There are some days that you just know you are never going to forget. For me a day at the Old Bailey was one of those. Each working day, a few fortunate people are offered the chance to experience justice at its best, starting with a friendly introduction by a Sheriff, and finishing with an afternoon in court, carefully chosen as a trial gets to a really interesting phase. In the middle is a lunch with the judges from the Recorder of London to a magistrate – which on its own was worth the travel. Then into the body of the court – 12 murders to choose from that day, and three terrorism cases on trial. The sheer brain power on display here was astonishing as the lawyers argued complex legal points; the judge dealt with an issue in the choice of a juror with care and sensitivity; the prosecution case set out in forensic detail was a case study in the search for clarity. In a “post-truth” world this was a powerful example of the legal process at work.
Keeping our Scottish Traditions
A return to the Keepers of the Quaich after more than ten years absence, reminded me of the value of this great institution which has brought together the real people who have made Scotch whisky such a success around the world and celebrated their work. Whether distillers, blenders, bottlers, marketeers, writers, hotel-keepers or bartenders they have all played a significant role in the development of this fine spirit. With the presence of the great and the good of Scotland who give so much to the scociety there were no fewer than three Dukes, two Earls and their Countesses, lead by Sarah Troughton The Grand Master, and chatelaine of Blair Castle, and new Keepers from across the world. With Rory Bremner as the guest speaker we were also in the presence of a galaxy of political royalty who entertained us at this glittering and lively occasion in the great traditional Scottish style that has become its trademark.
Easter is in the Air
The Clerk’s office has been busy while I have been away, preparing for the April dinner which will be with us shortly after Easter, when we will be very privileged to have the Chief of the Air Staff as our guest of honour, celebrating the inauguration of the new affiliation with 603 Squadron (City of Edinburgh) in the magnificent surroundings of the Drapers’ Hall. The Wardens and Stewards have been equally busy attending charity events such as the Great Curry Lunch, which is covered elsewhere, and preparing the many communications that we now getting out to members, which leads me to the Easter weekend.
While chocolate will be the treat of choice we can all look forward to a well deserved and relaxing break hopefully in the company of more unseasonably warm and bright weather and the wonderful colours of the emerging Spring time.
A Happy Easter to you all and I look forward to seeing you very soon.