Newsletter - February 2024

Welcome from our new Master, Dr. George Anderson

Dear Fellow Loriners,

On 25th January, I had the very great honour of being installed as Master of our Worshipful Company for the next year. I am pleased to be joined by the Upper Warden Nicholas Bensted-Smith and the Under Warden John Morton.

The ceremony was held, as is almost traditional, at Vintners' Hall and the dinner was attended by 132 Liverymen, Freemen and their guests, who completely filled the hall. Lieutenant-General Sir Nick Borton was guest of honour and was a reminder of our longstanding connections with the armed forces.

I have been a Liveryman of our Company since 1992, being enclothed by HRH The Princess Royal when she was Master. I became a member of the Court in 2011. During my time on the Court, I have been Steward for Wormwood Scrubs Pony Club and Chairman of the Finance and the Wine Committees, (the latter probably the most important committee in our Company!).

The Mistress, Ann, and I have been married for 54 years and we have four children; Jeremy, Martin, Jane and David, who are all Liverymen of our Company. We also have eight grand-children. Ann and I look forward to representing the Loriners in the year ahead at the various events and at the charities which the Company supports. It will be a hard act to follow the Immediate Past Master Colin Gurley and his wife Anne, who put so much time and effort into their year in office.

There is a full formal programme planned for this year. However, can I remind you all that the Mansion House Banquet will be held on Wednesday 15th May. This was a great success last year and I hope that it will be so again this time. Ann and I look forward to meeting as many Loriners as we can during the many functions which are taking place during 2024.

With best wishes for a prosperous and happy year,

George Anderson

Master 2024/5

Loriners' Installation Dinner, Thursday 25th January

The Worshipful Company of Loriners' Installation Dinner was held at Vintners' Hall on Thursday 25th January. Some of what our Immediate Past Master, Colin Gurley, said in his speech is outlined below:  

'Master, Wardens, Principal Guests, Liverymen, Freemen, Ladies and Gentlemen,

Today’s Court meeting had an extremely busy and extensive agenda and, therefore, I have slightly more to announce at this point than usual. First and most importantly, I am delighted to announce that I had the privilege to instal Dr. George Anderson as the 763rd Master of this Worshipful Company. 

George and his wife Ann, a Liveryman of the Gardeners’ Company, live in Woldingham in Surrey. He is a past Chairman of his village cricket club and a long standing member of the MCC. His other passion is wine; particularly Burgundy. He is a past Chairman of the wine committee of his club, The Athenaeum and is Chairman of the Loriners’ Wine Committee. Tonight’s wine should, therefore, be exceptional!

George was persuaded to join the Loriners by his late father-in-law in 1991, on the premise that "Loriners put metal into horses’ mouths and dentists put metal into peoples’ mouths". Not much difference! George and Ann, we all wish you both a very happy and memorable year. 

Before Installing our new Master, I also had the honour of confirming two further Court appointments: Mrs Patrica Nassau Williams was admitted as a Court Assistant. Tricia is a long standing member of this Company and brings with her extensive knowledge of equine matters. Also, Father James Titley, who was appointed our Honorary Chaplain. Father James is the Guild Vicar of St Lawrence Jewry, our Parish Church, and we look forward to seeing him regularly at our future events. Additionally, we welcomed into the Company one new Liveryman, six new Freemen and one new Apprentice. Please join me in extending to them a warm Loriners' welcome.

Well now, my year is done and all that remains is for me to thank you all, on behalf of Anne and myself, for your kindness and support over the past 12 months. It has undoubtedly been a huge privilege. And that, as they say, is all from me!

Immediate Past Master, Colin Gurley

Visits to Warwickshire Equestrian Organisations

On 8th January, the Master, Master Elect and Court Assistant Nick Athienitis, accompanied by their wives, spent the day visiting four of our major equestrian contacts in Warwickshire.

On a crisp, yet thankfully sunny day, they visited the Pony Club UK, where they received a warm welcome from CEO and soon to be admitted Freeman, Marcus Capel. They also and met members of the the Pony Club team (pictured). 

Next stop, in the same building, was the Riding for the Disabled Head Office, to meet the RDA team. They had a short tour of the RDA’s splendid facilities, including the stables, indoor arena and the mechanical horse used for all levels of training.

The third stop of the day was the HQ of the British Horse Society (BHS), where they not only received a hearty welcome from James Hicks CEO, but they had the rare opportunity of meeting the entire BHS management team and hearing about all the incredible work undertaken for their 220,000 members. The Master addressed the team, stressing the importance of the Loriners' & BHS long and valued relationship.

The final stop of the day was meeting with Charlotte Osborne, Training and Education Manager at British Dressage, where discussions were held to explore ways the Loriners could work with British Dressage, particularly in the area of horse welfare and rider education.

It was an undoubtedly a hectic but extremely productive day, strengthening our ties with these well respected UK equine organisations.

Immediate Past Master, Colin Gurley

Wormwood Scrubs Pony Club raises 35th Anniversary Flag

On Saturday 13th January, the Master, accompanied by Senior Court Assistant and Steward Dr Ian Wingfield, attended the raising of the 35th Anniversary Flag at the Wormwood Scrubs Pony Club. On what was a cold day, a warm welcome was extended to all by Sister Mary Joy Langdon.

An indoor balloon release competition launched our 35th year fund raising efforts and raised in excess of £1,250 for the centre. At the invitation of Sister Mary Joy, the Master assisted in raising the flag that will fly over the centre’s entrance, marking this very special year.

Immediate Past Master, Colin Gurley

Loriners meet HMS Agamemnon on Zoom

Thursday 18th January saw nearly 40 Loriners logging into a Zoom presentation given by officers of the Company’s newest military affiliation HMS Agamemnon, a new nuclear-powered submarine, currently under construction in Barrow in Furness.

After a short introduction by the Immediate Past Master, who described how the Loriners have been linked to HMS Agamemnon, Lt. Commander Hugo Morgan and Lt. Jonathan Ablett (pictured) gave a full and detailed (where possible!) presentation on the history of the submarine service, its capability and life as a submariner. An enthralling session and thought-provoking it was too.

Lt Commander Morgan and Lt. Ablett for taking the time to join the Loriners and giving such an excellent presentation. The Master also thanked Commander David Crosby, CO HMS Agamemnon for facilitating the session and for his commitment to the affiliation with the Loriners. The Master also said how much he looked forward to keeping in touch, as HMS Agamemnon nears completion and 'touches water'.

Past Master, Chris Walton

Message from the Immediate Past Master, Colin Gurley

Dear Fellow Loriners

At the end of a very busy and highly memorable year and as I ride off into the sunset, I would like to record the thanks of Anne and myself to you all for the kindness and support that has been shown to us over the past year.

It has been an incredible honour to serve this esteemed Company as Master and I hope that you have all enjoyed the articles that have been published by our amazing Communications Team throughout the year. Our social media presence is now quite remarkable.

Finally my personal thanks to our Gallant Clerk for all his hard work and very best wishes to our new Master Loriner, Dr. George Anderson and our new Mistress Loriner, Ann.

With my best wishes to you all

Immediate Past Master, Colin Gurley

Communications Committee

February 2024