Sunday, 10 October 2010


I was privileged to be invited to the Lightmongers' Company Masters' and Clerks' luncheon held at Tallow Chandlers' Hall on Friday and further asked to respond on behalf of the guests at the end of the meal.

A company with close links with the electrical and lighting industries (for more details go to ) the Company probably has the most interesting, and unique, way of deciding how to define its livery.  When it was originally first established in the fifties, even before it was a guild its membership was limited to 110, the voltage in London at that date.  When the Company became liveried in 1984 it increased to 240, keeping up with London voltage changes.  I could not resist pointing out in my speech of thanks that since 2008 voltage has dropped to 230 across London and in addition there is quite a large variance (207-253 for those who might be interested in such matters).  Keeping the livery in line with such variance is quite a challenge.  I understand that three phase 440 volt is an option already considered but further tentatively suggested the Underground's 630 volt standard offered huge opportunity.

The Tallow Chandlers' was a company with a prior right to insist that, as electric light was a successor to tallow chandling, they could, if they had been so minded, attempted to block the development of the Lightmongers.  Of course they did nothing of the sort and gave unstinting support to the creation of the new Company.  In turn the Lightmongers look upon the elegant Tallow Chandlers' Hall as their home hall.  For further details see

Master Lightmonger, Hugh Ogus, master for the second time, was a most considerate host and it was good to exchange ideas with a Company that in particular takes an especial interest in using modern technologies as part of their charitable activities.

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