CMCE Showcase 8 Feb:  Ethics and Consultancy
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Farewell to a Clerk

We had effectively 4 different office addresses in his first 6 months before a happy wind blew us to the Skinner’s Hall where Leslie has successfully presided over the Company’s administration for the last 5 years.

The appointment of a Clerk, especially to a young company without generations of engrained traditions and history to call upon, is a difficult one. By the summer of 2008, we had failed to find a suitable external candidate so it was with some relief that the Master and Wardens were delighted when, after the Summer Court, Assistant Leslie Johnson offered his services which were gratefully received.

The transition from Liveryman to Clerk is not always an easy one and Leslie’s job was not made any simpler by having to arrange my Installation Dinner, pretty much from scratch, in under 2 weeks. Added to that we had effectively 4 different office addresses in his first 6 months before a happy wind blew us to the Skinner’s Hall where he has successfully presided over the Company’s administration for the last 5 years.

Five years in some ways doesn’t sound long until you think of working with 5 very different Masters, organising 5 installation dinners, charity and education suppers, 3 gala dinners not to mention a myriad of lesser functions all of which have brought their own particular challenges. In addition 5 wet Trafalgar days, 5 cold Remembrance Days and 5 taxing Lord Mayors Shows, keeping the troops in order on the Lower Thames Road after refreshments in the Cheshire Cheese.

That said, it cannot be described as a real hardship tour. The onerous requirement to accompany the Master has led to many good lunches at Berry Brothers and Rudd, some annual fun with Searcy’s at the Vintners and innumerable events round the City which have destroyed the constitution of many a lesser clerk.

Despite these tribulations Leslie has been instrumental in bringing the Company’s finances into a more manageable state, improving the general level of administration as well as consolidating our position within the corporate City. Throughout this time he has been well supported by his wife who has kept herself out of the limelight but helped him to retain his sanity by firmly insisting on an annual, stress free sunshine cruise. Finally, during his tour of duty we have all become very well aware of what the walrus said and look forward to the mantra of our next Clerk!

I would personally, and on behalf of the Company, like to thank Leslie for his efforts and achievements in the last 5 years and whilst saying goodbye to him as a Clerk, welcome him back as a Liveryman.

Past Master,  Ian Daniell