It’s hard to believe that I am nearly half-way through my term as Master of the Worshipful Company of Chartered Architects. Not a single week has passed without at least one event to be attended or involved with and between us, at the time of writing, Deirdre and I have represented the Company on nearly 60 occasions. In 2017, personal highlights for me were the Company weekend in Sheffield; the opening of the Garden of Remembrance at St Paul’s Cathedral on 6th November; the Lord Mayor’s Show (http://architectscompany.org/lord-mayors-show-2017/); and the Carol Service at our Mother Church, St Lawrence Jewry. In 2018, my Reception at the Tower of London; the Livery visit with the Lord Mayor and Lady Mayoress to Treloar’s School in Hampshire; our Livery Banquet; and the Annual Lecture are the high spots so far.

The first Committee meetings and Court of the New Year recorded good progress in all fields of activity. Of particular note are the Company’s application for a Royal Charter; negotiations to take out a lease on the Temple Bar as our headquarters; and progress with our 30th Anniversary Livery Halls book.

By giving prizes for excellence, the Company actively supports the City’s four schools, the multi-discipline Teambuild project and the International Building Press annual awards. http://architectscompany.org/company-awards-spring-update/

As well as attending these events and personally awarding some of the prizes, I have been a guest at five other ceremonies at which a number of the other construction-orientated Livery Companies have given craft awards to their apprentices. The encouragement and promotion of apprenticeships in general are being actively supported by the City and successive Lord Mayors, and the WCCA is about to commence a dialogue with the RIBA through President Ben Derbyshire, who is a Liveryman of the Company, to investigate the introduction of apprenticeships into architectural education.

On the subject of education, but less formally, the planned series of early evening talks on various aspects of City life and walks around the Square Mile will commence on 21st and 29th March respectively. These are aimed particularly at the newer, younger members of the Company, but I suspect that some of our senior Liverymen and Freemen might learn a few things that they didn’t know, so all are welcome. The monthly practice visits hosted by members of the Company are also continuing. The programmes for all of these events have already been issued by the Clerk but are repeated below in case you missed them.

I look forward to meeting as many of you as possible over the next few months.

Stephen Wagstaffe, Master