The Master, 150 members of the Livery and their guests met at Drapers’ Hall on April 26 and this splendid setting provided an evening to remember. J&B 250th Cuvee and serious cocktails greeted the company and these led to a meal based around Drapers’ acclaimed beef wellington, served with style by the Hall team and accompanied by a fine selection of wines. Crozes-Hermitage was served with the beef, the Master’s quest for a more diverse wine selection offered not one but two fine German Rieslings for our enjoyment and other liquids complemented a well-chosen menu.
Our guests were greeted by Liveryman Mr Ken Robertson who introduced the Master’s principle guest, Air Chief Marshal Sir Stephen Hillier, and in addition to the Master of the Drapers, also Masters from the Coopers, the Coachmakers, and the Marketors as well the Visitor from the Maltmen and many others distinguished guests from various walks of life. The toast to our guests was greeted with acclamation.
Sir Stephen responded and spoke of the much-valued association between the armed forces and Livery life in general and of the newly commissioned arrangement between our Livery and 603 Squadron based in Scotland. He then outlined in detail several points where the Royal Air Force plays a vital part in the defence of the nation and contributes to joint operations with our allies in a number of trouble spots around the world. He spoke enthusiastically about the calibre of the servicemen and women, many of them young and highly trained, who serve on our behalf in carrying out the RAF’s role in a modern and troubled world. He also reminded the company that next year 2018 will be the centenary of the formation of the RAF. Sir Stephen then proposed the toast to the Company and the Master.
The Master responded to the Air Chief Marshal’s stimulating speech endorsing our close association with all three services which are much valued. He then thanked the Master of Drapers for his warm welcome and the opportunity to dine in their fine hall. Details of new members and our new Bursary scheme were outlined and the Master thanked all those who had made the evening such a success.
A stirrup-cup was then enjoyed by many and the evening closed most satisfactorily.