Social occasions within the Livery
In common with all other Livery Companies, the WCSM has an annual programme of formal occasions, the majority of which are held in London at the Company's home in Apothecaries' Hall, and all of which are designed to promote fellowship. We hold quarterly Court Luncheons and an annual Livery Dinner (held in a larger Livery Hall within the City), which are open to Liverymen and their guests. Click here to access the Members’ Area for details of upcoming Company functions.
Besides allowing the Company to offer hospitality to members of other liveries and to prominent persons in the City and the optical world, these occasions provide members with excellent opportunities to entertain their private guests, and to talk to their fellow liverymen about matters of professional and private interest.
Freemen do not have a right to attend these lunches or the Livery Dinner. Occasionally, if we are using a very large Hall, the offer of seats at the Livery Dinner may be advertised to Freemen.
Freemen will receive their own special invitation to Evening Drinks parties at Apothecaries’ Hall (usually held every two years) and are always included in invitations to “Eye to Eye” open discussions at conferences, trade events and venues around the country.
However, much of the social life of the Company is conducted in less formal surroundings. All Freemen and Liverymen automatically become members of the Spectacle Makers' Society, which organises an annual programme of day and weekend visits and “pop up “ events, intended to appeal to members of different ages, backgrounds and interests. Click here for details of the Society’s calendar for the coming year.
There are also other opportunities for small gatherings of Friends, such as the Black Friars who meet a few times each year to enjoy each other’s company, perhaps on a “historic hostelry tour” or at one of the open lunches which take place each month in certain Livery Company halls.
All events, lunches and dinners are advertised well in advance by email and all members receive the Company's six-monthly newsletter, "From the Master & Wardens".
Liverymen and Freemen who express an interest in music, art, military spectacles or sports, including bridge, golf, go-karting, skiing or even pancake racing will receive email notifications of any inter-Livery competitions in which they might like to take part. Each member pays their own way in inter-livery sporting events but is accorded full honour for their achievements. For further information, please contact the Clerk.