Past Masters of The Company

The Master and Past Masters on night of May 2010 at The Royal Charter presentation.


*A Maxwell Caplin MBE FFS FRSA; 1977/78 (Painted by Maurice Pickering in 1980).

The image to the left is a photograph taken of the oil painting of Maxwell Caplin by Maurice Pickering. On the right is a photo of The Master Maxwell Caplin during Builders' first Master's summer visit which was to to Dusseldorf in 1978. The unidentified gentleman MC is talking to is one of our German hosts.

In this old photo reproduced using the limitations of the website please see Fred Howe - first Clerk and also Beadle, The then Master Maxwell Caplin, Senior Warden Brian Scruby, George Rooley, mostly hidden and unidentifiable is Merrick Burrell finally Peter Allen (in the shade)

*Brian Scruby CBE FEng FICE FIStructE FASCE M Cons E M Soc C E (Fr); 1978/79.

Brian was also President of The Institution of Structural Engineers in 1967/68, Chairman of The Association of Consulting Engineers Association for 1974/75. George Frederick Brian Scruby was born in 1912 and for 50 years lived in the Sutton and Cheam area of Surrey. Essentially a practical engineer, Brian attended Wimbledon Junior Technical College until 1927 and, by part time studies, first at Wimbledon Technical College and later at Borough Polytechnic, He became a Graduate Engineer in 1935 and an Associate Member in 1937 finally a full Member in 1944.

*Peter Allen FRICS; 1978/80

Chartered Quanity Surveyor

The Court of Master Peter Allen

*Merrick J Burrell FCIOB FRSH; 1980/81

*Dr Socrates P Christie PhD BSc (Eng) FICE CEng FIStructE MConsE MSocCE(Fr) MInstHE FIArb FFB; 1981/82 (photo from Mrs Lilian Stephenson) Doctor of Philosophy

*George A Rooley CBE FICE FIMechE FInstF PPIHVE MConsE FFB; 1982/83

George Rooley was the I.Hosp.E President in 1972 and was elected I.F.H.E. (INTERNATIONAL FEDERATION OF HOSPITAL ENGINEERING) President 1972/74.

Above black & white photo is of George as President IHVE in 1965-66

*Ronald F Fielding FRIBA FFB; 1983/84

Above in photo on right with George Rooley handing over to Ron Fielding October 1983

Architect for Department of Trade and Industry building 1959-64 in Victoria Street SW1. Also set at right angles to Bucklersbury in EC1, Temple Court, completed in 1962 to the design of O. Campbell Jones and Ronald Fielding, is a tall slab for Legal and General Assurance (now occupied by the SMBC Bank). Excavations for Bucklersbury revealed the second-century AD Roman Temple of Mithras, now resited to the west with a different orientation and set on a terrace at an anachronistically high level above-ground. The central Mithraic belief concerns the god’s slaying of a bull in a cave – the triumph of light and life over darkness, which is experienced by going down into a subterranean cavern. Classical sculpture from the site is displayed in the Museum of London. Many will know 7-10 Hanover Square W1 by designed by Ronald Fielding in 1972. Stone with alternate windows set into chamfered protruberances.
After a lifetime of design Hill House - Little New Street, London EC4 was built in 1976 to Rons` design. Hill House is an eight-storey office block.  Shoe Lane Public Library is one of the occupants.  The building is clad with pre-cast concrete panels.  The top four floors are recessed.  Vertical stair towers stand on the Shoe Lane and Printer Lane sides. Even today it is used by Architectural students as a classic of the mid seventies.
In 1963 Ron was appointed to Chair the RIBA Committee for the newly established British Standards to produce a code of practice for designing disabled access to buildings.

*Maurice Emmitt Pickering FRIBA FRSA; 1984/85
Landscape Architect

It was in Maurice Pickering`s year The Company was first recognised as a City Company without Livery. There followed the sitipulated 15 year period before the grant of Letters Patent.

Born in 1927 in Lincolnshire and educated in Coventry. He was then involved in Civil Defence and later commissioned into the Royal Warwickshire Regiment. After the war he trained as an architect at Birmingham University before moving to London to study landscape architecture at University College London. He set up his London based practice in 1959. He became a Freeman of the City in 1977. Maurice served as President of the Faculty of Building in 1983 and became an early and enthusiastic member of the fledgling Company of Chartered Architects in 1988. On other fronts Pickering, a voter in the Farringdon Ward of the City, became a member of the United Wards Club and the Royal Society of St George. He also joined the City Livery Club and progressed through the council to become its president in 2004-2005. His civic interests went beyond the City. He became heavily involved in the Freemen of England and Wales and became its president for a two year spell between 2002 and 2004. He died on January 22, 2008, aged 81.

Above in an oil painting as Master and right wearing the Jewell of President of The City Livery Club.

In early 2007 Maurice Pickering, was made the first Life Vice President of Harrow Heritage Trust. The honour is in recognition of his many years as Founder Chairman of Harrow Nature Conservation Forum - a voluntary organisation which manages 600 hectares of London's Green Belt, part of the Borough of Harrow. Maurice, then 80, was somewhat wheelchair bound by motor neurone disease. However he remained heavily involved in the preparation of a ground-breaking history of Guilds, which, he reported, began in pre-historic India!

*Ronald G Taylor BSc CEng FICE FIStructE FFB FWeldI; 1985/86 
Ron was born in Brighton in 1916.  After attending Varndean Grammar School, he obtained an external University of London BSc(Eng) degree at Brighton Technical College, and joined AE Watson as structural designer.  During the War, Ron served in the Royal Engineers, rising from Sapper to Captain.  He worked on the original Bailey Bridge at the Military Engineering Experimental Establishment, and in 1943 joined the Special Operations Executive. In 1944, Ron parachuted into occupied North-east Italy, and spent five months blowing up trains with the partisans.  After the war, he was in public works with the Allied Military Government in Trieste until 1946, when he rejoined AE Watson as technical manager.  Ron spent a short period as a lecturer at his old college, and in 1948 joined Costain John Brown Ltd.  There followed a period with Tubewrights Ltd as a development engineer, then Ron went to Stewarts & Lloyds, later part of British Steel Tubes Division.  He had a major hand in developing and establishing structural engineering with tubes and hollow sections, notably the Boeing 747 hangar at Heathrow airport.  Ron left British Steel at the age of 59, and set up his own practice as a consulting engineer.  Ron was a member of the Council of the Institution of Structural Engineers, and a Visiting Professor in the Department of Civil Engineering at Surrey University.  He continued to work into his eighties, and died in 2002, aged 86. (with grateful thanks to his son Dr R G Taylor for this update) (Read more of Ron in SOE HERE)


Below:- Past Master John Pryke at his last Livery Dinner

*John Pryke, MA(Cantab) CEng FICE FIStructE MSocCE(Fr); 1986/87

John formed John Pryke & Partners, Consulting Structural Engineers more than 40 years'ago with  experience in the field of structural engineering, subsidence, architectural design and expert witness services. John has authored books on structural engineering and contibuted to Instiution working groups.

*Dr Ken Brown MSc(Eng) PhD (Eng) CEng FICE FIStructE; 1987/88

*Jack Edward Neary OStJ FRICS CC; 1988/89 - Sheriff of The City of London 1985/86 - President City Livery Club 1983 - 84

Master of The Worshipful Company of Shipwrights 1984

Jack had been in Partnership with George Cooper Banks carrying on business as Quantity Surveyor under the style or firm of BANKS. WOOD & PARTNERS with was dissolved by mutual consent as from the 1st day of August 1963. The business carried on by Jack Neary in partnership with Melvin Bruce and John Cockle under the same style or firm.
During his time as an elected Common Councillor he was Chairman of The City Central Markets Committee. The clock above the Smithfield Central Market was set in motion on 11th January 1995 after renovation by the Corporation of London as part of the Central Markets Refurbishment. Commissioned by the Corporation's then City Architect Horace Jones, the clock was first installed in 1870, two years after completion of the East and West Markets.

A plaque is affixed to the railings.

His wife Katherine is also a Freeman of The Company of Shipwrights.

Lieutenant Jack NEARY number EC281270 of Indian Artillery in Burma was Mentioned in Dispatches postedin London Gazette on 20th September 1945.


Download PDF of Jack Neary Election Address for the post of Sheriff. Includes his personal life, business career, WW2 War service in Burma as a Major. HERE

Buy & download Jack Neary MiD Citation here

*Geoffrey Perfect JP FCIOB; 1989/90

Geoffrey generously presented The Master Constructors Badge of Office to The Company in 1989.  Designed by Court Assistant David Tong, in 9ct yellow gold, square panel with matted ground, applied with the Constructors` Company crest in coloured enamels, and white gold, loop top and black enamel tapered terminal with ruby cabochon below, engraved to verso. Birmingham 1990 made by T Fattorini.

The Master`s Badge is the basic square shape of a building stone or marble representing the square mile of The City of London.  The four corner patterns representing the main disciplines of Architect, Engineer, Builder and Surveyor.  The original sixteen intermediates were meant to represent the other older Guilds connected with the construction industry.

Declaring the motto "Consructio Cum Honori" (Build with Honour).

It was during Geoffery`s year The Company received Letters Patent at The Mansion House from The Lord Mayor Sir Hugh Bidwell confirming the honor conferred in Jine 1989 By The Lord Mayor and Court of Aldermen.

It is very sad to report that Geoffrey Perfect died on August 22. During the war he served as an airframe fitter in the RAF, working on Lancasters and Spitfires. His greatest joy was on his birthday when he flew up his home valley in a rare two-seater Spitfire. After the war, he founded Perfect Homes. Geoffrey had a special love of racing and vintage cars. He served on many committees, all driven by his desire to put his Christian faith into practical action. He had been in addition a Wycombe JP, and was Vice-President of Penn and Tylers Green Cricket Club. We send our condolences to his family and friends.

*Kenneth Sidney Ansell Davis, ARIBA; 1990/91

Michael Osborne Pryce May FRSA; 1991/92  (Senior Past Master since 2014)

Above with Mrs Zanta May at The Installation Dinner

Richard Rooley, BAI FREng FICE FCIBSE; 1992/93

Richard founded the TEAMBUILD competition, originally called Build-a-building in 1990. He recognised that poor communication was the cause of numerous problems within the industry and so designed the competition to try and enhance those skills in young professionals. Richard has worked tirelessly on the organisation of the competition every year since.

Richard is a consulting engineer in London, in the fields of building services and project management. He also acts as an arbitrator, expert witness, and mediator in disputes. He has links to many institutions including acting as president of ASHRAE.

*Peter Olley, FICE FIStructE MICE MSocE(Fr); 1993/94

Peter Olley - National Service - from East London joined the Royal Air Force in 1955. After completing his training, he served in Wiltshire before being posted to RAF Honington in Suffolk, the home of the now famous V Bombers – Victor and Valiant. It was whilst based in Honington, he was tasked with making a plan of the base for use during a visit by a delegation from the Soviet Union. He recalls being asked to make sure that he missed off certain parts of the base that the visitors ‘didn’t need to know about’. He then completed a short tour in Turkey in readiness for the Suez Campaign but in the end was not called to go into action. Peter left the RAF in 1957.

*Denis Blackburn, FCIOB; 1994/95

May 2010 - The CIOB South East Branch and Hampshire Centre regret to have to record the passing of Dennis Blackburn, past Chair of both the Hampshire Centre and Southern Region as it then was.

Dennis had started his career as a Surveyor working through to Contracts Manager and Director of J M Jones Maidenhead. He then became Managing Director of Hawkins Construction Gosport. After working in construction for many years, he completed the remainder of his working life in his own business of Blackburn Management Services based in Winchester.

The South East Branch and Hampshire Centre of the CIOB regret to have to record the passing of Dennis Blackburn, past Chair of both the Hampshire Centre and Southern Region as it then was.

Dennis had started his career as a Surveyor working through to Contracts Manager and Director of J M Jones Maidenhead. He then became Managing Director of Hawkins Construction Gosport. After working in construction for many years, he completed the remainder of his working life in his own business of Blackburn Management Services based in Winchester.

He was well respected in many parts of our Industry and this was capped when he was invited to become an early member of The Worshipful Company of Constructors in the City Of London and again was elected the Master of this company for the years 1995/96.

Dennis remained committed to good practise and in particular those of our Members who needed advice had to look no further than Dennis.

His spare time was taken up with travel and a number of sporting pursuits.

At the recent thanksgiving service, quotes such as “nothing was too much trouble for him”, “everything was with energy and enthusiasm”, plus many more, were made.

Our thoughts are with Elsie, his wife and his family at this sad time. Dennis was 84 years old.

Anthony Appleton, BEd FRICS FCIOB; 1995/96 and former Learned Clerk.

*Philip Everett, FRICS; 1996/97

Above with Mrs Mary Everett at Drapers` Hall 1997

The Court of Philip Everett

*Robert Wharton, PPCIOB PPFB FHKIE MCIArb FAIC; 1997/98

Above with Mrs Gillian Wharton in October 1997

Robert Wharton formerly deputy chairman responsible for the worldwide activities of High-Point Schaer.

The Court of Robert Wharton



Peter Heath MA (Cantab) CEng FICE MCons E MSocCE(Fr)1998/99

The Court of Bob Heath



*David Hutchison MBE, BA RIBA FRSA; 1999/2000

Worked with Powell & Moya 1960-64 them with HLM from 1964 finally Chairman of HLM (formerly Hutchison Locke & Monk) untill 1992. HLM Architects Ltd, HLM Planning Ltd, HLM Landscape Ltd; founder and senior director Moloney O'Beirne Hutchison Partnership Dublin 1977-, fndr and sr ptnr David Hutchison Partnership 1992- (architect St James Hosp Dublin, Royal London Hosp redevelopment, Barry Hosp, Chepstow Hosp, Hammersmith Hosp, Sixth Form Coll Farnborough, St John's Sch Marlborough, Broomfield Hosp Chelmsford, Royal London Hosp redevelopment, Royal Marsden Hosp, Princess Alexandra Hosp Harlow, Aldershot Hosp, Frenchay Hosp, Weston Hosp, Torbay Hosp, Nevill Hall Hosp, Monmouth Hosp); architect for major public sector cmmns in health and civic authorities 1964-88; health projects (hosps) incl: Bournemouth, Cheltenham, Ealing, Whipps Cross, Lister, Northern Gen Sheffield, Medway, Dunfermline West Fife, Liverpool Maternity, Royal Brompton London, Nottingham City, Guy's, N Middx; civic projects: Surrey Heath BC, Broxbourne BC, Daventry DC, Colchester BC, Waltham Forest Cncl, Macclesfield Cncl, Epsom and Ewell Cncl, Reigate and Banstead Cncl, Stoke-on-Trent Cncl, Stroud Cncl, North Staffs Cncl, schs in Redditch, Bristol and Bath; cmmns: Univs of Reading and Surrey, Smithfield Market Corp of London; winner: int competition (architecture) Paisley Civic Centre 1964, 7 Civic Trust Awards DOE Good Housing Award, RIBA Architecture Commendation, Redland Roof Tile Award, RIBA Energy Award, Concrete Soc Architecture Award; nat seat on Cncl RIBA 1987-93, assessor Civic Trust; Freeman: City of London 1977, Worshipful Company of Constructors 1977, Worshipful Company of Arbitrators 1987

John Burrell, BSc MICE; 2000/01

Above with Mrs Michele Burrell at Drapers` Hall April 2001

*Paul Lacey FICE FIStructE FIHT, FRSA, FFB; 2001/02

Chartered Engineer, Fellow of Institution of Civil Engineers , Fellow of Institution of Structural Engineers, Fellow of Institution of Highways and Transportation, Fellow Royal Society of Arts, Fellow of Faculty of Building

John Robson, JP FRICS; 2002/03

David Hattersley, MBE BSc(Eng) FCGI FICE FCMI; 2003/04

David has had a lifetime’s career in national civil engineering contracting – much of it in project management until in 1993 he set out on his own as Construction Marketing Consultancy. He has been an active member of the British Institute of Management and the Institution of Civil Engineers, is a Fellow of the City & Guilds Institute.

*Peter Knight, FRICS FCILA ACII ACIArb FRSH; 2004/05

A larger than life former Buntingford deputy mayor who ran businesses in the town and headed up the town’s Scouts has died aged 67.

Peter Knight was born in Bishop’s Stortford in 1944, attending schools in the town and was county diving champion at 14. The youngest qualified Scout master at 18, Peter spent time in America running scout camps.

He started working life as a quantity surveyor for Herts County Council, marrying Diana Dedman in 1965. The couple had three children together, Andrew, Jacqueline and Jonathan. Andrew tragically died in a road accident aged four. Moving to Westland Green outside Little Hadham in 1977, he later qualified as a chartered loss adjuster.

He opened a branch of his surveying and valuing business Knight & Co. into Buntingford’s Red House on High Street in 1985. Soon after, a history in scouting re-emerged and Peter found himself as the town’s group Scout leader, later organising a one-off family camp in Little Court, on The Causeway.

In 1993, he started estate agency Churchills from the same premises with Alan Brown. Peter ran for the town council in 1995, serving for three years as councillor and finishing off as deputy mayor.

The same year he bought a hotel in Lowestoft coast which he and Diane transformed into the Flying Fifteens tea room. After stepping down from the council he was also involved in setting up the Town Centre Management Team with John Warren, becoming chairman in its first year.

Peter was appointed President of The Insurance Benevolent and Orphans Funds at the 1997 AGM which was held at The Insurance Hall on 22 July. The Funds give vital financial support and practical advice to insurance people and their dependent relatives.

He also gained freedom of the City of London in the 1970s, also serving as president of the National Insurance Charities as well as Master of the Worshipful Company of Constructors.

In September, he saw the conclusion of 20 years of fundraising that started on his watch materialise in the form of the new Buntingford Scout hut.

He died of a heart attack on Christmas Eve. Peter was be laid to rest today at Epping Forest Funeral Park, North Weald.

He is survived by his second wife Catherine, his children Jacqueline and Jonathan and four grandchildren. - December 2011

*Bob Craig FCIOB MCIArb MaPS; 2005/06

*Bob Craig FCIOB MCIArb MaPS; 2005/06

Sadly we lost Bob but here above Bob is shown at his Livery and Awards Dinner in February 2006 with The Mistress Georgina and The Wardens and their ladies

John Trussler PPCIOB FRICS Hon AIC FRSA; 2006/07

Above right with his wife Anne.

John Trussler PPCIOB FRICS Hon AIC FRSA; 2006/07

Above right with his wife Anne.

Martin Wade FRICS, FCIOB; 2007/08

Above right with his wife Janet.

A Chartered Surveyor and a Chartered Builder, Martin was an equity partner in private practice for many years, working not only in the UK but also in Continental Europe, North America, North Africa and Asia Pacific providing project and cost management services to a wide range of international clients.

Martin is a Past President of the RICS Quantity Surveyors' Division and also chaired the Institution's International Committee for a number of years - which led on the successful globalisation of the Chartered Surveying profession. He has been a director St. Albans Enterprise Agency for nearly 25 years, helping in the development of some 30,000 square feet of office accommodation for start up businesses in the area, and as chairman of Harpenden Cricket Club was responsible for rebuilding its ground some 15 years ago.

Martin is married to Janet and has two children; Deborah, a senior paediatric nurse at Great Ormond Street, and Simon, a commercial property lawyer in London's West End.

Roger Adcock FCIOB FFB: 2008/09

Above with his wife Tina taken in Mansion House.

After qualifying as a Quantity Surveyor he subsequently joined Mansell Plc where over a period of 16 years and after a succession of operational board appointments he achieved the position of Group Managing Director. After 4 years as GMD, Roger moved to Amey Plc as Managing Director of Amey Building and Amey Projects and a member of Plc Executive Committees. For the last ten years (1999 - 2009) Roger has been a Director of Killby & Gayford Ltd, a business established over 150 years ago in The City specialising in Restoration, Refurbishment and Fitting Out. Now he is a non-executive Director. Apart from his livery interests, Roger was a member of Round Table for eighteen years leaving the RTBI organisation as National Honorary Secretary. He is also a Liveryman of The Worshipful Company of Masons and a member of The Bridge Ward Club, Little Ship Club and The City Livery Club.

Of recent times Roger is an elected Trustee of The Chartered Institute of Building and a Trustee of the charity Teambuild.

Dr Christine Rigden BSc PhD FGS CGeol  2009/10

Above with her husband Stephen taken at Drapers Hall

Dr Christine Rigden (seen here above with her gentleman husband and Constructors` Renter Warden Stephen Rigden. Stephen is to be known as "Her Gentleman") was born on 7th January 1965 in County Durham, and raised in King’s Lynn, Norfolk. She attended The University of Sheffield, graduating with a BSc in Geology in 1986 and a PhD in Materials in 1990, with research topic concentrating on the use of industrial waste products as partial replacements for cement in concrete. Following a move to London Christine joined Queen Mary College, London University, as a Lecturer in Geomaterials in 1992. Here she was able to combine her academic interests in geology and cements with research focussed on the use of geological materials in the construction industry, especially in the materials properties and durability of concrete and building stone. During this time Christine was also much involved in the Geological Society of London, serving two four year terms on their Council and one term as an Honorary Secretary.

Dr Rigden moved to Canterbury in 2000 and joined Stephen Rigden at Project Management and Design Services Limited, a small civil and structural engineering consultancy. Christine and Stephen married in 2006 and sold PMDS Ltd the following year, both retaining the position of company Directors.

Dr Rigden’s involvement in the City began shortly after moving to London, on becoming a Freeman and Liveryman of the Constructors in 1993. Christine was elected the first lady Master Constructor in September 2009 and installed on 14th October 2009. Christine is also a member of the Masons Company, becoming a Freeman and Liveryman in 2008 and being appointed a Steward in 2009. Dr Rigden is also one of the elected Officers of the City of London, having been elected as an Ale Conner since 2007.

Patricia Newton BSc (Hons Arch), Dip (Hons) Arch, RIBA, FFB, FBAE, FRSA 2010/2011

Above top right with her husband Richard.

"It is a great honour to have been elected as your 34th Master Constructor of the Worshipful Company of Constructors. I follow in the footsteps of Dr. Christine Ridgen who has paved the way for the females in the Company, by becoming the first Lady Master since our inception! I was born in Central London in 1960 and for those who do not know, I am half Italian, with roots firmly embedded in Northern Italy. I was schooled and raised in London and Italy and graduated from the University of North London with a Batchelor of Science in Architecture followed by a Postgraduate Diploma in Architecture and became a Chartered Architect in 1989.

My professional career took me into other areas such as Expert Witness work, culminating in becoming a Member of the British Academy of Experts and being one of the first wave of students to attend the MSc course at Kings College in Construction Law and Arbitration in 1993. Having worked for several large International Practices, I fulfilled one of my lifelong ambitions, that of running my own practice, which I set up in 2001, and which I now run with my husband Richard who is a Chartered Surveyor. We spend most of our time commuting between our offices in London, Hertfordshire and Ipswich, but will be based in London for the year ahead. I am also a member of the Faculty of Building and a fellow of the Royal Society of Arts. My first involvement in the City Livery life came in 1995, when I became a Freeman of the City of London and a Livery member shortly after. I have always been a keen participator in all the organisations and of the clubs that I have been a part of, and am also a member of the City Livery Club and Candlewick Ward Club.

I am also a Dame Commander of the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre, of one of the few remaining and recognised Papal Orders, working closely with the Latin Patriarch, the Order assists with the reconstruction and provision of schools in Palestine. In addition to this, I have also pursued a very active sporting career throughout my life and have only recently had to “hang up my boots” from playing Netball. I am proud to have represented, three Counties, played at Regional level and attended England trials along the way. I am also passionate about Education, and have been a School Governor for over 10 years at St. Edmunds College in Ware."


Mr Doug Barrat FCIOB FRSA 2011/2012

The Master seen here with his wife Mrs Lesley Barrat.

The Master’s Message:

"I have two very important requests, and I sincerely hope that you can help.

Firstly Charity

The Charitable Trust and all it does is such an important part of what we do as a Company and there are a number of you who do give regularly, and I thank you most sincerely and I know that you will not mind that you are included in this message to the Company Membership, but there are also quite a number that do not yet contribute on that basis.

We live in particularly difficult times with considerable business and personal financial pressures, but there are many whose plight we could not begin to imagine, and what we are able to distribute from within our own Charitable purse helps make a difference. Therefore I am asking those who are not yet regular contributors to consider doing so. A very modest £10 a month would make such a difference, please give it some serious thought, all you need do is to down load the forms from the web site or ask the Clerk to forward them to you.

I thank you in advance for those who feel they can help with my request.

Secondly Membership

I state the obvious that membership is the life blood of the Company and continues to be pursued. Sadly over the last year a number of members have passed away and we have lost members who have felt unable to continue for various reasons, so I would like to set ourselves a recruitment challenge by asking every member to find a new member. We have a few members who have over a number of years introduced many marvellous men and women into our Company, they have built up terrific momentum and I would like to see more of us helping to find new Constructors. Use the Web Site in your recruitment efforts, potential new members will get a lot of useful information on all aspects of our life in the Company and will hopefully encourage interest in the Livery.

Many of you do so much for the Company and I thank you sincerely. I hope that I will see as many of you as possible as can join us for lunch at the Vintners’ Hall on 8 December and at the Carol Service afterwards at St James Garlickhythe which is right opposite Vintners` Hall."

Mr Stephen R Rigden BSc MSc CEng MICE MCMI 2012 / 2013

Alan J Longhurst BSc BArch RIBA seen here with Mrs Lee Longhurst

Educated at Whitgift School in Croydon then The Welsh School of Architecture in Cardiff.

Intitally worked with The South East Thames Regiopnal Health Authority before joning the Croydon based company of Howard Fairbairn & Partners in 1984.  Now the Senior Director at Howard Fairbairn MHK ( based in Croydon.

A Liveryman of The Company from 1998, he is also Chairman of the Croydon, Sutton & Bromley Branch RIBA. Sport in all its forms including Golf, Cricket and his beloved Crystal Palace FC "The Eagles". Married for over 30 years to Lee they have a Daughter Faye and Son Anthony.

A Message from the Master

The Master’s message this year is being written over halfway through my year, so like other Masters before I not only feel proud to serve as the Company’s 37th Master but also have a direct understanding of the pleasure and privileges that this brings.

It also is clear that although the company at 38 years old is one of the more modern of modern livery companies, through the effort and insight of my predecessors the Constructors have an established place within the livery and this is reflected in the quantity and diversity of events that the Constructor’s Master has the honour to attend and represent our company.

I am therefore delighted to be able to thank the previous masters and in particular Stephen Rigden whose vision and work in raising the profile of the Constructors within the city we will continue to benefit for many years. For example, this year we had for the first time the opportunity to present at the Guildhall a gift to the new Lord Mayor, an honour not available to all companies.

For my year I have adopted as my theme the work of our charitable trust.  We have an excellent team of trustees whose integrity and prudent management of the funds has placed us in a strong position.  My intention has been not only to continue to do all I can to grow the size of our charitable trust but also to help better disseminate information about its achievements and future objectives as growth brings opportunities for the trust to do more.

I was born in Hitchin but soon after my parents moved to Surrey where I have continued to live.  Both my parents were pharmacists, my mother within the NHS and my father in retail pharmacy.  They met at Kings College in Chelsea being contemporaries due to my father’s time in service during the war.

After starting at state school I was accepted at Whitgift School in Croydon, a town which I still live in today.  Through some process I still don’t fully understand I ended up taking pure maths, applied maths, physics, chemistry and geology at A Level.  The latter I had to drop due to missing  six months of sixth form through a sporting injury and the remainder I realised were not where my interest lay so after A Levels I went to the Welsh School of Architecture in Cardiff emerging into a construction industry in the depth of a recession in the 1970’s.  Via the NHS architects’ department I joined Howard Fairbairn and Partners in 1978, eventually becoming senior partner and then director of Howard Fairbairn MHK.

In 1983 I married a landscape architect called Lee Gardner, the daughter of a quantity surveyor.  We have two children, a daughter Faye who works in HR, when she is not travelling around the world and a son Anthony who is a marketing analyst for a publishing company.

This year we have a mixture of familiar halls for our principle functions together with some new venues for other events.  The size of the company means that we generally have to look to the bigger halls.  Stationers’ has always been a favourite hall of mine, Carpenters’  is the venue for the awards dinner and Merchant Taylors for the Sir Christopher Wren Banquet will bring back memories of the Charter Award Dinner 3 years ago.

Trinity House is a new company venue and has been selected for our companion’s lunch and Ironmongers’ hall has become home for our regular lunch club which is an innovation for this year.

The Master’s Weekend is to be held in Cardiff due to my connection with the Welsh School of Architecture.

Cardiff is a city transformed from the post industrial decline evident during my time at university, to a modern and vibrant European city well worth a visit to see the transformation of Cardiff Bay with new civic and commercial buildings.  Our dinner will be held in the banqueting hall of Cardiff Castle, surely one of the most lovely such halls and the finest example of the work of architect William Burges.

Charitable giving remains a corner stone of our Company.  This year’s fundraising event will be a golf day at Sundridge Park in Bromley.  For many years I have been responsible for our company day so I much appreciate the offer of liverymen

Melville Dunbar and John Sayers to organise this year’s event and use it to raise funds for our charitable trust.

Lee and I look forward to our year ahead.  We have received tremendous support from the company which we much appreciate.  In accordance with tradition we will arrange a summer party to be held at the Old Whitgiftians Cricket ground in Croydon where together we can enjoy some food, music, cricket and champagne.


The Master for 2014 / 2015 Victoria Russell LLB, FCIArb, FCIOB, FFB with husband Mr Steve Lawrence

Victoria was educated at Benenden School, Kent, and the University of Exeter.  She is a construction and engineering solicitor with over 30 years specialist experience and particular expertise in all forms of dispute resolution.
She is a partner in Fenwick Elliott LLP, the largest specialist construction law practice in the UK, and is also a practising arbitrator, adjudicator and mediator.
Victoria is a former Chairman of the Society of Construction Law and former President of the European Society of Construction Law.  She was Master of the Worshipful Company of Arbitrators from 2001-2002 and is on the Committee of the Golden Jubilee Masters Association.  Victoria is also a Liveryman of the City of London Solicitors’ Company, a member of the Livery Committee and Chairman of its Livery Companies Working Group, Candlewick Ward Club and the City Livery Club.  She is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Building, Fellow of the Forum of the Built Environment and Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators.
Victoria is married to Steve Lawrence and lives in Hammersmith.  They have two sons; one is a zoologist and the other is majoring in history at Princeton.
She is a season ticket holder at Fulham Football Club, a volunteer with, and facilities co-ordinator at, the West London Churches Homeless Concern, and on the Management Committee of the Sulgrave Club for Young People in Shepherd’s Bush.

 Master Victoria Russell with her Wardens.

The Master for 2015/16 - Graeme Monteith BSc (Hons) CEng FICE

A message from the Master.

I am privileged to have become the 39th Master of this Worshipful Company. Little did I think on the day of my joining the Freedom that I would end up in this position! All Masters say how honoured they are to be Master, but that is only because it is true.

My aim for the year is to continue the excellent work done by my predecessors in raising the profile of our Company. Talking to Masters and Wardens of other Companies it is clear that we are ‘on the radar’, especially amongst some of the long established Livery Companies whose Livery lifespan is measured in centuries rather than our mere 25 years!

My task in this is made so much easier by the fact that Sheriff Dr Christine Rigden’s Mother Company is the Constructors. During her Shrieval year the Constructors will be represented at several high profile events which they would not otherwise have been. We all owe a great deal to Christine.

I have thought hard about a theme for my year but at the end of the day I will adopt Immediate Past Master Victoria Russell’s one of Fellowship but perhaps without the “bling”! The reason I became a Constructor was fellowship and it is the theme that I always use with potential new members – being a Constructor is fun!

But it is fun with a purpose as we raise substantial sums from our events for our Charitable Trust to help others.

Master 2016/17 - Ian Mason FCIOB

A message from the Master.

It is a great honour to have been elected as the 40th Master of this Worshipful Company of Constructors what a a privilege it is in representing the Company within the City and beyond, following in the footsteps of those Masters that have gone before.

For my year as Master I’ve chosen the theme of “Apprenticeships, Mentoring and Membership”. Like many Livery Companies our biggest challenge is to encourage and recruit new and younger women and men to become initially Apprentices, then Yeomen and move on to be a Freeman with a swift transfer to the position of Liveryman. Therefore, during my year I am looking for the Company to develop our apprenticeship, mentoring and membership programs to achieve an increase in our core membership. I will also seek, on behalf of the Company, to provide further awards and scholarships, which will continue to expand our current commitment and thereby continue to enhance our standing within the City Livery community.

These days, there are many demands on everyone’s disposable income and I know how important it is to communicate the incomes, outcomes and the impact of the charitable giving and support of our Charitable Trust and the Masters and Wardens Fund.

I will during the year attempt to make this information more readily available to all members on how and where the resources are used to encourage and increase the level of individual giving and support.

Communication will also be at the forefront of my year, with a newly designed website, use of social media, briefing forums, presentations and events for the younger members on topical and relevant subjects.

I have some exciting events planned for this year. The Master’s weekend will be held in Guernsey and I anticipate during the year a wide range of evening and day visits.