Societies are a way for Liverymen to take part in a range of activities and enjoy the fun and fellowship that goes with it.
There are a number of clubs and societies associated with The Worshipful Company of Butchers. Here, we find out a little more about them. Will you get involved?
"Shooting", in its various forms, is a very popular sport within The Worshipful Company of Butchers. Indeed, this has been the case for a number of years with Liverymen and their families participating and enjoying taking part. Members join in as and when there’s an event they can participate in.
The role of the Shooting Society is to help foster a sense of fellowship and camaraderie among Liverymen and we seek to do this by organising and running a number of events throughout the year. There are no joining costs; those involved in a competition pay their own entry fees which on occasion includes clays, cartridges and refreshments.
We try to hold our events at different shooting grounds around the country and are open to everyone. We set out to attract a cross section of new, as well as existing members by catering for people of different levels of ability and experience.
Those taking part at a shooting ground or school, do not require a gun licence, and can usually use a gun supplied by the shooting ground or school.
The most fiercely contested competition among Livery Companies in the shooting calendar is The Inter Livery Clay Pigeon Shooting Competition, organised by The Worshipful Company of Environmental Cleaners - usually in May. We are delighted to report that the team from The Worshipful Company of Butchers has won the trophy and taken the accolade on more than one occasion in the past.
Bisley, which is the home of British shooting sports, hosts 'The Bucks & Does' competition run by The Worshipful Company of Horners. Bisley is also the venue for the multidisciplinary competition run by The Worshipful Company of Bakers, which includes both rifles and black powder weapons.
During the 'closed season' this is mainly when the clay pigeon shooting events take place. The opportunity to enjoy an event with friends and colleagues with some added competition is an ideal mix.
Each year there is a clay pigeon shooting competition held at the West Kent Shooting School, usually in early May. This is a good introduction for those who have not shot before or are new to the sport, as those competing in the 'novice' class receive tuition from qualified instructors while shooting. The novice class is 'handicapped' to give entrants an opportunity to win a trophy.
All our events are a great networking day-out, well catered and made all the more enjoyable by the welcome, enthusiasm and warm hospitality of all the staff. We are keen to grow the numbers of Liverymen and family members taking part in the spirit of fellowship, whatever their level of experience or ability, please get in touch - our aim is to ensure that everyone has a good time.
The role of the society, which is is open to all Liverymen or those allied to the meat industry, is to develop, enjoy and enhance the sense of comradeship and fellowship that exists in the Livery through playing and enjoying a round of golf with kindred spirits.
The society’s Captain, Vice-captain and other committee members are elected at the AGM held in February or March when the specific intentions of the society for the forthcoming year are agreed, in a convivial atmosphere, over a relaxed lunch.
We sincerely hope to resume holding these meetings at Butchers’ Hall as soon as possible.
The society comprises 32 members; about a third of whom actively involve themselves in tournament play. We’re pleased that other, less active members participate in the AGM or join us for lunch or dinner at golfing events.
We’re actively seeking to encourage new members and, with a £20 annual subscription, appeal to all Liverymen with an interest in golf to consider joining us.
We host two formal events a year; a spring one and an autumn meeting. Geographically, and to provide the most convenient access, we tend to use one north and the other south of the M25 as the venues. Choice of location is at the discretion of the Captain and has, in recent years, featured courses such as Gerrards Cross, Hadley Wood, Brookmans Park and West Herts to the north and The Addington, Sundridge Park, Kingswood and Royal Blackheath in the south. On occasion we’ve also played at The Royal Berkshire, Leeds, Bishop’s Stortford and Saffron Walden.
Society Golf Meetings
Events usually involve 18 holes of competitive golf played using the full stableford handicap system and invariably involves lunch or dinner. Previous contributions and donations give the society a number of trophies to award with all standards of golfer having the opportunity to challenge for a prize…. plus a little something from the Captain’s wine cellar!
In addition, the society participates in a number of other competitions, either on behalf of the Livery Company or for charitable causes. These include:
Prince Arthur Cup
The society represents WCB in the inter-livery Prince Arthur Cup, the largest amateur tournament in the United Kingdom.
Held at Walton Heath Golf Club every May, this prestigious competition sees groupings from 54 Livery Companies challenge for the impressive silver gilt trophy presented to the Coachmakers’ Livery Company by then Master Arthur Pollen Hungerford commemorating the admission to the Coachmakers of Prince Arthur of Connaught.
WCB are jointly the fifth most successful Livery Company having achieved four wins – the inaugural 1927 competition, a shared first prize in 1929 and much more recently in 2004 and 2006. Although we have some way to go to catch the 11-times winners the Leathersellers. We only trail the Solicitors, the Stationers and Newspaper Makers and Vintners by one!
The Ray Jeffs’ Trophy
Otherwise known as LOGVEC, the Ray Jeffs’ Trophy raises funds for underprivileged children from London schools to take part in The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award Scheme. With over £61,000 being raised during the 18 years of competition some 43 schools in London have funded bursaries for students.
Up to 30 teams can take part, each playing as a team of four, at around £75 per player, with the best two stableford scores counting towards the team score. While the event is not sponsored it’s a fine day spent in the surroundings of Hartley Wintney Golf Club in Hampshire.
The Horners’ Trophy
The annual Horners’ Trophy held at Ashridge Golf Club. consists of teams of 4 competing for a beautiful trophy. We had a double win in 2010 and also in 2011. Again this event is not sponsored but provides a very enjoyable experience and at around £75 per head is great value for such a lovely course and great competition.
The society would like to encourage any Liveryman, at any level of ability who is interested in playing golf among like-minded people on some exceptional golf courses to join us. Please contact the Captain or Secretary via The Deputy Clerk at Butchers’ Hall.
Dates for the Diary
Wednesday 16th June 2021 - The Horners' Trophy
The annual inter-livery competition hosted by The Horners' Company is scheduled to take place at the beautiful Ashridge Golf Club next summer.
Full details have yet to be confirmed but, as the current holders of the magnificent carved horn trophy, we have a title to defend and hope to raise a fourball for the tournament.
The cost will be £125 per person for a round of golf played under stableford rules, coffee with a bacon roll and a post-competition carvery lunch. Please contact The Secretary to register your interest!
Whether you’re a poker genius or have no idea how to play, Liverymen are always welcome to the WCB Poker Tournaments, which takes place twice a year, usually in June and November.
The tournament is open to Liverymen and their guests and is more “banter over a game of cards” rather than an event for card sharps. It ticks the fellowship box and also raises money for WCB charities, with more than £5,000 raised over the seven tournaments so far.
The events are normally held in the VIP Poker Room at the Grosvenor Casino, Edgware Road, London. We are always well looked after by the professional croupiers and tournament directors at the venue who are used to dealing for professional players and our standard of play often induces a wry smile...
Upcoming tournaments will be featured on the events page and in our regular email bulletins.