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Apprentice19 starts today at Guildhall and it is great to know that individual Stationers are there supporting Past Master Helen Esmonde, Chairman of the Education Committee, who has been instrumental in organising the event and indeed to see that Corporate Member Pearson who are great advocates of apprenticeships are there too.  One of the people on their stand is Freeman Ned Coomes, Senior media Producer,  who was apprenticed to Court Assistant Kit van Tulleken and he, together with one of the current digital marketing apprentices, Rebecca Davidson, (seen on the far left), will be bringing the potential of apprenticeships in the publishing sector to as many young people as possible. The Master and the Clerk visited the Pearson stand and can be seen in the photo with Freeman Anne Ashworth who is Head of Employee Apprenticeships at Pearson.  From L-R, Rebecca Davidson, Digital Marketing Apprentice, Freeman Anne Ashworth, the Master, Freeman Ned Coomes and the Clerk

Earlier the Clerk was snapped with Past Master Richard Brewster and the Master (from L-R),.  

Master Richard B and Clerk


No doubt over the course of the two days more photos will emerge!

At the Master and Wardens' Meeting on 17 June the Master made Christopher Jones (see photo) free of the Company. Christopher is a consultant with Novalia Ltd based in Cambridge. Chris was also accompanied to the Hall by his wife and young son who took great interest in the architecture of the Hall and indeed of the buildings we passed on the way to Guildhall to make Chris's application for Freedom of the City. They were last seen getting to grips with the range of styles of the buildings in the Courtyard at Guildhall!

At the Court meeting on 4 June the Master cloathed two new Liverymen.  They were  (from left to right in the photo)

Mark Purcell  Associate Director for Research Collections at Cambridge University Library and Tyler Carey, Chief Revenue Officer for Westchester Publishing Services.  We congratulate them both and look forward to their continuing attendance at events. 

Liveryman Christopher Leonard-Morgan writes: 

Freeman Henri Davis, immediate past Chairman and current Deputy Chairman of the Giftware Association, was recently presented with the prestigious Honorary Achievement Award at the annual Gift Retailer Awards at the Grosvenor House in London.

Henri has been an Independent Retail Advisor for the last fifteen years in the stationery, cards, gift and heritage sectors working mainly with SMEs such as card retailer Scribbler, stationery and cards suppliers Tollit and Harvey (now called ExaClair), Laura Stoddart and Berni Parker Designs, and the Royal Mint.

Previously she worked as a buyer and in NPD for Habitat, Next, WHSmith and the National Trust.

She is often invited to speak at conferences and exhibitions and on radio, and has also appeared on television as an advisor on The Apprentice.

Congratulations, Henri!


Court Assistant Tim Connell writes:

An exhibition at the Guildhall Library has just opened concerning the life and times of the Elizabethan financier Sir Thomas Gresham, who was the financial adviser to four Tudor monarchs (without losing his head). He founded the Royal Exchange and brought a great deal of trade to London and when he died left his money to create Gresham College, which still offers a full range of free  lectures to the public. 

Less known is his Library, which is now housed at the Guildhall. Key bibliographical treasures on display cover a period from the 15th to the 19th centuries. They include a copy of Shakespeare's Fourth Folio, a range of early travel books ranging from Chile to China and items by the 17th Century polymath and Gresham Professor Robert Hooke whose illustration of a flea is shown above,  (This image comes from from Hooke's early experiments with a microscope, published in his Micrographia of 1665 and was taken from Wellcome Images, a website operated by Wellcome Trust, a global charitable foundation based in the United Kingdom.)

For more information contact the Exhibition organiser Court Assistant Professor Tim Connell on <>.

Copy by Freeman Francesca Albini

On 23 May a group of Stationers had the rare opportunity to visit the Paul Getty Library at Wormsley, in the Chiltern Hills. After being escorted through the idyllic estate, which includes what is said to be one of the most beautiful cricket grounds in the world, we reached the building that houses the Library – a castellated extension to the main house built with local flint, which fits seamlessly in its environments. The inside of the library is also impressive, the heads of two giant 10,000 year old extinct deer with enormous antlers, busts of 20th Century writers, a starry ceiling that shows the sky over Genoa the day Paul Getty was born, and a clock which is not a clock but a wind marker attached to the wind vane on the roof, which swings around over a map of the estate. But our main focus, obviously, were the books, and Robert Harding of Maggs, the Antiquarian Book Dealers, and fellow Stationer, was our expert guide.

Sir John Paul Getty started collecting books as a young man mostly because he wanted to read 20th century fiction, such as Scott Fitzgerald, and had to go to second hand bookshops in order to find them. In his visits he encountered the earlier editions and got to appreciate the paper, the type and the bindings. Out of that grew a passion for the Art of the Book, or, as our guide defined it, the ‘book beautiful’. Getty’s collection grew to represent the Art of the Book in all its aspects, from medieval illumination and calligraphy, to the beginning of printing, through to modern calligraphy, 20th century designers, book illustrations, and the best and rarest book bindings.

In the main library room, over a number of tables, a display of books was laid open, or showing their magnificent covers, for our perusal. One of the most typographically beautiful books of the 15th century, the Hypnerotomachia Poliphili, sat next to an incredible Ptolemy printed on vellum, open at the British Isles, with a sparkling blue sea made of ground lapis lazuli.

On another table there were examples of printing from the very beginning of print, including a section of the Gutenberg Bible, with the Sermon of the Mount. There was also a wonderful Boccaccio, the first book to be illustrated with copperplate engravings, printed in Bruges by Colard Mansion – who taught Caxton.

A glass cabinet held the finest copy in private hands of Caxton’s Chaucer, the first book printed in England, next to the first Shakespeare Folio, published in 1623. Opposite there was a great Kelmscott Press Chaucer, printed by William Morris, and illustrated by Burne-Jones. Both Chaucers were open at the beginning of The Wife of Bath’s Tale for comparison.

We saw extraordinary French Livres d’Artistes and English designer bindings of the 20th century, wonderful medieval manuscripts, including a fragment of a leaf from 8th century Northumberland. Also, a table with splendid examples of modern calligraphy.

There was a little show of gardening books, including Humphrey Repton’s designs with flaps that lift up.

For many of us, though, the favourite display was a selection of small almanacs and books of psalms printed for and sold by the Stationers, including a Freemason’s Calendar, bound for the Prince of Wales, George.

Many congratulations to Past Master Nick Steidl whose image "Vague form 1" has been selected for the 2019 Royal Academy of Arts Summer Exhibition. Nick writes:

A few weeks after stepping down as Master last July, Louise and I decided to go on a City Break and take minimal luggage. So sadly I left my Nikon & Leica at home and flew to Copenhagen with just an iPhone 7. On one of our tours – on the canals – I saw this distorted red ladder hanging down into the water and took a photo of it. Later on in our hotel room I merged another image with it and edited the result all on my phone. So “Vague Form 1” (see below) came to life.


Vague Form 1


I have been trying to get a photo into the RA Summer Exhibition for over ten years and including this year I have been shortlisted three times in the last five years – so it really is third time lucky!

For those not familiar with this annual exhibition, the RA accepts the first 12,000 submission digitally and whittle this down to 4,000 which then have to be physically brought into its Piccadilly warehouse below Burlington House. These are then judged and reduced to 1000/1200 for hanging in the final exhibition. Of these, in the past, not more than about 40 are actually photography. That is why I am chuffed.

This stunning photo will be on display at the Royal Academy from 10 June to 12 August and you can access their website for details of tickets, times, etc, here



At the Master and Wardens' meeting on 20 May 2019 the Master brought two new Freemen into the Company.  They were (from L-R in the photo):


Sam Woods a Director of Acclaim Handling Limited and Sidonie Warren a Director of Papersmiths. 

We congratulate them on their new status as Freemen of the Company and look forward to welcoming them to events at the Hall 

Mike Paterson, Director of London Historians, has written a blog about the once proposed livery hall for the Company of Newspaper Makers. You can read the blog here. Members will remember that an image of how the building was going to look was used as part of the promotional material for this year's Archive Evening which Mike attended. It is a stunning image of what would have been a stunning building and worth showing again here!

NMC Brochure


It was published as the cover of a  brochure, c 1931, documenting the constitution of the Newspaper Makers Company and the plans for constructing a Company Hall. The tower of the new Hall was to ‘rise to a height of 277 feet [approx. 84m] from the pavement’, which would have made it the highest commercial building in the City of London at the time.  It is odd to think that it would today be well and truly looked down upon by the new generation of tall buildings in The City many of which are more than double that height!

The Hall was absolutely full for the Charter Dinner which took place on 1 May 2019.  This annual event which celebrates the granting of the Royal Charter in 1557 always features a guest speaker and this year was no exception with Christian May, Editor in Chief of City AM (see photo), addressing members and their guests.  This year the Company was also absolutely delighted to welcome the CCF unit from Stationers' Crown Woods who provided the carpet guard - the first of many such visits we hope.   

The Worshipful Company
of Stationers
and Newspaper Makers

Stationers' Hall
Ave Maria Lane
London EC4M 7DD

Telephone: 020 7248 2934
Fax: 020 7489 1975