The annual Vintners’ Installation Procession

The  annual Vintners’ Installation Procession took place today …

The new Master and other Officers of the Vintners’ Company were  installed in the Company’s Hall, and afterwards processed  from the Hall to the church of St James Garlickhythe for a special service.  In accordance with long tradition (*), they  were first presented with bouquets “of sweet and fine herbs that their noses be not offended by any noxious flavours or other ill-vapours”.  The procession was  led by a Wine Porter in a white smock and silk top hat, who symbolically cleared the way with a birch besom that never actually touched the ground.  The Porter was  followed by the similarly anciently-attired Beadle, Stavesmen, Swan-Markers and Barge Master, and in turn by the gowned Master, with the rest of the Company bringing up the rear.

(*) The Company received its Charter in 1363.

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