Piper The Puffin

Today I hosted my first luncheon with the Judges and five guests. An amazing re-introduction to the hard work all the judiciary do, particularly as the case we followed today was rather harrowing with children and murder involved. For some light relief, a dear friend, Bill Joseph, sent the following limerick to start off a year of luncheons, for obvious reasons it featured a puffin:

London Heathrow approach control, Puffin 4096, “Piper”, requesting permission to land, do you have a longer runway available? We have a heavy load.
There once was a rather smart puffin
Who distracted the Lords from their judgin.
In his new shrievel chain
With its symbols arcane,
He astounded the room they had lunch in.

Shrieval Chain Presentation – Puffin On Pipes

It was simply fantastic to have 230 friends and supporters turn up at the Dutch Church at noon on 19 September for the traditional “Shrieval Chain Presentation”. Richard Townend, St Margaret Lothbury’s organist, kindly took a whirl on the Dutch organ to welcome guests to the Church, which had kindly donated its facilities in aid of the local community. Sir David Wootton, Chairman of the Shrieval Chain Appeal Committee, gave a most wonderful traditional ‘roasting’ of the Sheriff-elect (me). Ruby Sayed and Lars Andersen, joint Secretaries, and Robert Woodthorpe Browne, Treasurer, presented a wonderful Book of Donors in my favourite colour.

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Nothing To Lose But Our Chains… (Badge, and Brooch)

Banker Baron Overstone, on seeing the “unmitigated disappointment” of his new Overstone Hall in Northampthonshire (now derelict), grumbled, “We have fallen into the hands of an architect, in whom incapacity is his smallest fault.”

Well, I certainly don’t feel as morose as Baron Overton. In the case of my Shrieval chain and badge, as well as Elisabeth’s brooch, all we can say is that we fell into the hands of a silversmith, in whom genius is his smallest fault. We are so delighted with Grant Macdonald’s work.

The Shrieval Chain and Badge of Office

presented to Alderman Professor and Sheriff-Elect Michael Mainelli on 19 September 2019

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Despite being three months away from assuming office, our services were called upon within days to assist the current Sheriffs in an unusually fishy matter.

Aal-most ends eel

When attending a service in the Dutch Church to commemorate the Dutch eel trade, like you do, Elisabeth and I encountered a delegation from the Frisian Islands. They came on the good ship eel barge Korneliske Ykes II, with greetings and gifts from the mayor of Súdwest-Fryslân to our Lord Mayor…

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Sheriffs Elect!

On 24 June at Common Hall Chris Hayward CC and I were delighted to be elected Sheriffs to take effect at our installation on 27 September. Here we are pictured outside Cutlers’ Hall with our wives Alex and Elisabeth as we toured nine livery companies in ninety minutes to thank the nearly 1,400 people who turned up to vote!

The City of London Corporation Press Release provides more detail.

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