtained a degree in Estate Management and became Founding Chairman of the Reading Real Estate Foundation.

He has been in the property investment and development business since 1977, specializing in property in Central London. He has founded and later sold two property companies quoted on the London Stock Exchange. Nigel is currently a Director of Quintain Estates and Development PLC. This listed property company specializes in London regeneration projects, including Wembley, and manages assets in the West End, student housing, healthcare property and a science park. He has been Chairman of Westminster Property Owners Association.

He has always loved sport and was a Senior Vice President for some 10 years at Chelsea Football Club, is a member of the MCC, plays golf at Huntercombe, the Royal and Ancient Golf Club St Andrews and St Tropez Golf Club, and is a member of The Queen’s Club. He and his family love good food, wine, travel, opera and ballet; in fact all the good things of life that they have an opportunity to sample!

At the Installation Ceremony, Terry Last was made Upper Warden and Ian Lumsden installed as Renter Warden. At the Installation Dinner, the new Master said ‘I am privileged to become your Master, and honoured and humbled by the trust that the Livery has put in me to lead it over the next 12 months. I am looking forward to representing the Paviors in the City at as many events as possible and I hope to attend all Paviors’ functions so I can get to know you all. My approach is based on a respect for history and tradition but, if things need to be done, I will find a way to get them done. I want every Pavior to think they are valued, and anyone who considers they are not, should talk to me so that I can put it right.

I am lucky to have two great women in my life: my wife, Rosalind, who has given me great support and is most excited about the next 12 months of being my Mistress; and my daughter, Natasha, who enjoys everything to do with the Paviors and who hopes one day to become a Pavior. I would like to congratulate the new Wardens, Terry Last and Ian Lumsden, with whom I look forward to working closely throughout the year.

We currently have 278 members, including 19 ladies. I am keen to attract new members and would like to achieve a membership of 295 by the end of my year. I urge members, outside the Court particularly, to put forward candidates.’

Ten things you probably did not know about Nigel Kempner

  1. He took ballet lessons until seven years old when a rugby ball was discovered
  2. He did a pas de deux with Sabrina Franklin (daughter of William Franklin of the Schweppes advert) at the Scala Theatre which brought tears to the nannies’ eyes
  3. Aged 12, he appeared as Jessica in The Merchant of Venice, described by Darlington in the Daily Telegraph as ‘a tour de force’
  4. He was a proficient player of the cello until soccer practice took over
  5. He was a handy wing-three-quarter rugby player in his leaner and fitter days
  6. In the 1990s, he appeared regularly on CNBC and Bloomberg commenting on property
  7. He gave the eulogy at his aunt’s memorial service at Westminster Abbey to 2,000 people
  8. He has won, with his family, a reality cooking show on TV, winning a frying pan
  9. He owned a racehorse which only ever raced once
  10. He was a Senior Vice-president of Chelsea Football Club from 1984 to 1992

The new Master’s Plans

  • There is an agreement to lease and refurbish additional space at The Charterhouse, by early summer, to house our artefacts and cellar our wines
  • The Master’s Mid-Summer Event will be a visit to greyhound racing at Wimbledon on 27 June
  • The Mansion House Banquet is on 26 September to enable our Honorary-Liveryman Lord Mayor, Fiona Woolf, to be with us; throughout the year, we shall be supporting her Power of Diversity programme
  • The technical visit will be on 17 September to a regeneration project in Wembley managed by my company, Quintain
  • I thank our working party who have led the initiative to set up a London Highways Academy of Excellence and my objective this year is to try to fund at least five apprentices from this scheme
  • My Master’s Charity this year will be Families of the Fallen, which is a charity with very low administrative costs and provides funding for families and partners of servicemen killed in action in Iraq or Afghanistan when there is no other place for them to obtain financial help; the charity is chaired by TV presenter Martyn Lewis who will be the principal guest at the Spring Livery Dinner
  • The Charity Golf Day will be on 14 July at Bearwood Lakes
  • On 24 January next year, the Upper Warden and I plan to hold a Burns Night Supper at the Guildhall to raise money for Paviors’ charities

I would like to congratulate and thank John Dance, our Immediate Past Master, and his partner Dorian for the huge amount of effort they have put into their roles over the past year, leading our Livery forward and representing it so well throughout the City. I will continue to build on this in the coming year.

From the Past Master

A key part of my role is representing the Paviors in the City. Since my installation, I’ve had the opportunity of attending a host of events including the Carpenters’ White Tie Banquet, the PainterStainers’ exhibition and awards, the Livery School’s apprenticeship exhibition, the Apothecaries’ Dinner, the Budding Brunel presentation, the LHAE certificate presentation, the Drapers’ 650th Anniversary and the Needlemakers’ and Glass Sellers’ 350th Anniversary, to name but a few.

The calendar and year flies by and has been tremendous fun. With my wife Rosalind also attending many functions, it has been an honour for us both to represent the Worshipful Company of Paviors at a myriad of events, which we would not have missed for anything.

As well as celebrating key milestones and anniversaries of other Livery companies, the events I have attended have enabled me to witness the outstanding work the companies are doing to support the younger generation. Their commitment and dedication is invaluable and is helping so many people in so many different ways, and the Paviors are no exception to this.

I’m immensely proud of the work The Company does and the Members that work so hard to make it happen. It’s with great pleasure that I’m looking forward to seeing what the next three months holds.

Nigel Kempner