Coachlines - January 2023

24.01.23 The Master Julian Leach

Master’s message January 2023

The New Year – present and future

A very, very happy New Year

Our first major event after Christmas was our Award to Industry Dinner on 19th January. We were very proud to give the award to YASA, a company that has re-invented the electric motor, making it half the size and four times more powerful. The Livery Committee and I were of the opinion that we had made a good choice but having heard the truly inspiring story from Dr Tim Woolmer, the founder of the company, inventor of the technology and now Chief Technology Officer of the company, we are now absolutely and utterly convinced that we picked an organisation that will continue to succeed and innovate. Definitely, an excellent choice.

The dinner itself, as all our recent dinners have been, was fun and entertaining and I received many congratulations. It occurs to me that now is a good time to indulge in a gentle ‘call to arms’. Since Covid, the numbers coming to our dinners have reduced. This is a phenomenon that is not peculiar to our company. The dinners are the lifeblood of the fellowship that our company thrives on. As Master, I have tried to keep them fun and light-hearted. I’ve brought back the Loving Cup (chocolates instead of liquor). We always have a short musical interlude from the London Choral Sinfonia. Nothing too serious. This time, in a medley of music celebrating food and drink, they sang an inspired arrangement of The Teddy Bears’ Picnic. Our next dinner will be our Automotive Dinner on 23rd March, so although our Master’s welcome to new Liverymen says, “Obligations may no longer involve your attending in your Livery gown and hood upon every summons.” It would be good if we could start filling our halls again. Don’t forget that guests are always welcome.

Then there is our Banquet on 6th June. As you know, we will be celebrating 100 years of British success at Le Mans. We will have the huge honour of entertaining the entire civic party; that is The Lord Mayor and both Sheriffs. Our principal guest will be Derek Bell, five times winner at Le Mans. Past Le Mans winners also due to attend include Mark Blundell, Guy Smith, Andy Wallace, David Brabham, Derek Warwick and Richard Attwood with others hoping to join them. We also hope to be able to attract some historic Le Mans cars. This is surely an event that cannot be missed by you and by people you know who would love it. Tickets go on sale on 1st February.

It has been a relief to be able to meet each other in person following the strictures of Covid. A real pleasure, friends reunited, back where we belong.