The Clothworker: Spring 2020

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SPRING 2020 | No. 21




he Master, Sir Jonathan Portal Bt, hopes you and a guest of your choosing will attend this once-in-a-quincentenary event, celebrating 500 Masters of The Clothworkers’ Company.







All members are invited. Formal invitations were sent by Royal Mail this past January, and again by way of the e-Clothworker in February. We ask that you purchase your tickets before 1 April 2020.



For more information, or to complete your purchase, please visit our online ticket shop:










The 500th Master’s Ball – a black-tie affair with dinner and dancing – will feature a Silent Auction in support of our Clothworkers’ Charity Fund (CCF). Many members have been working with staff behind the scenes to ensure this is an event to remember, and we hope you will enthusiastically participate in our Silent Auction. Our aim is to raise an additional £50,000 (proceeds from the auction will be match-funded by The Company) to be awarded to our three 2020 grant recipients (which will be announced this spring). CAN’T MAKE IT?











Cover: One of the designs exhibited by Amber Sorayapour at Première Vision (Paris, 2019).



You do not need to attend the Ball to participate in the Silent Auction. Bidding for the Silent Auction will open on 1 May 2020, and a link will be distributed to all members. Those who cannot attend, but wish to support our fundraising efforts, will be able to submit a proxy bid in advance of the event.



t’s a great honour to be the 500th Master. We’ve begun a New Year, and I would like to share with you some of the highlights and challenges of my first six months leading the Court. I have particularly enjoyed events aimed at advancing our textile agenda, which is a priority for my year. To give two examples: Christopher McLean May and I attended the prestigious Première Vision International Trade Fair in Paris, where we made some valuable connections. I have visited a number of UK textile companies, including Stephen Walters and Sons Silk Mills in Sudbury, Suffolk. The more I learn about the industry, the more opportunities we discover for supporting its development. I have a particularly interesting and delightful cohort of other Masters. I am enjoying developing friendships.

Sometimes this can allow The Clothworkers’ Company to learn from other livery companies’ experiences. Needless to say, we (the Masters of the Great XII) are enjoying each other’s company at the merry-go-round of dinners in our various halls. I am also loving the chance to learn about the City of London, its markets, its museums, its livery halls and its churches. My visit to a Roman Temple quietly resting for 2,000 years under the beating heart of the City was extraordinary as I (and most others on the tour) had no idea it existed! There have been challenges, too. Inevitably, there was a build-up of tension as the transformational Hall Island Site plans took shape. My particular challenge was to help ensure that the right groups of people heard about the plans in the correct way, and at the right time. I urge all

members to read the news inside this publication (page 6), which has also been available online since November. The atrocities that took place in Fishmongers’ Hall by London Bridge were devastating. I have got to know the Prime Warden and the Clerk of The Fishmonger’s Company well. We all did our best to support them at such a difficult time. And of course, The Clothworkers’ Company has been reviewing its security arrangements in the light of the attack. I have begun to realise the true sense of ‘family’ and ‘community’ – woven like threads through everything I’m seeing and doing during my year. The Clothworkers’ Company is a family, the Great XII is another ‘family’ – as is the livery movement as a whole – and even the City itself is a community. I am enjoying the camaraderie, the pride and the force for good which is evident in each of these groups. There is much to be thankful for and much that makes me proud. The Clothworkers’ Company ended 2019 well, and the future looks bright. I look forward to seeing you at the Hall in 2020 – most particularly at the 500th Master’s Ball and Silent Auction in May!

The Master greeting Past Master Dr Carolyn Boulter at the December Court and Livery Dinner (2019). THE CLOTHWORKER | SPRING 2020


NEW MEMBERS (DECEMBER) Left: Alexander William Guyon, Isabel Olga Hoffmann and Kai Alexander Symington Horne.

Alexander William Guyon Alex is the son of David Guyon and a thirdgeneration Clothworker. His grandfather, John Mervyn Guyon, was made Free by redemption in 1945. However, the connection goes back another three generations as Alexander’s grandmother was the daughter of Sir Evelyn Berkeley Howell; the Howell family connection began in 1816 when Sir Thomas Howell was apprenticed to Charles Furness, a packer in Mark Lane.



Alex read Natural Sciences at Christ’s College, Cambridge, graduating in 2019. He was a member of Cambridge University Bowmen and also played rugby. He currently works at the Sainsbury Laboratory at University of Cambridge and hopes to begin studying for a PhD there.

Isabel Olga Hoffmann Daughter of Rosalie Hoffman and niece of Immediate Past Master John Coombe-

Tennant, Isabel is a thirdgeneration Clothworker. However, she is linked through her grandmother to the Luttman-Johnson family, whose connection began in 1928, and the Horne family, whose Clothworker roots began in 1753. Isabel has a Bachelor of Science from Edinburgh University. She works as a conservationist and is a trustee of Tour du Valat. She enjoys music and plays the cello.

Kai Alexander Symington Horne Kai is the son of Court Assistant Nicholas Horne and grandson of Past Master John Horne (a tenth-generation Clothworker). In 1753, Thomas Horne was apprenticed to Edmund Smith, was made Free by Servitude, and became a coal merchant. Many of the Horne family have served as Masters. Kai is a Sports Agent and has been with KeySports Management for eight years.

Right: Eleanor Meryl Morgan-Williams, Sarah Elizabeth Harrison and James Mathewson.

Eleanor Meryl MorganWilliams Eleanor is the daughter of Susanna MorganWilliams and also niece of John Coombe-Tennant; she is a third-generation Clothworker, but is also linked to both the Luttman-Johnson family as well as the Horne family.

Chancellor’s Scholarship for the Arts during her time at university. Eleanor is also an enthusiastic volunteer, and has given her time to soup kitchens, homes for older people, schools and even a children’s centre in Bolivia.

the connection goes back to the 18 th century, as she is also a descendent of Thomas Horne.

Alastair Mathewson OBE, is a Court Assistant and became Free by Redemption in 2012.

Sarah is a teacher – Head of Classics at Queen’s College. Her interests include art, religions, Greeks and Romans, history and music.

James Mathewson

James studied Medieval History and earned a Bachelor of Arts (Hons) at the University of Manchester, graduating last year. Today, he lives in Manchester and works for a company specialising in Global IT Sales and Marketing Recruitment in Altrincham.

James is a secondgeneration Clothworker. His father, Colonel

His interests include arts, history, sports, film and music, museums and theatre.

Sarah Elizabeth Harrison Eleanor studied Modern Languages at Durham University. She is passionate about theatre and music, holding the Vice

Granddaughter of Sir Stephen Gaselee, Sarah is a second-generation Clothworker. However,



50 FENCHURCH STREET Including a Proposal for The Clothworkers’ Seventh Livery Hall


he Clothworkers’ Company has been on its existing site since its founding in 1528, when The Fullers’ and The Shearmen united and decided to remain at Shearmen’s Hall on Mincing Lane.

500 years, generous bequests from Clothworkers and other benefactors, coupled with wise investments by the Court, have enabled The Company to thrive and grow not only its assets, but also its impact through grant-making.

Over the centuries, Clothworkers’ Hall has changed out of opportunity or necessity – such as the destruction of the third hall by The Great Fire of London (1666) and that of the fifth hall by The Blitz (1941). The hall we are all familiar with today is the sixth on this historic site, opened in 1958. It is our home and the scene of fellowship among members. But it is also our place of work, where we fulfil our civic duties to the City of London, manage our extensive assets and strive to meet our commitments to our textiles partners, our military affiliates, our partners in championing good charity governance, and – in particular – to The Clothworkers’ Foundation. For nearly

This past autumn, we announced our plans for the evolution of Clothworkers’ Hall, securing its future here in the City of London and maximising our assets to increase our charitable impact. We recently submitted our bold proposal for the development of a new Livery Hall, commercial building and public realm for planning permission. The project aims to redevelop the island site that includes Clothworkers’ Hall.



The new commercial development (‘50 Fenchurch Street’), will be at the forefront of the City of London’s strategy for a greener, more environmentally sustainable Square

Mile, offer the City modern office and retail space, create a new public realm and improve access to the historic church tower and crypt. The new Clothworkers’ Hall will be designed with our future needs in mind – including the responsible management of our historic assets, together with the comfort and wellbeing of our staff, members and guests. It is important to all of us that we take the time necessary to plan properly for our seventh hall on this historic site, and we look forward to sharing those plans with you – as they develop – in the months to come. Meanwhile, we’ve made further details about the current application, mostly concerning the planned commercial building and new public realm, available in the Members’ Area of the website, and included some of that information in the following pages...

THE CURRENT SITE 50 Fenchurch Street is an island site bounded by Fenchurch Street, Mincing Lane, Dunster Court, and Mark Lane. The site is owned by The Company. Apart from the Grade I-listed Tower of All Hallows Staining and the Grade II-listed Lambe’s Chapel Crypt, all the buildings were built after 1945. These buildings include Clothworkers’ Hall, Minster House, 46-50 Fenchurch Street, 51-54 Fenchurch Street and St Olave’s Church Hall. Star Alley cuts across the northeast corner of the site. The surrounding pavements are limited in width, congested at peak times and present a poor public realm environment. There is a clear opportunity to improve the public realm, access and routes across the site. OUR PROPOSAL 50 Fenchurch Street will offer the City of London the first of a new generation of buildings with an integrated urban greening strategy. Central to this proposal is the creation of more than 3,000 sq m of new public

space. The growth of the City of London puts ever greater pressure on existing public areas. The public realm at street level has been designed to improve access routes for pedestrians through the City. The building has been set back from Fenchurch Street to improve pedestrian flows across congested pavements. We will provide generous cycle facilities, to encourage building occupiers to travel more sustainably. The new public realm will reveal and make accessible the Tower of All Hallows Staining in a new setting, sympathetic to the historic asset. The design will also provide access to Lambe’s Chapel Crypt, which is not currently open to the public.

A new Clothworkers’ Hall will be located on the eastern side of the site, largely beneath the new proposed public realm. This will be The Company’s seventh hall, continuing its 500-year history on this site. As part of the City of London’s initiative for a significant increase in urban greening in the built environment, an innovative vertical landscaping proposal forms part of the overall design. All of this is in conjunction with providing the next generation of workplace, which is essential for the City of London’s continued growth as a leading global financial centre.




REVEALING OUR HISTORIC ASSETS The proposed 50 Fenchurch Street includes two historic buildings, the Grade I-listed Tower of All Hallows Staining and the Grade II-listed Lambe’s Chapel Crypt, which are not currently accessible to the public. The Tower is all that remains of the church from 1218/9. It is currently enveloped in a raised ground level. This impairs the perception of the Tower, as well as adversely affecting its historic fabric. The Crypt was originally located beneath Lambe’s Chapel on Monkwell Street and was relocated to its current position in 1872. The present Crypt is regarded as a poor re-configuration of the original. NEW PUBLIC REALM The proposed plan reveals the Tower of All Hallows Staining without the barrier of the present raised ground levels, making it a focal point of the new public square. A landscape proposal uncovers the



layers of history of the site and offers a new place for the public to experience and enjoy. Trees and landscaping create an intimacy of scale for people using the space. Raised planted mounds and seating are incorporated. The interpretation of the original church nave provides an opportunity for events and seasonal activities, and will offer those working in the area a tranquil place to meet and relax. The new public realm will be a celebration of the City’s history and culture, and enhance the wellbeing of its workforce and residents. Within the generous public realm of approximately 1,500 sq m area at street level, a new pedestrian route will be created beneath the main building through a 16 m high opening which links the new public realm and Church Tower to Fenchurch Street, the Eastern Cluster and the City beyond. Meanwhile, the entrance to the new public roof garden and Lambe’s Chapel Crypt is accessed from the new public realm at street level.

NEW PUBLIC ROOF GARDEN Level 10 offers a 360-degree public viewing experience. It is accessed via two public lifts at street level, allowing visitors to arrive at a generous terrace with spectacular views over London. The terrace is punctuated by unique sculptural elements of vertical planting. The custom-designed ‘seedlings’ replicate, in an abstract form, the way that seedlings take root in seemingly inhospitable places, emerging and then thriving. Their tall forms provide maximum planting whilst offering the opportunity for people to enjoy a new social space in the City. The ‘seedlings’ are fabricated from cross-laminated timber and perforated to filter wind. They allow glimpsed views through and provide structure on which plants can grow. A double-height winter garden is designed for the public to access throughout the year. It is positioned on the south side of the building, directly adjacent to the external terrace and the public lobby, enabling both the plants and the public to benefit from its aspect.

Facing page: View of new public realm from the corner of Mark Lane and London Street. Below: Inside the double-height winter garden and outside on the public roof terrace at level 10.

To complement the public’s enjoyment of the Level 10 winter garden and roof garden, an informal restaurant / café is proposed. This will allow members of the public — without obligation — to benefit from the food and beverage offer when visiting the space, in contrast to the more formal restaurant offers of other City roof gardens. ENERGY, GREENING & SUSTAINABILITY The design of the development is aiming to be best in class for energy performance, incorporating the latest technology to ensure the tower continues to set a standard into the future. In line with the Mayor’s Energy Strategy, the approach adopted includes the envelope of the building – this involves a highly efficient, responsive façade that optimises the balance of daylight solar control to minimise energy consumption and heat recovery chillers that recycle waste heat, harnessing it in hot water production, instead of releasing it into the atmosphere.

From a sustainability perspective, several key measures are proposed to ensure the impact on the environment is minimised and, where possible, improved. These include enhancing ecological value through extensive greening, SUDS systems to reduce urban runoff, and intelligent design to minimise material use. The development team is targeting

BREEAM Excellent, reflecting our commitment to sustainability. Nature is vital to help cities stay healthy and liveable. This is even more important in cities like London, with an expanding population. 50 Fenchurch Street offers a unique combination of a public square on street level, a public winter garden and public roof garden at level 10, and vertical landscaping to the exterior of the building. 50 Fenchurch Street will be the first building of this scale to incorporate extensive vertical greening (or landscaping) in the Square Mile. Urban greening has a number of widely recognised benefits, including: • Improving biodiversity • Rainwater run-off • Mitigating air and noise pollution • Temperature regulation • Making a place more visually desirable This will benefit both those working in the building and the wider public. 50 Fenchurch Street aspires to lead the THE CLOTHWORKER | SPRING 2020



way to a greener, more environmentally sustainable City of London.

and can be subdivided, offering the opportunity for a dedicated entrance for an ‘anchor’ occupier.

COMMERCIAL TOWER 50 Fenchurch Street will provide over 62,000 sq m of flexible office space arranged around a central core. Floor plates vary in size to maximise the building’s appeal to a range of City occupiers.

The office accommodation will be served by double decker lifts. These will be separate to the dedicated lifts serving the publicly accessible area.

The ground floor reception is generous



Q: What will we do whilst the new livery hall is in development?

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS Q: Where are we in the process?

The innovative external design significantly enhances the environmental performance of the façade. At ground, the bespoke ceramic cladding provides a quality and identity to the building. The podium is characterised with a seamless glazed appearance that sets it apart from the more expressed façade of the ground and tower floors. The tower floors have a bespoke profiled glass detail that provides a sense of shadow and reflection. When combined with the vertical landscaping, this creates a unique building for the City skyline.

10 months of demolition (including archaeological and conservation activities). It is estimated that the building of a commercial tower and new livery hall would take an additional four years.

A: We submitted our application for planning permission in December 2019. Q: When will all of this happen? A: We are in the very early stages of the process, waiting for the decision on our application for planning permission; plans for the commercial tower and livery hall are likely to evolve in the coming months. If a development were to proceed, work on site could not begin before 2022. There would then be an estimated

A: We are currently carefully considering all our options for The Company’s and The Foundation’s ongoing operations, providing for staff and continuing to run events. Our firm commitment to members is to maintain a variety of events (as close as possible to our normal programme), but in an alternative venue whilst we demolish and rebuild the Clothworkers’ Hall. Concrete plans will take shape once we are certain the project can move forward. We will use the e-newsletter and this magazine to communicate our plans, as they evolve and become finalised, throughout the process.

“The design journey of this urban proposition has been one of the most remarkable alignments between commerce, culture and the public realm that I have experienced.” Eric Parry (the awardwinning architect responsible for cultural projects involving sensitive historic buildings, including the Holburne Museum of Art in Bath and the renewal project for St Martin-in-the-Fields in Trafalgar Square).

Facing page: View of the City of London’s ‘Eastern Cluster’, including the proposed development of 50 Fenchurch Street, as seen from the south bank (City Hall). Right: View of the proposed development from Fenchurch Street, looking east.



ARTS FOUNDATION FUTURES AWARDS Bethany Williams awarded a £10,000 Fellowship for Material Evolution Award


he Arts Foundation Futures Awards (AFFA) track five exciting areas of the Arts – from those experimenting in film and music to focusing in on material innovators with new ideas that address our social needs – from working conditions and education to community development, health and climate change. Artists, who are all at least three years out of education and have developed a solid base of work, are nominated by both practitioners and experts involved in their respective art forms. Finalists each receive £1,000 with the winner in each category taking home a £10,000 fellowship. The Company proudly supported the Social Innovation Material Evolution Award, which has an emphasis on the origin of materials, how they are made and distributed, and how they leave us. The goal is for nominees to explore the intersection of material innovation with social design to create sustainable transformations in today’s society. Bethany Williams took home the prize. Her upbringing in a creative and environmentally conscious family



has heavily influenced her practice as a fashion designer, exploring innovative design solutions to sustainability whilst empowering marginalised communities. Her ‘Women of Change’ collection (2018) was created in collaboration with female prisoners and women from the San Patrignano drug and alcohol dependency program. She took inspiration from materials found on the grounds of San Patrignano and used recycled wool and denim from Kent. The wool was hand-knitted via cottage industry on the Isle of Man, where Williams grew up – her mother even handknitted the samples. Williams’ most recent collection, ‘No Address Needed to Join’ utilises waste materials from the publishing industry to create garments that, alongside being recycled or organic, have a considerable social impact. For example, she uses buttons that are produced by the Manx Workshop, which supports people with disabilities into paid employment. Grateful for the recognition,

Williams described the support of The Arts Foundation as a ‘crucial’ part of backing young creatives in the UK right now. She has said the prize will particularly help support her work for the next year, preparing designs for the next year or two years of fashion seasons. It will also enable her to continue working in London, where she has built a number of relationships with nonprofit organisations that inspire and shape her work. Shortlisted in the same category were artists Jack Herring, Lewis Hornby and Fernando Laposse. You can read more about Bethany’s work – and the work of the other shortlisted artists – at: Clothworker Scarlet Oliver was one of three judges for the Material Evolution Award, lending her textiles expertise to AFFA. Scarlet herself designs fabric for couture fashion, bespoke interiors and architectural projects. She is a strong supporter of British-based textile manufacturing, and uses British weavers in her own practice.

Facing page: Bethany Williams (centre) appears on stage at London Fashion Week with models wearing her sustainable designs. Above: Model William Soames in one of Bethany’s designs, created from recycled plastic and dead stock yarn. The shirt was hand-woven by women from the San Patrignano drug and alcohol dependency programme, working in collaboration with Adelaide House (a women’s shelter in Liverpool). THE CLOTHWORKER | SPRING 2020




ashion-Enter Ltd, with funding from the Mayor of London’s ‘Good Growth Fund’ and Haringey Council, officially launched London’s very own Tailoring Academy this past November. The Clothworkers’ Company was proud to join the select group of sponsors that helped fit the new 11,500 square foot space with stateof-the-art equipment – a cutting table, CAD CAM Optitex, and new machines for stitching, pressing and more. Nick Beighton, CEO of, was the keynote speaker at the opening. He said, ‘ASOS has long been a supporter of ‘made in the UK’ brands. In 2008, ASOS provided Fashion-Enter with funding for their Stitching Academy and then further funding for the Fashion Technology Academy in 2015. We are delighted now to see that the success of high-level technical training has continued to extend to the new Tailoring Academy, which will act as



a hub linking local talent to experts, specialist training, professional development courses, equipment and opportunities. ASOS is very proud to be part of this innovation.’ Jenny Holloway, CEO of FashionEnter Ltd and The Tailoring Academy, spoke next: ‘It’s time to train a future generation of tailors! A big thankyou to ASOS for their support and guidance for the past 10 years...This Academy would not have been possible without funding from the ‘Good Growth Fund’ and Haringey Council. Additional funding and support has been generously provided by Clothworkers’, Optitex EFI, Vetigraph, Gerber Technologies, Eastman Staples, K Sewing, Rupitex Fabrics, Marcos Trimmings and Telestia...The launch is a true celebration of how public and private investment can work...’ The Tailoring Academy will create 50

jobs – with the potential for more than 500 more – and support almost 750 apprenticeships, including placements with the world-renowned Savile Row Bespoke Association. The Academy will also link local talent to experts, specialist training, professional development courses, equipment and opportunities. Located on Crusader Estate in Tottenham, it is part of a cluster of academic institutions and businesses working together as part of North East London’s Fashion District, and will complement forthcoming spaces at Monier Road at Fish Island, Hackney Wick and Poplar Works, to deliver skills, affordable workspace, access to finance and innovation programmes to grow a more inclusive and sustainable fashion sector in London. Our own Clerk, Jocelyn StuartGrumbar, attended the opening – he even tested the new pocket welting

machine. He complimented the Academy’s mission to replenish the pool of talent and skills in the UK. Skills programme N17 Creative Callings was also introduced at the event. FashionEnter was chosen by City Hall to deliver the project, which is funded by the European Social Fund and the Mayor of London. The programme aims to boost industries in Tottenham’s Creative Enterprise Zone, supporting 130 creative workers – at least 65 of whom will be women – to improve their career prospects; 38 SMEs will provide work placements and opportunities. Dan Hawthorn, of Haringey Council, said: ‘This Academy will provide jobs for local people, boost our local economy and support many of our residents to fulfil their potential and achieve their dreams. We are excited that Haringey and Fashion-Enter will be home to London’s next generation of fashion talent.’





aster Sir Jonathan Portal Bt and Past Master Christopher McLean May attended the Première Vision exhibition in Paris this past September to award the TexSelect Interiors Prize to Amber Sorayapour from Bath Spa University. Amber’s work demonstrates a passion for colour, often juxtaposing the elaborate patterns found in nature to create dramatically coloured illustrative print designs. Amber was also shortlisted for the



Marks and Spencer Fashion Fabric Prize and earned the New Designers Harlequin Prize this past June. At New Designers, judges said Amber created ‘glamorous statements for the home’. They continued, ‘Her collection celebrates the joy of pattern and colour, embracing the trend for a maximalist interior’. As a result, Amber will have the chance to take up a three-week internship at one of the Harlequin studios. See more from this up-and-coming textile designer on Instagram:

@AmberSorayapour_Textiles. We were delighted to have Amber join us for our Alumni Dinner, just days after she finished exhibiting in Paris. Sponsorship of the TexSelect Interiors Prize helps The Company meet its strategic objective to encourage innovation and foster talent among students and young designers – particularly those who demonstrate an advanced understanding of textile technologies and possess the ability to convert ideas into products.

“[Amber’s] collection celebrates the joy of pattern and colour, embracing the trend for maximalist interior.” Judges, at New Designers, commenting on Amber’s award-winning collection.

Facing page: Sir Jonathan Portal Bt and Christopher McLean May explore Amber’s collection in Paris. Right: Amber proudly poses in front of a sample displayed at her award-winning Première Vision exhibition.



A TAPESTRY CONSERVATOR IN THE MAKING Kim Tourret, Intern at Historic Royal Palaces

The following was originally published by the Institute of Conservation on 21 October 2019. It has been edited, and some parts of the original article have been cut. For Kim’s full blog post, please visit:


resh from graduating in 2018 from the Centre for Textile Conservation at the University of Glasgow, I was lucky enough to be awarded the last of three one-year tapestry conservation internships at Historic Royal Palaces (HRP). These are funded jointly by HRP and The Clothworkers’ Foundation, and based at Hampton Court Palace. I had little practical experience of tapestry conservation prior to the internship, but I was fascinated by their structure and weaving and wanted experience working on large objects and dealing with the challenges of historic sites... As all new staff members to the conservation studio do when beginning

a conservation project at HRP, I started my training with a small sampler completed on a piece of replica fabric, no larger than a square metre. You create the damage yourself, making areas of complete loss and fraying away wefts to leave bare warps, and then try to replicate the appropriate stitching techniques used in tapestry conservation to support and strengthen the weak areas. Once my sampler was approved by my supervisor, I was allowed to work on my first real historic tapestry. Going from practicing on a small piece of replica fabric to conserving an approximately 4m x 3.5m 17thcentury Mortlake tapestry (‘Fireships at Dawn’ from The Battle of Solebay series) seems like quite a jump, but it provided me with a valuable opportunity to sit side by side with my conservator colleagues and learn from their work. Unsurprisingly, I was not put to work on the inner field where the majority of the silk wefts had been lost, requiring intensive conservation

stitching. Instead, I started helping with the borders, where the loss was less severe and I could apply and practice the techniques I learned in smaller areas. Whilst intimidating, this training on an actual historic tapestry prepared me well for the loom work of my individual internship project: a 17thcentury Flemish tapestry, ‘Marcus Aurelius Reproving his Wife’, kindly lent by the Buccleuch Living Heritage Trust from Boughton House. I was able to consider all of the techniques I had been taught to develop a detailed methodology and confidently execute the stitching treatment I planned for the areas of loss and weakness. One aspect of the stitching treatment that can only be appreciated on the actual object is the way support needs to be balanced with aesthetics. HRP adopts methods that aim to fully support the tapestry for the purposes of long-term stability on open display, so conservation stitching can be very extensive after considering how heavy the tapestries are and the stress they are under. Areas that have been totally re-warped (where new warps are inserted to create structure in places that the original warps have been lost) and secured with close

This page: Kim Tourret working in the tapestry studio. Facing page: On the left, the conservation team is wet cleaning. On the right, we see the front of a tapestry after some stitching treatment. © Historic Royal Palaces, 2019



brick couching can have an astonishing number of stitches – on the 17th-century tapestry I am currently conserving, it requires up to 17 stitches per cm2. In contrast to the large quantity of stitching required to strengthen the tapestry, the visual impact on the areas treated is comparatively minimal in most cases. As well as carefully colour matching stitching threads using any remaining wefts or other visual references available, the stitching is carefully balanced to only enhance the image and not restore it. I found that planning the treatment of tapestries is a balance of considering the (literally) big picture and also examining the tiny details. In working on my individual project, I needed to prioritise the key conservation issues and accept that, due to its size, examining and documenting a tapestry in the same way as a smaller object is just not possible. While I learnt that, at approximately 3.7m x 3m, ‘Marcus Aurelius’ is a relatively small tapestry, it is by far the largest object that I have conserved, and it was a real challenge for me. Completing an object examination and providing a report for a private client meant that I needed a way to express a large amount of information in a simple fashion. Diagrams were key, especially when trying to document more than 170 repair patches that were found when the lining was removed.

There is also the not-so-small matter of providing a treatment estimate. One has to bear in mind that standard treatment procedures can require significant time and resources once scaled up. For example, having to scour and block out enough linen scrim to provide the backing for a tapestry will take two people several days. One of the unique opportunities at HRP is the ability to wet clean tapestries in the custom wash bath (the largest in the UK). Preparation focuses on small test areas, where pH levels, colour measurements and micrography are used to quantify the results of the wet cleaning. I undertook all the preparations myself. However, wetcleaning is a big operation in terms of staff resources, needing a team of around six conservators, as well as the conservation science team who monitor the pH, detergency residue and more. For the most part, when carrying out stitching treatment at the loom, the average day is pretty sedentary – although you have to make sure that your posture is good and remember to swap hands occasionally. However, as I found out quite soon after the beginning of my internship, any work outside of the studio is at the other end of the scale physically. Work outside the studio includes the annual audits or condition surveys, and installing and deinstalling tapestries

as necessary for display rotation or treatment purposes. To minimise the impact on the viewing public, the team usually tries to complete these operations outside open hours. For example, it took 20 hours (across four days) for six tapestry conservators (including myself ) and several preventive conservators to deinstall eight tapestries and four armorials from the Great Watching Chamber at Hampton Court Palace. Bearing in mind the weight of the tapestries (the heaviest in the Great Watching Chamber is 78kg, including its roller), installing and deinstalling large tapestries is particularly strenuous. This internship has given me experiences that are unique to tapestry conservation, but also unique to HRP. While a year is not enough to make me a tapestry expert, it has certainly given me rare opportunities and insight into working with them. Tapestry conservation is so much broader, more complicated and challenging than expected, especially in historic settings and with such unique and precious objects. Outside my time in the studio, I have also been fortunate enough to visit Boughton House to view its amazing collection, the National Trust Textile Conservation Studios, and related ICON workshops. These experiences have all added to my professional knowledge and enabled me to further reflect on the work I do at HRP. THE CLOTHWORKER | SPRING 2020




braham Portal is the forebear of our current Master, Sir Jonathan Portal Bt, the 500th individual to have held this office. Abraham was not a Clothworker, but his unusual and colourful career as a silversmith-turned-poet and dramatist is worthy of further attention. Progeny of a Huguenot family from Languedoc, Abraham’s grandfather, Peter (Pierre Guillaume), and uncle, Henri, escaped religious persecution in France by stowing themselves in empty wine casks aboard an Englandbound ship from Bordeaux in the later 17th century. Henri joined a paper mill, took English nationality and later set up Laverstoke Mill – as a result, Portals Ltd has been the leading supplier of watermarked bank notes for nearly 300 years. Our present Master is Henri’s four times great grandson. Peter became a rector in Derbyshire. His first son, Andrew, was given a good education and followed his father into holy orders. However, despite an obvious love and aptitude for learning, Abraham, a second son, was destined instead for the career in trade for financial reasons.



He was apprenticed to a silversmith in 1734. The silversmith in question was none other than Paul de Lamerie, now regarded as the greatest silversmith working in Britain in the 18th century. That Abraham was not entirely happy with his lot is evident from some early verse he sent to his brother, Andrew, who was then studying with a professor in Switzerland: ‘What sacred muse will now my thoughts inspire Or deign to touch me with Poetick fire? Should I sweet Calliope invite they Aid Our noisy tools would fright the tender Maid; Do thou Great Clio then our toil rehearse, Often our noisy art in Gentle Verse. Six in the Morning from the bed we rise And rub the sleepy humour from our eyes.’ Notwithstanding his wistful tone, Abraham nevertheless completed his indentures and became Free of The Goldsmiths’ Company in 1750. He established his business first in Rose Street, Soho, and later in the Savoy. His clientele included Lord

Warwick, Sir George Colebrook Bart MP, the ambassador to St Petersburg, HRH Princess Amelia, the 10th Earl of Huntingdon, as well as the banker and philanthropist Sir Thomas Hankey (of Hankey and Co, Bankers, a past constituent of Natwest); the latter presented a communion set to the Asylum for Female Orphans in Vauxhall that is now in the Victoria and Albert Museum. Despite some early commercial success, Abraham appears to have yearned for a more genteel life and simultaneously tried to break into literary circles, producing the tragedy Olindo and Sophronia in 1758; The Indiscreet Lover, a comedy, in 1768; and The Cady of Baghdad, in 1778 – an opera terminated after only three performances at Drury Lane due to the illness of one of the leading actors. In 1781, Abraham published, by subscription, a collection of his poems, but it met with a lukewarm reception. Upon reviewing ‘The Present of A Gold-Headed Cane’, The Gentleman’s Magazine wrote simply: ‘ of the best, as well as the shortest.’

Facing page: On the left is the communion set donated to the Asylum for Female Orphans in Vauxhall. © Victoria and Albert Museum. On the right is the title page for Portal’s Olindo and Sophronia: a Tragedy. This page: Portal’s portrait, by Hogarth. Below the portrait is the Portal Cup, a new addition to the collection at Clothworkers’ Hall.

The volume of poems had been dedicated to Sheridan, with whom he claimed friendship (Sheridan stood as godfather to Abraham’s son, Richard Brinsley Portal). Abraham was also close to, and his writing was influenced by, John Langhorne (poet, clergyman and translator of Plutarch’s Lives). It is understood that Portal’s portrait was painted by Hogarth, who had himself been apprenticed to a silversmith (engraver) in his youth. The connection with Sheridan was to prove especially helpful to Abraham. In concentrating on his literary pursuits, Portal neglected his silversmith business; by 1778, he was declared insolvent. He later re-established himself as a stationer on the Strand, but it was his theatrical connections that enabled him to end his career as a ‘box-keeper’ at Drury Lane Theatre, earning a small income on commission from ticket sales. As a liveryman of The Goldsmiths’ Company, he was also able to derive some financial relief from that company. Despite some talent in both spheres of his life, Portal failed to attract the support of theatre managers necessary to make a commercial success of his writing. He ended his days in humble circumstances, survived by one of his two sons and three daughters from his second marriage to Elizabeth Bedwell. Had he maintained his focus on his original craft, his career might have ended differently. His surviving work, and his credentials as a pupil of de Lamerie, are worthy of some note, and we are delighted to have recently welcomed into our plate collection a George III silver gilt cup and cover, originally made by Portal for the Earl of Harewood. It has been generously presented by the present Master, in memory of his ancestor. THE CLOTHWORKER | SPRING 2020




DESIGNER BOOKBINDINGS Hannah Dunmow, Archivist


he Company supports the endangered craft of hand bookbinding by commissioning fine bindings from established bookbinders, and also by supporting and funding initiatives by Designer Bookbinders as well as The Queen’s Bindery Apprenticeship Scheme (QBAS). In addition, Immediate Past Master John Coombe-Tennant recently presented a finely bound Great Twelve Visitors’ Book, which features a series of intricate and exquisite pen and ink drawings of architectural features of Clothworkers’ Hall by Emma Bashforth. The Visitors’ Book is bound in full morocco with onlaid leathers in a strapwork design inspired by the ironwork entrance gates of our Hall – gates that survived the Blitz in 1941. The book was bound by Bayntun’s of Bath, and is currently on display in the Entrance Hall along with our other fine bindings. It will be signed by guests at the Great Twelve Masters’ and Prime Wardens’ Dinner each year, a tradition initiated by Neil Foster (Master, 200910), who presented The Company with a clothmaking-inspired Visitors’ Book as his own Master’s gift.

Since our last magazine was published, another of our commissioned bookbindings has been delivered to the Hall. Mr Kilburn’s Calicos – a limited edition print by the Fleece Press – is an album (more like a notebook, measuring 113 x 185 mm) of 62 fabric designs, with some notes about quantities ordered and colourways, dating from 1799 or 1800. It was subsequently used as a scrapbook by Kilburn’s grandson or great grandson, who pasted in pictures and drew lions, tigers, soldiers and more in it! The book is accompanied by a contemporary pamphlet containing 16 patterns by textile print designer Sholto Drumlanrig, taken from Kilburn’s original sketches. William Kilburn was apprenticed to a calico printer in Dublin and moved to Bermondsey in 1777. He was skilled at designing fabric patterns. After managing a calico-printing factory in Wallington, Surrey, he later bought it out. He went on to marry the daughter of a Cheapside cloth merchant who sold his fabric. Kilburn’s designs were highly desirable, and the Victoria and Albert Museum holds an album of his chintz designs (c. 1788-92). The designs in this notebook, however,

are more complex, smaller and more colourful – the final decade of the century saw developments in dyeing processes, a move away from large copper printing plates to smaller woodblocks (dictating a smaller unit for the repeat patterns), a need to simplify the production process, and a growing interest in natural history specimens. Ann Tout has created a delightful and charming binding showing rolls of fabric with brightened versions of Mr Kilburn’s patterns on them. The rolls give a sense of movement, with different thicknesses and a play of lighter and darker colours. They wrap all across the cover, including one on the spine, and roll round into the endpapers inside. The patterned rolls are painted in watercolour with a little pen work and covered with a single piece of transparent vellum: demanding but very enjoyable work she tells us. The roll-holders are made from different colour leather onlays. We are very pleased that Ann also gave us her preparatory sketches, designs and paintings. We endeavour to obtain these papers whenever possible for retention in the archives, as they add to the story of the finished binding, showing the development of ideas and often rejected designs, and are available for researchers to consult in the future.

Facing page: The cover from our new Great Twelve Visitors’ Book. This page: Anne Tout’s new designer bookbinding, in which you can catch a glimpse of pages from Mr Kilburn’s Calicos. THE CLOTHWORKER | SPRING 2020


INSIDE CORPUS CHRISTI COLLEGE LIBRARY Dr Carolyn Boulter, Past Master (2017-18)

The following was originally published by the Sundial, a Corpus Christi College publication, in December 2019. It has been edited, and some parts of the original article have been cut.


n September 2019, my husband, an alumnus of the College, and I visited the Conservation Studio to see the work being carried out on four important books from the Corpus Christi Library – it was hugely impressive! Hugh and I have a mutual love of books; during 51 years of marriage, our collections have increased enormously. For my part, I studied Biological Sciences at the University of Birmingham and have maintained my interest in science, recently researching and writing about Charles Darwin – in particular the classification of barnacles to which he devoted eight years of study prior to the publication of The Origin of Species. In the lead up to my year serving as Master of The Company, I sat on the Clothworkers’ Conservation Committee and took an active interest in the work. During my year as Master, Hugh and I attended functions

connected to the craft of finishing cloth as well as supporting many charities. We also arranged a visit for Court and a lunch at Corpus Christi – for which thanks must go to Head of Alumni Relations, Sarah Salter. As my year as Master came to an end in July 2018, I was invited to choose a charity to which a modest Clothworkers’ donation could be made. With our love of books in mind – my interest in botany and classification, and Hugh’s in history and theology – we contacted Joanna Snelling, the Corpus Christi Librarian, to identify a conservation project in the college’s library. She had the perfect suggestion: a project to conserve two early printed herbals. These included an Italian history volume with botanical specimens and a 13th-century Vulgate Bible. The College is a founding member of the Oxford Conservation Consortium, to which 17 other Oxford colleges also belong, with Jane Eagan at its head. Maria Kalligerou, one of the eight conservators, was chosen to undertake the painstaking work on the conservation of these significant books

from the College library. The 13th-century Bible has a 16th- or 17th-century leather binding that had become almost completely detached. This meant that it could not be safely opened. In such a condition, the wonderful work of the scribes’ handwritten text in Latin on velum, with marginal illustrations, had become inaccessible. The Bible’s cover also had staple marks (evidence that it was once chained in the College), as well as the remains of catches that once kept the volume closed. With the use of paper hinges and conservation quality cloth, the detached binding was carefully reattached to the spine while preserving the original sewing thread. It is now safe for researchers to consult the contents of the volume. Before Linnaeus introduced the binomial classification system, using morphology, the most widely used botanical reference work for a 100 years was the work of Rembert Dodoens (1517-85). He published his first herbal in 1554, and throughout his life edited and extended it through 13 editions in several languages. The Corpus copy was published in Latin in 1616 and was presented to the College by William Clayton in 1667. With each successive edition, Dodoens had

This page: The College’s 13th-century Vulgate Bible, before conservation. © 2019, Corpus Christi College Library. Facing page: Past Master Carolyn Boulter, and husband Hugh, hosting members of the Court on the 2018 Master’s outing to Corpus Christi College, Oxford.



refined the ordering of the plants so that by the time of the Latin translation of 1583, he had ordered his subjects into 26 groups, illustrated by 1,309 woodcuts on 900 pages. Dodoens’ work is forward-looking and interesting because it shows the gradual evolution of the classification of leaves and flowers from the alphabetical listing of names to categories based on structure and form. The Corpus copy of this significant reference work has fine hand-painted woodcuts, and unusually, 35 botanical specimens inserted within its pages. Most of these were attached on the text-leaves with paper tabs, and many are annotated. A few rather large specimens were loosely inserted in between text-leaves. In other places, fragments were to be found in the gutter between pages where specimens had become detached from their tabs, or become brittle over the centuries. As part of the conservation treatment, Maria secured and stabilised the specimens that

were still attached using new paper tabs where necessary. All loose specimens and fragments were either fixed on archival quality paper and/or protected by handmade pockets of archival tissue paper, all according to the size and shape of the specimen. All loose specimens remain in their original location while a detailed documentation sheet now provides guidelines for safe consultation of the volume with its plant insertions. All 35 of the leaves containing botanical specimens were then digitised, to provide greater access and assistance to future researchers. Readers consult many of the 100-plus medical texts William Creed left to the Corpus Library in 1711. Amongst them is a catalogue of the trees and plants of the Oxford physic garden at the time – what an absolutely wonderful trove it is. The volume has an original early 18th-century binding and contains handwritten notes, presumed to be Creed’s own, referring to the structure

of the plants listed. The fly leaf lists no fewer than 1,300 specimens he collected. The single botanical specimen in this book, of the Campion family, has been beautifully preserved. Part of a large bequest from Henry Hare, Baron Coleraine (d. 1749), is a history of Milan written in Italian. This volume had a large number of flower petals pressed between its pages that had caused staining and the petals themselves had become very fragile. Conservation of the pages and fixing of the petals will now enable scholars to consult the book. Bespoke boxes of acid-free card have been made for extra storage protection and the books, their boxes and invaluable history will all sit in the air-conditioned College strong rooms. Both Hugh and I have found it a privilege and a joy to participate in this project. THE CLOTHWORKER | SPRING 2020


PILGRIMS AND PUBLICATIONS Recently, our own Olivia Pittet published her book The Camino Made Easy: Reflections of a Parador Pilgrim. Olivia, who wrote about her travels on the popular Spanish trail, is not the only intrepid Clothworker to have completed this journey. Past Master Christopher McLean May is also a veteran pilgrim – he wrote a foreward to Olivia’s book and provided many of the photographs. Olivia, who lives in New Jersey, travelled to the UK this past autumn, making time to visit Clothworkers’ Hall and reconnect with Christopher to discuss their different experiences in Spain. The Company is delighted that Olivia has donated a copy of her book, which she and Christopher both inscribed, to our members’ library. The Archway Publishing website describes the book thus: ‘Beautifully written and deeply felt, this rich fusion of pilgrimage and personal narrative, landscape and cultural legacy, literature and legend vibrantly re-creates the Camino anew.’ You can find a copy in Waterstones, on Amazon, or in all good bookshops.

The Camino Made Easy: Reflections of a Parador Pilgrim

CHELSEA PENSIONERS: THE SCARLET COAT APPEAL The long scarlet coat is an icon of the Royal Hospital Chelsea. It is worn with pride by the Chelsea Pensioners, who are known across the world as ‘The Scarlets’. This year, a new scarlet coat will be unveiled for the first time – with the same classic style, but fit for modern life. Instantly recognisable, the 18th-century scarlet coats are also heavy and cumbersome, and can limit the duties veterans are able to perform as they represent the Royal Hospital or British Army at events in the summer months or in warmer climes. Chelsea Pensioner Mike Hall speaks for many when he says, ‘When I wear my Scarlet, I feel very proud. I feel like I’m wearing 325 years’ of history. The current Scarlet is a very heavy garment. It’s very hot to wear, particularly in the height of summer. A lightweight coat would enable us to get out and about and present ourselves better to the public. Chelsea Pensioners are much more active these days; we do community work, we attend parades and ceremonies, and we visit prisons and soup kitchens. While we are out and about doing those things, in the current Scarlet, it gets very uncomfortable.’

the iconic design and aesthetic, the new coats will be more comfortable and adaptable for the veterans who wear them. Kashket and Partners, a world-wide manufacturer of ceremonial and parade uniforms, is undertaking the redesign. Once approved by the Royal Hospital Chelsea and the Ministry of Defence, the coats will be produced in a British mill. Pensioners have already had their measurements taken, and are keen to receive the new coats – the first of which should be ready by mid-March (in plenty of time for the Royal Hospital Chelsea’s 2020 Founder’s Day).

This year, the scarlet coat is receiving an upgrade. Keeping

The Clothworkers’ Company proudly supported this project.



INTRODUCING A NEW INTER-LIVERY GOLF CAPTAIN: ADAM WALKER Under very tragic circumstances, I have taken over the running of Clothworker golf. As you know, we lost Tim Bousfield to an accident last year. Tim was our Golf Captain, and an active member of The Company, and we will all miss him more than this short article can convey. Tim managed the golf with a lightness of touch and charm that meant it was always a pleasure to gather and swing a club. Somehow Tim never (outwardly, at least) became ruffled with the (no doubt) frustrating personal administration of his charges. Whether being repeatedly asked the same question (‘With whom am I playing again?’ ‘Is there wine on the table?’ ‘Where is the first tee?’), dealing with

last-minute drop-outs, or handling any number of other mundane queries, Tim remained calm. He led us well and for far too short a time. He was great fun on the golf course, and – whilst a very competitive golfer – I would venture to say his handicap in the clubhouse and over the luncheon table bettered his handicap on the links. We are all indebted to Tim and his contribution to our golf endeavours over the years, and we will always remember him. Looking to the season ahead, we would welcome all golfers of whatever ability, whether currently playing or contemplating a return to the sport.

Our matches are usually foursomes and include lunch and light golf afterwards. Our standard is varied, with most of us realising the limit of our talent, and the result is secondary to the fun. Our fixtures are below, and we have a joint ‘meeting’ with The Dyers’ Company at The Berkshire (not a hatchet in sight) – all are welcome! Please contact me if you would like to join, refresh your golf career or simply to pass on swing-tips. Tim always claimed that we are the most sociable sporting club within the livery, and I’d like to maintain his high-standards in this area... Fore!

To find out more about inter-livery activities, and how you can become more involved in events in the City of London, check out the Inter-Livery ‘Diary’ online. On the same website, you can also read more about the work livery companies are doing across the City of London under the ‘Livery Briefings’ (found in the ‘Library’). Visit: CALENDAR OF INTER-LIVERY EVENTS To be contacted directly about sports, update your online profile to include ‘sailing’, ‘golf’, or ‘shooting’ as a ‘sport you play’. Golf Team: Adam Walker ( 6 April - Great XII Gold Competition (New Zealand), seeking a team of 4 24 April - Headmaster and Governors of Sutton Valence School (Rye), seeking a team of 6 12 May - Joint Meeting with The Dyers’ Company (The Berkshire), seeking as many participants as possible! 11 June - Joint Meeting with the Scots Guards (The Berkshire), seeking a team of 6

Sailing Team: Andrew Yonge ( 30 May - Great XII Sailing Challenge (Seaview Yacht Club, Isle of Wight), seeking all sailors! We gather for dinner on Friday night, and compete on Saturday. We are aiming to enter at least one Mermaid team as well as a yacht or two. Get in touch if you wish to join us! Shooting Team: Charlie Houston ( 14 May - Inter-Livery Clay Shoot (London) 5 June - Rifle and Small Arms Event (Bisley) All are welcome to participate, although the Rifle and Small Arms Event may be more suitable for those with more experience.





Music as Beethoven would have experienced it, on instruments of the time.

Join us at Clothworkers’ Hall for Symphony No. 6 Op.68 ‘PASTORAL’ on 27 April 2020.

As part of the celebrations to commemorate the 250th anniversary of Beethoven’s birth, the acclaimed Hanover Band is performing an innovative programme of all nine symphonies at different livery companies across the heart of the City of London.

The concerts are particularly focused on encouraging younger generations to experience Beethoven and enjoy classical music in general. For this reason, The Hanover Band is offering free tickets to all those aged 30 and under, and at the affordable rate of £20 to all others.

Beethoven in the City will feature a different symphony in a different venue each time, performed in surroundings and on period instruments that Beethoven himself would have been familiar with.

Find out more, or purchase your tickets, by calling 0333 666 3366, or online at:


lunch for members at our Hall. There is limited seating at St Paul’s, but all invitees are welcome to join us for the lunch. Invitations will be sent to Court, Assistants Emeriti and Livery.

Masters’ and Clerks’ Dinner (3 March) We host the Masters and Clerks of many of the other livery companies, together with our military affiliations. Invitations have been sent to Court, Assistants Emeriti and selected Livery.

The Hanover Band is one of Britain’s finest period instrument orchestras.

Link Luncheon (23 April) An annual meeting for Assistants Emeriti, followed by lunch with the widows of former Court Members. Invitations will be sent to Assistants Emeriti and widows of former Court members.

Young Freedom Reception (19 March) We welcome younger members of the Freedom two informal receptions a year. This time, expert Gabe Cook will lead a cider tasting for all guests. Invitations have been sent to selected Court and Livery, and all Freedom under 40.

Civic Dinner (7 April)* We welcome the Lord Mayor, Sheriffs and other members of the Civic party to dine with us. Invitations will be sent to Court, Assistants Emeriti and Livery with spouse/partner. This is primarily a couples’ event for members and their partners. However, if necessary, members may attend unaccompanied, and Assistants Emeriti may attend with a grandchild or unaccompanied.

500th Master’s Ball (15 May) All members have been invited to purchase tickets for this special occasion. A black-tie affair, the Ball will include dinner and dancing, as well as a Silent Auction to raise funds for our Clothworkers’ Charity Fund (CCF). To purchase your tickets, please visit: clothworkers-tickets

United Guilds Service and Luncheon (27 March) The annual service at St Paul’s Cathedral for all livery companies, followed by

*Please note that the date of the Civic Dinner was updated after the printed version of the Events calendar was posted to members this past September.

The full calendar for the Master’s year is available in the Members’ Area on our website (login required):

Log on to the Members’ Area of the website for more: 28


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