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2009 : City Lunch Review

The 2009 City Lunch

And so to the Worthians City Lunch, which took place on Thursday 26th February 2009 at the Bleeding Heart Restaurant in Bleeding Heart Lane, London EC1;  home of much action in Little Dorritt and on a more personal level, the location for one or two fairly long lunches and dinners over the years!  In case you are worrying about a spiritual connection (hurriedly thinking…)  the estimable owner, Robert Wilson, also runs the Crypt of St Ethelredas at Ely Place next door (the oldest Catholic Church in England) as a wedding and events venue; thus aiding the churches revenues.

A motley crew (or is the collective noun, a plummeting?) of bankers and other currently better regarded professions – ranging from James Forte (C’72) to Alex Podbury (C’04) – gave up their desk-based Prêt a Manger sarnies to be able to  check out what ghastliness or delights the intervening years had inflicted on their former school mates.

I was sitting next to Father Kevin, which was something of a shock as, although I see him from time to time at these type of events, he still appears to look the same as when I left Worth around 30 years ago. I told him I was convinced that there is a portrait lurking in the monastic attic somewhere. Though come to think of it I am not sure I started the ageing process until l left Worth…..

An excellent lunch and wine was served amidst refectorial babble, and if the same is true for others as for myself, there was a comforting surprise that the guys are much the same as they all were 30 (or whatever) years ago. It was great to see people like Hugh Easterbrook (R’76), unchanged after all that time.  Although I have to say that his profession of my insanity at still playing football was a bit rich coming from such an excellent sportsman! The Madsen cohort must be commended for turning up with three of their number covering two generations – showing admirable long term commitment to the ‘old place’.

Our glorious leader, Nick Butterworth (G’76) – still as smart as when a school prefect – gave a usefully droll and informative speech. Then, with some bravado and descriptions befitting a man in the property world, quite rightly endeavoured to sell us some of the excellent new Worth Society cufflinks and ties and then, accompanied by much heckling, a type of tankard which he claimed was unique – which may well be true.  Appropriately, for a venue in Hatton Garden, our resident master jeweller Nick Barnett (G’73) kindly sponsored the pre-lunch drinks for which we were all grateful.

We must thank Nick Barnett and Olivia Henley for arranging the lunch and, as with all Worth events, I walked away in the sun feeling far better than on arrival – which I imagine is the aim of our Alma Mater in all matters.

Julian Kirk (StB’75)