Sun. May 26th, 2024

Our new Deacon, Dr Nina Baker, introduces herself with a thanks to the Late Deacon and her plans for the coming year.

Dr Nina Baker, DL

Hammermen all,  it is of course a much repeated phrase from incoming deacons to say that it is an honour and privilege to be elected as the Deacon of the Hammermen of Glasgow. And so it is – all of that, but I am hoping my year as Deacon will also be fun and interesting.

I am delighted to inherit the weight of both the chain and the privilege from Late Deacon David Westmore, who has had a year in which we started to come out of our shells a bit more and he has been able to represent the Craft at events and dinners as they resumed. He has presided over a successful year and, despite financial turmoil in the outside world, our investments have held up well.  The Craft’s usual activities, such as the Hammermen Awards and the Prince Philip prizes and our continued affiliation with HMS Defender have been another mixture of in-person and Zoomery.

Dr Nina Baker receiving the chains from Late Deacon David Westmore.

I was delighted to be able to join Late Deacon David and Ex-Deacon Bruce on a visit to Portsmouth for a wonderful day afloat which Defender had put on for its many affiliated organisations. Defender has been very busy what with all the tensions in the Baltic and Black Sea so we have still not been able to timetable a date to present their crewmembers with their Hammermen awards.

During the past year I have been assembling a document about what the various roles in the Master Court entail. Most of this knowledge was not previously recorded in one place and we wanted new members to feel fully informed as to what might be in store for them. The plan is to make this booklet available to potential new recruits to the Master Court. We are always looking for Hammermen who might be interested in being more involved in their Craft, so if you think you might have something to offer the Master Court, do get in touch for an informal ‘no-obligations’ chat.

The online talks continued and we are planning to carry on with those and also to investigate the possibilities to hold more in-person gatherings for members. I would love to hear what you would like to see in the way of talks or gatherings.

I would therefore like to express, on behalf of the Master Court, our sincere gratitude to David for all his work and steering us through this past year, and I look forward to his continued future support on the Master Court. Also thanks to Late Collector Gordon Masterton holding the fort at short notice and in another year in which ‘collecting’ new members has not been so easy.

During my term of office, I aim to visit as many of the ‘hammering trades’ in Glasgow as I can. This is partly to try to replicate the ‘visiting of the craft’, a symbolic version of which happens during the Collector’s Breakfast, and partly to do whatever I can to encourage apprenticeships and encourage existing apprentices. So if your company would like a visit, again – do get in touch.

I will close by thanking our Late Deacon, David Westmore and recognising his contribution to the Incorporation of Hammermen during a successful year as Deacon. As is evident from the Craft’s Annual Report he oversaw a year to be proud of, much having been achieved, and leaves the role with the Craft in excellent standing.