THE APOTHECARIES’ HALL PROVES
JUST THE TONIC FOR THE SPRING LIVERY DINNER
At this year’s Spring Livery Dinner, the splendour of Apothecaries’
Hall was complemented by exquisite music emanating from a 1793 Mantegazza
viola, played so beautifully by renowned recitalist and chamber musician, Virginia Slater.
Dinner was a perfect symphony of delicately fragrant Thai
fishcakes, accompanied by a 2017 Bergerac, followed by loin of Salt Marsh lamb
with spring greens and a lively Valpolicella, and to close, we were tempted by
Sicilian lemon tart with orange boodle and lime sorbet.
The Master’s speech focused on the Livery’s charitable
activities. From his recent visit to Treloars
College, where he witnessed the caring, yet stimulating, environment the young,
handicapped students enjoy, to the charity lunch on 20th July at his
East Sussex home, in aid of the St. Michael‘s Hospice in Hastings. He also gave credit to PM Jeremy Brassington,
on whose initiative the Helen
Arkell Dyslexia Trust is now part of our charitable giving programme.
The Master acknowledged the work of Liveryman, Ted Andrews, a
leading manufacturer of modern felt products.
He has been working with Lock & Co. to test a new felt product. In addition, Professor
Chris Carr, Head of the School of Design at the University of Leeds, has met
Jeremy Brassington and Nigel Macdonald to discuss possible collaboration
between the University and our Company. The Master closed with a vote of thanks
to PM, John Bowler, who has commissioned three important research papers into
the early history of Feltmaking, assisted by Professor Harry Duckworth and
Stephen Freeth. John’s daughter, Kathryn, collated and bound the finished work
into three superb volumes.
After the Master took wine with new Liveryman, Samantha Gordon (daughter of Liveryman Graeme), Court Assistant, Anne Mannix, delivered a most eloquent welcome to the Master’s guests, proposed the Toast, and introduced David Simpson, the co-founder of Petplan, as the Master’s principal guest.
David related an amusing tale which illustrated how
ill-prepared some politicians are
for public service! One Alison Rudd, an amateur genealogist, discovered a
colourful character named Remus Rudd among her forebears. He had been a horse thief, sent to Melbourne
jail in 1885, escaped in 1887, robbed the Melbourne to Geelong train six times,
was caught by the Victoria police, convicted and hanged in 1889.
wrote to Kevin Rudd, the former Prime Minister of Australia, to find out if he
had any additional information. His staff sent back the following:
Remus Rudd was famous in Victoria
during the 1880s. His business empire grew to include the acquisition of
valuable equestrian assets and he had intimate dealings with the Melbourne-Geelong
railroad. Beginning in 1883, he devoted several years to government service
finally taking leave in 1887 to resume his dealings with the railroad. He was a
key player in a vital investigation run by the Victoria police force. He passed
away in 1889 during an important civic occasion held in his honour when the
platform he was standing on collapsed.
led David to question his own credentials for setting up Petplan. After all, he
had a background in property finance, no pets and no knowledge of veterinary
services or the insurance sector.
the past 20 years, his animal clients have generated many “tails”! There was accident prone, Sinbad, the Chow
Chow, whose 50ft plunge from a Cornish cliff may have been a suicide attempt
and therefore might have been exempt from the insurance plan. It wasn’t.
Or the Persian cat with a penchant for knickers, whose regular diet of
lingerie lead to numerous visits to the vet.
recently, David encountered a horse whisperer working in Guatemala. A chance encounter led her to use her horse
whispering techniques with youth gangs, where she introduces a 17 hand horse
and asks a youth to hold it and monitor his own and the horse’s heart
rate. Initially, both readings are high
but after three minutes simply standing in silence alongside each other, both
heart rates drop. A simple demonstration of the importance of trust.
closed by reminding us or the livery companies which have, for centuries, lead
the way in their charitable work, supporting and encouraging the application of
traditional skills in today’s world.
the emphasis on helping all those who share our beautiful planet, we ended a
superb evening with a stirrup cup before departing home, many to our faithful