Members may be interested to know that the Company has not been archiving minutes of the Court Meeting since February 2005 when my predecessor stopped the process to investigate the possibility of modernising it. Prior to this point we had been using a calligrapher to transcribe the minutes into beautiful vellum-bound books which go back continuously to 1571.
I have been looking into this and have concluded that we should re-start the process and catch up on the backlog. The problem with printing the minutes is that laser-printer and ink-jet inks are only guaranteed for 70 years and we need a solution which will continue a 400+ year old tradition for another 400 years! At last week's Master & Wardens' Meeting and at today's Court Meeting, my conclusion was endorsed and I plan to start catching up the backlog starting next month.
The trouble is that the process isn't cheap. A blank book, that will cover around 8 years of minutes, will cost around £1,700 and the transcription costs £30 a page. I am sure that the Company can cover the costs of transcribing the minutes going forward but the backlog will cost around £10,000 and this is a lot to swallow.
I therefore wonder whether there are any members out there who might be interested in helping cover the costs of the backlog. Such members will be acknowledged in the Court minutes with a special mention that together they subscribed to complete the exercise. I know that the new Master will be mentioning this when he writes to everyone in the autumn but I thought that I might flag up the request in this blog to see if there are any generous donors out there. If you are interested in donating towards the cost of this work, which is vital to the continuous recording of our Company's history, please email me at email@example.com.
Thank you in anticipation.