Members of The Chelsea Society and their guests will make a private visit to Vintners’ Hall. at 68 Upper Thames Street, London EC4V 3BG at 10.30 for 10.45am – 12.30pm
The Vintners’ Company is one of the Twelve Great Livery Companies of the City of London. The current site was bequeathed to the Company in 1446, and its history is a fascinating story of trade, charity, politics and companionship. The wine trade was of great importance to the medieval economy – between 1446 and 1448 wine made up nearly one-third of England’s entire import trade. The Vintner’s Company presided over this trade by authority of its first Royal Charter granted in 1363,. Because of its connections with royalty, Vintners is one of only two City companies to own swans on the Thames and participates in Swan-upping (an annual ceremony on the Thames in which mute swans on the river are rounded up, examined, ringed and then released).
Although the social and economic traditions that gave birth to the Vintners’ Company have long since been overtaken by the development of industry and commerce, the Company continues to flourish and has forged a new and valuable role for itself as an integral part of the wine trade in twenty-first century Britain. In 1973 the Company was granted a new Charter which authorised the it to establish the Wine Standards Board which was responsible for the implementation of EU wine legislation. Vintners’ Hall is known as the Wine Trade’s “spiritual home”.
The visit will be accompanied by Guy Fairbank, who is a well known London blue badge guide and is himself a Liveryman of the Vintners’ Company.
Tickets: (for members and their guests only) £20 from the Box Office at the Cadogan Hall, 3 Sloane Terrace, London, SW1X 9DQ in person (Monday – Saturday 10am – 6pm (Sunday 12 noon – 6pm – performance days only) or by phone 0207-730-4500 (booking not available online). A charge is made by Cadogan Hall for card payments so it is better to book in person, or by post, with cheque payable to Cadogan Hall.