Brigantes Winter Gathering, York

On a cold Friday 15th of  December, the Brigantes Winter Gathering took place in York. The Brigantes are, as you all know, a very worthwhile and - rightly - ever more popular organisation, designed to involve Liverymen across the Liveries who otherwise would not be able to get to Livery functions in London.
An intrepid sprinkling of Bakers went from London to York to enjoy the occasion. There were also Bakers who live in the North. In fact, there were representatives of over forty Worshipful Companies, present. Just over 160 of us.
The evening began with a reception and supper in the stunning timber framed Merchant Adventurers Hall, the home to the Company of Merchant Adventurers of the City of York since 1357. We progressed from there on foot to York Minster where we had seats for a Christmas Carol Concert. It was a memorable event with a mixture of carols sung by the audience (‘audience’ not congregation because, as we were told, this was a concert and not a service and so clapping was allowed), carols sung by the Choir of York Minster and music supplied variously by the Yorkshire Volunteers Band and Corps of Drums as well as the organ. And there were humorous and not so humorous readings by Miriam Margolyes and Sir Mark Elder. All performed superbly.  
And then many of the Brigantians and others from the South repaired to the hotel where many of us stayed, to warm up with a nightcap and to chat, illustrating the good fellowship of the Livery Movement. 
Huge thanks are due to the four organisers of the Gathering: Adrian Waddingham CBE, Sheriff 2013/14 and Past Master Actuary; Charles Cowling, Past Master Actuary; our very own David Bentley, Past Master Baker; and Nick Gale, Past Master Plumber. They - and in particular David Bentley - did a great deal of work to make sure that the occasion went smoothly and enjoyably. It certainly did.
Next will be the Brigantes Breakfast in the Royal Armouries in Leeds on Friday 25th May 2018. That, I’m sure, will be another grand occasion. Not to be missed!
Stephen Kramer
Master, the Worshipful Company of Bakers