The Company of Watermen and Lightermen of the River Thames was founded in 1514, when the earliest Act of Parliament for regulating watermen, wherrymen and bargemen received Royal Assent from King Henry VIII.
Under a further Act of 1555 the Company introduced apprenticeships for those wishing to learn the skills of the Watermen. In 1700 the Lightermen (carriers of goods/cargo) joined the Watermen’s Company.
In 1780 The Company moved into its own purpose built hall in St Mary at Hill, where we can still be found today. The Company is a working guild and is very actively involved with the life of the River and those who work on it.
The Company is governed by a Court of Assistants, led by the Master and four Wardens, who are elected annually by the Court.
Tony Maynard HMW was installed as the 193rd Master of the Watermen’s Company on 10 July 2019.
The new Master is pictured with (L to R): Ted Gradosielski BEM (Junior Warden) Mrs Gina Blair (Senior Warden), Derek Mann and Sir David Wootton (Junior Wardens).
Some helpful links –
The River Thames Lunch Club
The Watermen’s Company Shop
The Master’s Blog
Doggett’s Coat & Badge
Congratulations to Patrick Keech the winner of this year’s Doggetts Coat and Badge wager. Second was James Berry followed by Jack Fenelli and James Gilbert. It was a tough race due to ‘lumpy’ water but very exciting for those watching. Well done to all four rowers.
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Open House Saturday
Watermen’s Hall will be open on Saturday 21st September. We will have four tours – for ticket holders only. The times for the tours are 9.00, 10.30, 12.00 and 1.15. To apply for tickets please send a stamped addressed envelope marked for the attention of the Assistant Clerk. Please note only two tickets per application.
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