Sunday, 10 April 2011

Spring Lunch (and more)

      Friday last was the date of the Company's annual Spring Lunch  in the elegance of Saddler's Hall. When you are Master it is always a concern, when choosing a hall for a dinner or lunch, to be sure of selecting one that is both the right size for the event, not too big, not too small, and which is also suitable for the occasion. Saddlers happily was ideal both in size and because of its light and airy feel due to its huge windows. Perfect for a sunny spring luncheon.

Before lunch at a Ceremonial Court  meeting I had the great pleasure of clothing in the Livery Victor Chopin-John; Christopher Goard and Sylvia Robert-Sargeant.  I was also pleased to welcome into the Company as new Freemen Annie Brooks and Simon Carter. After three years on Court and a superb and much longer history of service to the Company, it was also my pleasure to award Mike Kearsley with a framed certificate acknowledging his contribution  to the Marketors.

Ceremonial Courts are also the time when we are able to  recognize publicly those receiving Awards for academic excellence. These are awards for post-graduate studies on marketing topics which have been agreed with the Marketor's Awards Committee chaired by Sue Garland-Worthington and funded by our Marketors' Trust. Awards and cheques were given to :

Christina Howard, London Business School
Lilli Allihn, of Nottingham University
Folaki Olatunji, of London Business School
Dr Philip Klaus of Cranfield University Business School was unable to be present at the last moment due to his wife's illness and so his award was picked by his academic superviser whom we were pleased to see. 

We had an extremely high turnout for lunch and reached the absolute maximum that the hall would hold for lunch.The assembled members and guests were not disappointed by either the lunch or the Speaker. Richard Reed is one of the co-founders of Innocent Drinks now a leading food and drinks company with a turnover of £150million and brand leader in its space. He informed and amused us in equal amounts as he recounted his own lowly beginnings in business in a biscuit factory before he co-founded Innocent Drinks with two university friends. Amongst the anecdotes and jokes (who will forget the two plump nuns) he explained the strong sustainability ethos and ethical stance of the company which gives away 10% of its profits to charity. I thought Mark Price the MD of Waitrose who spoke so well at the Installation Dinner would be a hard act to follow but Richard  followed on effortlessly and everyone went out into the sunshine with a smile on their face.

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