The Clothworkers' Company Annual Review 2020

Page 1

COVER ART Mark Cockram’s cloth collage, beneath the completed designer bookbinding of London Scenes: Wood Engravings by Hellmuth Weissenborn [Whittington press, 2001].

THE CLOTHWORKERS’ COMPANY ANNUAL REVIEW 2020

ANNUAL REVIEW 2020


THE CLOTHWORKERS’ COMPANY MASTER Alex Nelson

CLERK TO THE COMPANY Jocelyn Stuart-Grumbar

WARDENS Philip Portal Tom Ingham Clark Melville Haggard

EA TO THE MASTER AND CLERK Emma Temple

COURT OF ASSISTANTS Dr Carolyn Boulter John Coombe-Tennant Denis Clough Joanna Dodd Katharine Hirst Michael Howell Dan Jago Michael Jarvis Peter Jonas Antony Jones Colonel Alastair Mathewson OBE Christopher McLean May Susanna O’Leary Sir Jonathan Portal, Bt Dr Lucy Rawson Dr Cordelia Rogerson The Hon Mary Ann Slim Andrew Strang Hanif Virji John Wake Andrew Wates Robert West Timothy West Andrew Yonge

DIRECTOR OF FINANCE, PROPERTY AND INVESTMENTS Hamesh Patel CHIEF ACCOUNTANT Andrew Boon BEADLE AND HALL MANAGER Michael Drummond DIRECTOR OF GRANTS, THE CLOTHWORKERS’ FOUNDATION Philip Howard HEAD OF COLLECTIONS AND ARCHIVES Jessica Collins MEMBERSHIP AND COMMUNICATIONS MANAGER Renée LaDue

HONORARY ASSISTANT Andrew Blessley

The Clothworkers’ Company Clothworkers’ Hall Dunster Court, Mincing Lane London EC3R 7AH +44 (0)20 7623 7041

enquiries@clothworkers.co.uk www.clothworkers.co.uk Like us on Facebook! Twitter: @ClothworkersCo Instagram: Clothworkers_Co


ABOUT THE CLOTHWORKERS’ COMPANY

CONTENTS PHILANTHROPY 2

The Clothworkers’ Company is a 500-year-old philanthropic membership organisation with roots in the textile trade. Established by Royal Charter in 1528 through the merger of The Fullers’ Company and The Shearmen’s Company, we were founded to promote the craft of clothworking in the City of London. We supervised the training of apprentices and protected standards of workmanship.

Clothworkers’ Foundation. Together with income from The Foundation’s own investments, these funds support grant-making for capital projects, distributed to UK charities aligning with The Foundation’s nine key programme areas. In 2020, The Foundation awarded grants in excess of £9.29 million, which included a robust emergency response to support charities through the pandemic. Please refer to The Foundation’s Annual Review for details.

Today, our mission is to play our part in the civic life of the City of London, support British textiles through education and skills development, foster Fellowship and promote Trusteeship among our members and more widely, and direct our position and wealth towards charitable causes and social good.

The Clothworkers’ Company itself directly awards grants in support of textiles and trusteeship across the UK, to our military affiliates and to other selected charitable causes. The following pages of this publication cover our key areas of grant-making, which amounted, in 2020, to more than £1.3 million during this extraordinary year. Our Annual Review is directed both at the members of The Clothworkers’ Company as well as external audiences, illustrating what we have done to fulfil our industry and charitable ‘mission’, and build upon our philanthropic legacy.

TEXTILES 4 CHARITABLE MISSION 10 TRUSTEESHIP 12 ARCHIVES & COLLECTIONS

14

MILITARY AFFILIATES

20

Facing page: Designer bookbinding of London Scenes: Wood Engravings, by Mark Cockram. See the ‘Archives & Collections’ section to read more.

The Clothworkers’ charitable giving is principally channelled through our grant-making charity, The Clothworkers’ Foundation, established in 1977 with a significant endowment from The Company. Each year, The Company passes its surplus income, having met the costs of running the livery hall and our other activities, to The Foundation. In 2020, The Company transferred more than £2.7 million to The

Clothworkers may refer to the Members’ Supplement for more detailed financial information. ANNUAL REVIEW 2020

1


PHILANTHROPY 2020 ≈ £4 MILLION* INDUSTRY MISSION (TEXTILE GRANTS) Academic Research and Innovation University of Leeds, School of Design (PDRA and PI, Universal Finish project, two years) ..................... £185,000 University of Leeds, CCTMIH (PDRA, HyFaCol) .................................................................................................... £183,000 UAL, Central Saint Martins (MA, Material Futures) ................................................................................................. £15,000 University of Leeds, Colour Science (MSc; Polymers, Colourants and Fine Chemicals) .............................. £10,000 University of Leeds, CCTMIH (PhD bursary)................................................................................................................. £9,000 Technical Education and Vocational Support Textile Centre of Excellence, Edu4Tex .......................................................................................................................... £50,000 The Weavers’ Company, Entry to Work Scheme ......................................................................................................... £30,028 Cockpit Arts, Clothworkers’ Award for Weavers (£66k committed over three years)................................... £22,000 UKFT, Made It Project 2020 ................................................................................................................................................. £3,750 Heritage and Conservation University of Oxford, Textile Study Centre (committed over three years) ..................................................... £265,000 Textile Conservation Centre ................................................................................................................................................ £15,500 Textile Design University of Huddersfield (BA/BSc Textiles Practice) ........................................................................................... £20,000 UAL, Central Saint Martins (print bursary and materials fund) ............................................................................ £15,000 Arts Foundation Futures Award, Materials Innovation Award .............................................................................. £15,000 Bradford Textile Society Design Competition ............................................................................................................... £5,650 New Designers (The Clothworkers’ Company Associate Prize, Printed Textiles Design Award) ............... £2,000

*Please note that this grants report is intended to illustrate the breadth and diversity of our charitable giving in 2020, particularly within our key areas of interest. It is not a comprehensive list of our grant-making or charitable giving, which may also include commitments made in previous years or smaller donations to a variety of organisations. Clothworker members may see a financial breakdown of The Company’s income and expenditure (including ‘Mission’ costs) in the Members’ Supplement.

2

THE CLOTHWORKERS’ COMPANY


CHARITABLE MISSION (OTHER GRANTS) Trusteeship Charity Governance Awards (seven cash prizes) ........................................................................................................ £35,000 Reach Volunteering ............................................................................................................................................................... £30,000 Association of Chairs ............................................................................................................................................................. £26,000 New Philanthropy Capital (NPC) (charity sector seminars) .................................................................................. £21,000 Cause4, Trustee Leadership Programme ...................................................................................................................... £20,000 Military Affiliations No. 47 Squadron RAF, Family Welfare Programme ................................................................................................... £23,500 Scots Guards, Soldiers and Family Welfare Programme .......................................................................................... £20,000 FANY (Princess Royal’s Volunteer Corps) (Operations Officer Salary, £60k committed over three years) ............................................................................................................................... £20,000 Scots Guards Archive ............................................................................................................................................................. £12,000 FANY (laptops for use during the COVID-19 pandemic) ........................................................................................... £2,250 Other Charitable Grants Livery Kitchens Initiative ................................................................................................................................................... £40,000 No Going Back (Employer and Participant Training) ............................................................................................... £25,000 Inspiring Connections, Catch22 (formerly the Livery Advocates Pilot) ...............................................................£22,500 £20,000 The Creative Dimension Trust (creative skills workshops) ........................................................................................ The Lord Mayor’s Appeal .................................................................................................................................................... £10,000 St Paul’s Cathedral (chorister bursary, £40k over four years) ................................................................................ £10,000 Designer Bookbinders, Transferring Design (bespoke training masterclasses) ................................................. £7,400 Bishopsland Educational Trust (bursaries for materials, tools and educational visits as well as £500 to support students with living expenses during lockdown) .................................................................... £6,500 South House Silver Workshop Trust (scholarships) ................................................................................................... £6,000 Red Zone PPE Initiative ......................................................................................................................................................... £5,000 Aldgate School (six laptops to support students in lockdown) ................................................................................. £1,500 The Clothworkers’ Foundation The Company's surplus is donated to The Clothworkers’ Foundation (including match-funding for members’ contributions to our Clothworkers’ Charity Fund) .................................................................... £2.7 million

ANNUAL REVIEW 2020

3


TEXTILES Over the past decade or more, The Clothworkers’ Company and The Clothworkers’ Foundation have committed in excess of £12 million in textiles-related support, with the categories of Academic Research and Innovation as well as Heritage and Conservation accounting for the lion’s share. From 2017, in order to allow the grants team and trustees of The Foundation to dedicate their full attention to improving the lives of people and communities facing disadvantage, we have consolidated all textiles grant-making within The Clothworkers’ Company. The decision reasserted textiles, alongside trusteeship and other charitable giving, within the The Company’s ‘mission’.

in textiles should take, and discover how we might achieve the most meaningful impact on the industry. TEXTILES STRATEGY The Company aims to: • •

• Ground-breaking innovation is happening in textiles, and investment in the skills that help bring this innovation to market is required. As a result, we felt it was the right time to reaffirm The Company’s roots in cloth, clarify what direction our enduring interest

prioritise British textiles; focus on cloth, rather than costume, and on the manufacture of cloth; direct our involvement in textile design towards talented students at higher-rated institutions, with an interest in people who are studying or possess the ability to convert ideas into a product capable of being manufactured, as well as an understanding of textile technologies; rigorously explore the prospective usage of equipment that we fund; direct our support in heritage towards cataloguing, indexing, storing, conserving, displaying and improving access to important textile collections and archives.

Facing page: University of Leeds, where we support the Clothworkers’ Centre for Textile Materials Innovation for Healthcare as well as Textiles and Colour Science activities.

4

THE CLOTHWORKERS’ COMPANY


ANNUAL REVIEW 2020

5


TEXTILES ACADEMIC RESEARCH & INNOVATION In 2012, we helped to establish the Clothworkers’ Centre for Textile Materials Innovation for Healthcare (CCTMIH) at the University of Leeds, with a £1.75 million anchor donation. The Centre works to develop enabling technologies based on advances in textile science and engineering. From bioactive wound dressings that are capable of speeding up healing rates in the management of diabetic ulcers, to implantable devices able to promote the regeneration of bone or skin – the application of textiles in healthcare is a rapidly developing field. Working with nurses, orthopaedic, dental and cardiovascular surgeons to identify unmet needs in current

clinical procedures, the CCTMIH team is developing physical prototypes that overcome the performance limitations of existing products. The Company has also been a principal supporter of the Textiles and Colour Science activities at University of Leeds since they were established. We currently provide bursaries for a number of postgraduate students. In addition, subject to access and utilisation criteria, we make capital grants to assist with the purchase of cuttingedge specialist equipment. In 2020 alone, we awarded more than £380,000 to the University of Leeds for postgraduate research, with the largest awards going to innovative projects in the School of Design. Professor Stephen Burkinshaw’s

project to find a Universal Finish, or multi-functional finish, received £185,000. Working with the Dutch company Tanatex, the project aims to develop and bring to market a finish that has low environmental impact and improves aesthetics, durability, performance, longevity, and stability. In two years’ time, we hope to see a return on any profits the university can generate from the product (which could be reinvested at Leeds). We also agreed to sponsor postdoctorate research into a pioneering wound-dressing clinical trial – the first for the University of Leeds – that will test HyFaCol material in patients with Scleroderma. In addition, we awarded £15,000 towards the MA Material Futures at Central Saint Martins (UAL). TECHNICAL EDUCATION & VOCATIONAL SUPPORT Breakthrough ideas in textiles – and materials more widely – must satisfy the demands of sustainability and, where possible, bring a societal benefit for future generations. For exciting innovation to make the journey from concept to commercial success, laboratory to the marketplace, it is important

Left: Stephen Walters, a 300-yearold, family-owned textiles company.

6

THE CLOTHWORKERS’ COMPANY


TEXTILES PROFILE: ENTRY TO WORK SCHEME Molly Hayden landed her dream job, and relocated 300 miles to work at a 300-year-old silk mill. Upon receiving an Entry to Work scholarship in 2019, she spent six months at Stephen Walters, learning about each department at the vertical mill, where the entire process from design concept to finished fabric occurs. The 23-yearold received training on the technical design system. She also worked on designs for the prestigious company’s SS21 Womenswear and Menswear collections.

Offered a permanent role as a technical designer, Molly said, ‘It’s exciting working with customers in the luxury market and contributing towards the wide range of fabric developments. I am looking forward to learning new skills and gaining more confidence within the team.’ When interviewed by the BBC (October 2019), she admitted, ‘I think I always knew that I wanted to be working at the heart of the textile industry... being the next generation in this industry is exciting.’ The Weavers’ Company Entry to Work Scheme receives support from The Clothworkers’ Company,

and supports as many as 12 graduate work placements each year. The programme gives young people a step up the career ladder and helps the industry recruit the next generation of talented textiles workers. The scheme provides a substantial contribution to the graduates’ salary for their sixmonth placements, in the hope that the experience will lead to full-time employment. More than 80% of placements lead to offers of permanent roles, often within some of the best textile companies in the UK. ANNUAL REVIEW 2020

7


TEXTILES

to nurture the technical skills that enable apprentices, students and trainees to succeed. For the past few years, a significant amount of funding has been directed at UKFT, with a number of programmes aimed at building the international reputation of the UK textiles industry and delivering training and skills development. We have also continued to fund The Weavers’ Company Entry to Work Scheme, securing placements and creating job opportunities for young people in textile manufacturing. Our successful partnership with

creative business incubator Cockpit Arts continues to flourish. Cockpit provides studio space and access to equipment for graduate weavers, enabling them to set up in business. Our support – repeated again in 2019 with a grant of £66,000 (over three years) – is allowing a fresh round of applicants to benefit from the facilities and business mentoring programme Cockpit offers. Alicia Rowbotham (who featured in Crafts Magazine this past spring), Francesca Miotti, and Millie Thomas received bursaries in 2020. At the same time, our 2018 Clothworkers’ award recipients became ‘alumni’, although some of them took on private studios

at Cockpit Arts to continue their journey in the unique community of craftspeople and makers. Clothworkers had the opportunity to peek inside (via Zoom) the Clothworkers’ Weaving Studio in Deptford and hear more from some of our award recipients earlier this year. CONSERVING THE PAST The Company has been one of the foremost supporters of textile conservation in the UK. Since the 1980s, we have made capital grants, funded research, and provided bursaries for students at the Centre for Textile Conservation, supporting the Centre to

Below: Sample of work completed by a Alicia Rowbotham, a first-year Clothworkers’ Award holder at Cockpit Arts.

8

THE CLOTHWORKERS’ COMPANY


the tune of £1.75 million when it was at the University of Southampton, and now in Glasgow. The Clothworkers’ Centre for the Study and Conservation of Textiles and Fashion at the Victoria and Albert Museum (V&A), Blythe House, was made possible by our £1 million grant towards the £3 million overall cost of the Centre, established to offer students, designers, and researchers greater access to the V&A’s extensive collection. The Centre will move to the new V&A East site, in Stratford, during the course of the coming year (after a delay due to the pandemic). In 2014, the British Museum opened its World Conservation and Exhibitions Centre. Our £0.75 million grant to the museum went towards the creation of The Clothworkers’ Organics Conservation Studio, housed within the Centre, to bring conservation and scientific research together under one roof, with specially designed studios and laboratories. In 2019, we provided a grant of £70,000 to support the Manchester Art Gallery in relocating its clothing, textiles and fashion accessories from Platt Hall to its new city centre gallery. We also awarded £45,000 to the Worthing Museum and Art Gallery, supporting plans to create a costume research centre. In 2020, The Company awarded

£265,000 to the University of Oxford Textile Study Centre. This will support two roles over three years during an ambitious £10 million capital project, building one of the world’s most important textile collections centres, and providing new opportunities for conservation, study and engagement. The 8,000-strong collection, owned by the Pitt Rivers Museum, is wellknown for its diversity, aesthetic value and technical interest. ‘It’s a collection that shows how people wore textiles and what they wore them for,’ said Julia Nicholson, Curator and Joint Head of Collections at the museum. ‘Not just special pieces, but everyday clothing and textiles, too; items with a different kind of value.’ That includes arctic intestine garments, early examples of pre-Colombian textiles from South America, and Maori cloaks that show the first introduction of European materials. And yet, the museum is only able to provide full access to some 75 artefacts from this textiles treasure trove. The rest are safely – but inconveniently – stored in a nearby facility and in need of cataloguing. The Textile Study Centre aims to provide greater access as well as critical conservation and care to the collection, but the centre will do so much more. Set to open later this year, it will incorporate specialist facilities for textile storage,

state-of-the-art conservation and digitisation labs, flexible research and teaching rooms, and additional display space. It will also build bridges for researchers with other collections, such as the Ashmolean Museum and its 4,500 Pharaonic linen weaving, block-printed Indian medieval trade textiles and medieval Islamic embroideries. DESIGNS FOR THE FUTURE The Clothworkers’ Company funds BA/BSc bursaries in Textiles Practice at the University of Huddersfield. In 2020, we also renewed our annual £15,000 grant to Central Saint Martins, supporting a printed textiles bursary for a third-year student and the cost of materials for up to 10 final year students. We continued to support New Designers and the Bradford Textile Society Design Competition, although the former was completely virtual in 2020 and the latter was delayed due to the COVID-19 crisis. Clothworkers Scarlet Oliver, Fiona Ginnett and Emily May (herself a past New Designers award recipient) served as judges and bestowed our Printed Textile Prize upon Ellen Martin. Emily will also be acting as a judge for the four awards The Company sponsors in the Bradford Textile Society Design Competition. ANNUAL REVIEW 2020

9


CHARITABLE MISSION Today, our core purpose as an organisation is to support British textiles, champion trusteeship, and use our position and wealth for good. The Company’s main vehicle of charitable giving is through annual donations to The Clothworkers’ Foundation, including almost £2.7 million in 2020 as The Foundation launched a rapid emergency funding response to COVID-19, and worked with a community of funders to support charities across the UK. However, we also directly fund a number of initiatives through our ‘Industry Mission’, in support of textiles, and our ‘Charitable Mission’. The latter includes grant-making for trusteeship, support for craftspeople or protecting endangered craft skills, our military service affiliates, and a number of other charitable causes that support our community here in the Square Mile and throughout the UK, that align with our core values and other areas of grant-making, or that support people in need where we can help make a difference. Some of our ‘Charitable Mission’ grant recipients are highlighted in the following pages.

Livery Kitchens Initiative meal prep. © The Merchant Taylors’ Company.

10

THE CLOTHWORKERS’ COMPANY


LIVERY KITCHENS INITIATIVE In the first phase of the Livery Kitchens Initiative (LKI), we joined The Grocers’, Drapers’, and Merchant Taylors’ (among others) to support a project that would allow vacant livery halls to leverage their catering facilities or offer donations towards the cost of providing meals to hardworking and overwhelmed NHS staff members. In the first few months of lockdown, 34,000 meals had been prepared and delivered to hospitals located in the most deprived areas of London.

NO GOING BACK A unique initiative supported by more than 14 livery companies, No Going Back is a rehabilitation programme that provides training, support, employment and housing. The team are dedicated in their support of individuals leaving prison, offering opportunities for training, upskilling and employability in order to ensure the passage into employment is as seamless as possible for both the individuals and employers. Clothworkers’ made a donation of £25,000 to this pan-livery endeavour. ST PAUL’S CATHEDRAL

The project grew from there as more livery companies became involved. From November, the LKI had connected with City Harvest London, pivoting to support communities in North and East London experiencing food poverty. Production increased to more than 2,000 meals per week, delivered across 14 communities, and has continued to improve its impact and expand its reach across London during this difficult time. We contributed a total of £40,000 throughout 2020, with another £20,000 committed to the project during 2021.

St Paul’s Cathedral has a longstanding tradition of choral excellence dating back to the 12th century. More recently, BBC Classical Music named the choir as one of the top 10 choirs in the

world. Choristerships at St Paul’s are offered to children who demonstrate musical aptitude, the presence of academic grit and an ability to cope with the demands of the position. St Paul’s is committed to ensuring that no child of talent should miss out on the opportunity of becoming a chorister at the cathedral on financial grounds. Support from Clothworkers’ (annual bursary for boarding) and other donors enables St Paul’s to uphold this promise, offering places on the basis of talent and musical aptitude, irrespective of the family’s ability to pay the fees. Young people from diverse backgrounds are therefore able to have a remarkable start in life. Our previous bursary recipient, Toby Davies, has now left St Paul’s and Ismael Dosoo is the our Clothworkers’ chorister. THE ALDGATE SCHOOL At the end of the year, the Clerk received an appeal from The Aldgate School – the only state-funded school in the City of London. Heading into another national lockdown, the school needed support to purchase chromebooks for children who would otherwise be prevented from participating in mandatory virtual learning activities. The Company sponsored six new laptops – a small, but important, contribution to the local community. ANNUAL REVIEW 2020

11


TRUSTEESHIP The nature of The Company’s commitment to Trusteeship is twofold. First, we have established The Clothworkers’ Company as a grant-maker and a champion for change and improvement to charity sector governance in the UK. Second, we encourage and support our members in serving as trustees or school governors. We are proud to sponsor and host the annual Charity Governance Awards, celebrating the best practice and innovation of trustee boards throughout the UK. The awards are made possible through the partnerships we have forged with New Philanthropy Capital (NPC), Prospectus and Reach Volunteering. In May 2020, the Charity Governance Awards ceremony was held virtually, so that we could continue to showcase exemplary leadership by charity boards and to support the sector at a time when it was experiencing unprecedented challenges. We also commissioned an external five-year review of the awards. The conclusion was that the awards remain a unique opportunity to celebrate the importance of good charity governance, and they are perceived as a valuable way to recognise the work of charity boards and draw attention to important issues of charity governance. Suggestions for improvement

12

THE CLOTHWORKERS’ COMPANY

“A charity’s service users are dependent on its trustees for the leadership required to keep the organisation capable, nimble and sustainable. This means having the right breadth of talent, lived experience and range of skills at the table.”

of those already serving. The 2017 ‘Taken on Trust’ report from the Charity Commission found that the c. 700,000 trustees in the UK were mostly white, male and over the age of 55 – and many were serving on multiple boards. While those serving are making a meaningful contribution, most charity boards are not reflective of the communities they serve, and there are still an estimated 100,000 trustee vacancies that boards are struggling to fill.

included refreshing the categories annually and considering what more might be done to celebrate all the shortlisted charities and spread good practice even further. When the 2021 awards opened for entries in November 2020, many of these suggestions were reflected in the process and rewards offered.

A charity’s service users are dependent on its trustees for the leadership required to keep the organisation capable, nimble and sustainable. This means having the right breadth of talent, lived experience and range of skills at the table. Being a trustee is hard work and challenging, but 93% of trustees say it is immensely fulfilling. And yet, charity boards still struggle to develop policies or create environments where equity, diversity and inclusion thrive and to recruit the expertise, experience and talent they need to govern effectively.

We are grateful to our Clothworker members for continuing to actively participate in the Charity Governance Awards, volunteering for the firstround evaluation of submitted entries. However, we know that it is not enough to shine a spotlight on good governance, and we must find a way to facilitate the necessary changes across the sector. Working with our partners, we support efforts to increase participation of would-be trustees, to improve diversity and inclusivity on boards, and to enhance the capability

Recognising these challenges, we continue to invest in and support the Cause4 Trustee Leadership Programme and related seminars. Normally a five-week programme that ends in a charity-trustee matching event, the programme successfully adapted to the


constraints of the pandemic for online delivery this past year as a two-day virtual seminar. Our partners at New Philanthropy Capital (NPC) also converted the charity and trustee training seminars we fund into virtual webinars. The Company continues to support the Reach Volunteering TrusteeWorks recruitment service. An estimated 10,200 people registered on the platform as volunteers or trustees in 2020 (more than double the previous year). As a result, matches nearly doubled too, with 1,149 trustees appointed and another 2,437 volunteers placed. The estimated value of that volunteer time is approximately £50 million, and more than 60% of the organisations that have benefited from the service are small charities with an income of £250,000 or less. These trustees strengthened the boards they joined with crucial skills in finance, business development, communications and digital. Reach Volunteering has also helped these charities increase the diversity of their boards. The applicants and appointees made through Reach’s service are significantly more diverse in terms of protected characteristics such as age, gender and ethnicity than the average trustee board and the UK population as a whole. Finally, we were delighted that our previous grant to the organisation,

which supported in-depth research on diversity and inclusion, has resulted in the development of the Trustee Recruitment Cycle, a new online toolkit with advice, practical guidance and tips to help charities recruit more diverse trustee boards. In all that we do, The Clothworkers’ Company welcomes expressions of interest from members. The flourishing partnership with Reach Volunteering provides Clothworkers with access to fascinating trustee roles, published directly to the Members’ Area and highlighted in the monthly e-newsletter. The Trustee Leadership Programme, co-funded with Close Brothers Asset Management, is offered free of charge to members. For those already on trustee boards, a number of NPC’s seminars are offered at Clothworkers’ Hall (when they are not virtual). The voluntary activities of individual Clothworkers are many and varied. Realistically, it is difficult to quantify existing commitments

to trustee or volunteer roles, or the extent to which this might be expanding. However, trusteeship is increasingly part of the ethos of The Company’s membership, and 36% of Clothworkers reported that they were serving as a school governor, trustee or volunteer in 2020. If you are looking for a way to use your expertise or talents to give back to your community, try searching for a trustee role using the Reach Volunteering platform, which Clothworkers can find by logging into the Members’ Area and following a link, or by searching online. Members interested in volunteering as a school governor are encouraged to explore opportunities through Livery Schools Link. Finally, Clothworkers can use their experience and time to help mentor and advocate for young people from disadvantaged backgrounds through the Catch22 Inspiring Connections programme, which The Company has sponsored from the beginning, including renewed funding in 2020. ANNUAL REVIEW 2020

13


ARCHIVES & COLLECTIONS We continue to preserve, make accessible and develop our unique collections of archives and works of art, whilst seeking to support talent and nurture skills in selected endangered crafts. ARCHIVES The year began promisingly for the Collections and Archives team with a successful volunteer placement hosted, seven tours of the Hall, and five academics undertaking research using The Company’s Archives in January and February alone. We anticipated the year being even busier than previous ones,

14

THE CLOTHWORKERS’ COMPANY

with an exciting bookbindingthemed collaboration planned for London Craft Week in May; however, coronavirus was to change everything. As the first lockdown approached, final visits to the Hall were made to decant display cases, securely store bookbindings and other objects in our basement vaults and collect hard drives of digitised material in preparation for remote working. Despite being far away from the collections we look after for much of 2020, it was possible to be highly responsive and productive

whilst working from home, utilising online resources we have developed in the past (e.g. www.londonroll.org and www. clothworkersproperty.org) to help us continue to operate a public-facing enquiry service and undertake research – for example, to investigate whether The Company had any historic links to the transatlantic slave trade. During the year, we also redesigned our online catalogue, Calmview, to provide enhanced search functionality and ease of use, coupled with new catalogue descriptions and images of our archives and works of art. The new online catalogue was


Facing page: An Elizabethan property deed relating to the tennis court on Fenchurch Street. Below: Completed binding of London Scenes: Wood Engravings, by Mark Cockram.

launched alongside The Company’s new public website in July 2020 (available at www2.calmview.co.uk/ clothworkers/calmview/) BOOKBINDING The global pandemic has had a significant impact upon the livelihoods of craftspeople, with the cancellation or premature closure of selling exhibitions and fairs across the UK and beyond. Many have been unable to access their studios and workshops regularly. We were therefore keen to continue our programme of commissioning

bindings uninterrupted in 2020, in order to lend vital support to bookbinding as an endangered craft. During the year, we initiated commissions with Lori Sauer of John Tallis’ London Street Views, 1838-1840 [London Topographical Society, 2002, 2nd edition] and Jeanette Koch of The Lord Mayor’s Show: 800 Years 1215-2015 by Hannah Bowen [London, 2015]. We were delighted to receive Mark Cockram’s completed binding of London Scenes: Wood Engravings by Hellmuth

Weissenborn [Whittington press, 2001] in the autumn. Inspired by Weissenborn’s dramatic woodcuts of a dark, war-torn London during World War II, Cockram created an architectural binding that gives us layers and glimpses of London through arches, doorways, windows and shoring up posts in the form of sculptured boards and cloth collages beneath a single top layer of dark leather. Despite the monochrome covering, this underskeleton cleverly brings movement and depth to the binding, with occasional hints of colour evident beneath the surface. ANNUAL REVIEW 2020

15


ARCHIVES & COLLECTIONS SILVER In 2020, we also initiated a new silver commission with the talented designer maker Patrick Davison. Patrick honed his craft in Glasgow and Florence before setting up a workshop at his home in Kent. He exhibits his work nationally and internationally, has won several awards for best design at The Goldsmiths’ Fair in recent years and also teaches at West Dean, the Royal College of Art and on the Contemporary British Silversmiths’ masterclass programme. He is a trade Freeman of the Worshipful Company of Gold and Silver Wyre Drawers. Patrick was given an open brief to design a silver centrepiece for Clothworkers’ important collection of historic and contemporary plate,

16

THE CLOTHWORKERS’ COMPANY

and came up with a stunning design for a low, oval dish that utilises his mixed metals ‘mosaic’ technique. The centrepiece was made over a nine-month period – encompassing two lockdowns – and delivered to the Hall in early 2021. Here, Patrick explains more about the commission and gives a sense of the intricate fine-tuning, precision and skill that went into the making of the piece: ‘The centrepiece is constructed from varying sizes of sterling silver, fine silver and 22ct gold tubes. These tubes were soldered together into groups of three and pulled through a square drawplate to distort their shape and give them a

square profile. The square tubes were then cut into slices, or tiles, before being soldered together to form sheets. The larger-sized tiles were used on the outer edges of the centrepiece, and they reduce in diameter as you approach the centre of the piece. The rim of the dish is double skinned for strength, but the many holes on the surface give a transparency to the piece and will create a lively interplay between the two layers when it is viewed on the table. ‘The design was developed after a discussion about centrepieces and their use within The Clothworkers’ Company. I also spent time researching and looking at past centrepieces; however, I was encouraged to produce a piece that developed the spirit of my personal work. I have often worked by making a material which has patterns or structures generated during the forming and making process. Within my work I want these qualities to be further exposed by the shape and often fairly simple final form of the work. This is, however, often a result of trying to find the strongest form to balance the rich aesthetic of the material, experimenting with proportions and scale with the ambition to find the most appropriate and enjoyable


“I am very proud of the centrepiece and very grateful to The Clothworkers’ Company for entrusting me with such a commission. I hope that it is enjoyed within The Company for many years to come.” Patrick Davison, Silversmith

ANNUAL REVIEW 2020

17


ARCHIVES & COLLECTIONS result. I do however enjoy the warmth that is revealed by a steady refinement of the form, finally resting with a shape, style or scale that captures the motivations behind the work. This can be quite an uncertain process, but ultimately rewarding if the work finally has resonance and impact. ‘Making this piece was a great opportunity for me to make a larger work, this being the largest piece I have made to date. It required a great deal of planning and time to make. As this method of making is a new technique in my work, I had to also spend some time reflecting

on the final finishes, and how best to showcase the technique, without losing sight of the piece as a whole. I aimed to use finishing techniques that would keep the work’s aesthetic power, without softening or reducing its impact. This resulted in periods of substantial learning and experience, and many of the tools and methods I have used here can be applied to future work. ‘I am very proud of the centrepiece and very grateful to The Clothworkers’ Company for entrusting me with such a commission. I hope that it is enjoyed within The Company for many years to come.’

SUPPORTING TALENT We have acted as a patron of the arts for many centuries – evidenced by the commissioning of designer bookbindings and silver plate, and today continue to foster talent and nurture skills in key selected areas through grants and sponsorship as well. We fund prizes in the Open Choice category of Designer Bookbinders’ biennial competition, which consistently attracts highquality bindings from talented craftspeople. The 2020 competition and exhibition was postponed due to the pandemic, with winners announced in April 2021. We are the sole funder of bursaries to enable deserving binders to attend training masterclasses, jointly organised by Designer Bookbinders (DB) and the Society of Bookbinders. In 2020, we made the second of two grants towards DB’s Transferring Design initiative, a new scheme to deliver introductory and bespoke bookbinding training to students on allied courses in UK art colleges and universities, both as a means of skills transfer and in order to encourage new talent to consider entering the craft. As part of the initiative, renowned

18

THE CLOTHWORKERS’ COMPANY


bookbinder Kate Holland undertook a short period of teaching at West Dean in the autumn (featured in the most recent edition of Clothworker Magazine), but many other planned sessions had to be postponed due to the pandemic. Our funding will therefore roll over into 2021. The Company was also a Founding Partner of the Queen’s Bindery Apprenticeship Scheme (QBAS). The scheme was regrettably forced to close in October 2020 due to financial difficulties exacerbated by the global pandemic. All six bookbinders left the scheme with their levels 1-3 bookbinding qualifications, awarded by the City and Guilds of London Institute, and four have already found employment within the craft. In silversmithing, we continue to make an annual grant to Bishopsland Educational Trust to enable students to purchase raw materials and essential tools and take part in educational trips. Bishopsland is a unique oneyear residential workshop for emerging silversmiths, providing masterclasses in craft techniques coupled with essential training in marketing and business skills. Prominent alumni include

Above: Katie Watson, working outside at Bishopsland during the first lockdown.. Facing page: Brodie Birss, Bishopsland Educational Trust.

Rod Kelly, Jane Short, Theresa Nguyen, Angela Cork and Miriam Hanid, all of whom feature in our growing plate collection. During the year we supplemented our funding to Bishopsland to provide further financial support to the five students who remained onsite during the first lockdown, with their tutor, in order to help with living costs. We also agreed funding towards a new postgraduate scholarship scheme founded by the South House Silver Workshop Trust. Devised by Rod Kelly, Livery

member of The Goldsmiths’ Company, the Trust offered two six-month scholarships based in Shetland and Sheffield with both Kelly and Brett Payne, renowned silversmiths. Jessica Jue and Ellys May Woods began their scholarships in early 2021, and four further one-month scholarships were additionally recently announced, due to recognition by funders of the importance of the scheme in helping to pass on craft skills and nurture talent at a time when craftspeople have been so adversely affected.

ANNUAL REVIEW 2020

19


MILITARY AFFILIATES We are proud to support affiliations with HMS Dauntless, the Scots Guards, No. 47 Squadron RAF and the First Aid Nursing Yeomanry (Princess Royal’s Volunteer Corps) – also known as the ‘FANY’. Our financial support primarily assists with a range of welfare activities for the service men and women, and their families, as well as grants for special projects. The HMS Dauntless (and her crew) have not been active whilst the ship has been under repair, but we are looking forward to hearing from the new commander in due course. Meanwhile, we awarded £20,000 to the Scots Guards Soldiers and Family Welfare Programme

along with an extraordinary grant of £12,000 to the Scots Guards Access to Memory project, aimed at unifying disparate catalogues of Scots Guards archives and improving the catalogue descriptions. We were fortunate to welcome Brigadier Harry Nickerson to the Hall in September to say good-bye and wish him well in retirement. Although small and socially distanced, the occasion also allowed the Master and Clerk to reconnect with Major James Kelly. We are delighted to contribute £23,500 to No. 47 Squadron RAF annually, as a welfare grant, although the COVID-19 crisis prevented them from deploying the funds as anticipated. However, we are pleased to receive reports that they will be

directing their grant towards even more programmes for the squadron and families, including operational support in deployed locations, a Families’ Day, Squadron barbecues and holiday celebrations, a Squadron recognition lunch, a Squadron Force Development Fund, and more. The FANY’s year has been dominated by the COVID-19 pandemic, as they have been part of a nationwide response team, helping our communities through the pandemic. Volunteers have worked tirelessly – remotely and on the frontlines – to support the NHS Nightingale Hospital, National Emergencies Trust Coronavirus Appeal, City of London Police, several London coroners, and, more recently, the deployment of the national vaccine programme. The Company was proud to be in a position to support the HQ at the start of the pandemic with funds for three laptops, enabling the team to work remotely. This was in addition to our annual contribution towards a salary and running costs of HQ.

Sneak peek behind the stacks at the Scots Guards’ archives.

20

THE CLOTHWORKERS’ COMPANY


“I feel very privileged to have been able to play a very small part in the fight against COVID-19. I have such respect for the work of the NHS matrons, whom we were supporting directly. Under the most difficult of circumstances, they remained positive, professional and wholly focused on the wellbeing of their staff and patients. They are remarkable.” Tania, serving at Royal Hospital London

ANNUAL REVIEW 2020

21


COVER ART Mark Cockram’s cloth collage, beneath the completed designer bookbinding of London Scenes: Wood Engravings by Hellmuth Weissenborn [Whittington press, 2001].

THE CLOTHWORKERS’ COMPANY ANNUAL REVIEW 2020

ANNUAL REVIEW 2020