16 Mar

Tuesday, 14 March marked the 600th anniversary of the death of Sir Richard Whittington, better known as Dick Whittington, four times Lord Mayor of London.

In celebration of his life and achievements, I attended a service at St. Michael Paternoster Royal to commemorate his life. The music and singing were splendid, and The Bishop of London preached an inspiring sermon.

After the service, we enjoyed two presentations from leading academics, ‘The Man Behind the Pantomime‘ told us all about him, and how his large fortune was spent by his executors on numerous works of public benefit around the City of London.

Dick Whittington and the Sixty Four Holer‘ told the tale of how Whittington decided to make a contribution to the well-being of London’s citizens by paying for the erection of a “substantial privy often referred to as a longhouse.” Both talks were fascinating.

Alderman Alison Gowman concluded the event and told us of her plans with the Livery and Corporation, to commemorate the anniversary with a publicity drive about how not to block up sewers. We then had tea at Innholders’ Hall, discussing pantomime cats and medieval sanitation!

Michael Shapiro