The Corona Chronicles Vol. 1

Good day all,    

As we progress into these troubling and uncertain times, we are regularly comforted with the positive mantra that we will get through this together, and that we will come out on the other side both closer and stronger. Its a sentiment I firmly believe to be true, and it is togetherness that should not be overlooked. We may not be able to access our Clubhouse, but the community of people it houses is far greater than just a building. For you, as a member are part of an Institution that has made a difference to life in the city since its inception in 1797, and that is certainly no different today. The conversations and discussions that are had in our premises need not stop because for a period as we cannot enter. So I would encourage all members as our President already has, keep in contact with your fellow member. Log onto the Members Area look through the contact database, and start the next conversation. Why not meet with members you haven’t met yet, but online? Unless they have opted out each member has the opportunity to add a picture and a bio to their profile in the Members Area. Go and take a look and familiarise yourself with your peers you may not have met yet. If you haven’t updated yours I invite you to do so, we have an amazing network here in the Athenaeum one that perhaps is underutilised. Whilst we may have a little added time on our hands there is no reason not to update your profile and let your fellow member know who you are. Our membership is an under used resource, and this could be a key to help unlock its potential.  

As I continue on the subject of togetherness, I speak directly to any of our Members who are currently isolating on their own, or are unable to leave the house, or are having a tough time at present. If you need anything, get in touch, drop myself an email and we will organise support for you. Dont go without, dont hesitate to ask for help. You are part of a community that can help you, and will help you if you need it. This email is monitored frequently and I will ensure anyone who needs it gets the support they need.    

It is my intention to keep writing to the Membership as frequently as possible, daily where possible, to ensure you all remain connected with the Club at a time where it would be easy to disconnect. I will be putting together a variety of things to share, but I welcome input from yourselves. I would love to hear and share the stories of the membership. Stories of the Club, stories in their lives, of anything at all. I would love to hear and share items of interest, what do you feel should be shared with your members? This regular blog could be me waffling along from time to time or could be an interactive dialogue with all you, I appreciate both are probably very appealing but I’m sure the latter would mean so much more.  

Lastly, I leave you with some positive news in this gloomy time. I am immensely fortunate to have an employer in the Athenaeum who is committed to supporting its staff in their personal development. Some of you will know that over the past 12 months I have been undergoing training through my professional body, the Club Managers Association of Europe, working my way through their Management Development Programme. Midway through last month, before all this madness hit us, I submitted my work based assignment which featured all the elements and knowledge that I have acquired over the course. After some delay in receiving the results due to the dreaded virus, I was delighted to receive the news today that I had passed the assessment and have received their accredited Club Manager Diploma qualification (CMDip)! If I can take the opportunity, I would like to thank the Members and Committees for their continue support of both myself and my personal development, and I look forward to continue putting these new skills into action as part of the Clubs journey to great success.  

On that note I bid you adieu, and remember if you anyone out there needs any support or assistance, just get in touch.  

Stay safe.  

Jack Birley
Club Secretary

Temporary Closure – Covid-19

Dear all,

The Main Committee met this morning (Tuesday 17th March) as a matter of urgency to consider the escalation of the Covid-19 threat and its impact on Club in terms of the safety of staff, Proprietors and visitors.

In considering an appropriate response the Committee were mindful of our membership, government recommendations and the very real risk of voluntary isolation becoming more prevalent.

In taking all of these factors into account, the Committee has made the decision to close the Club with effect from the end of business today, until Monday 4th May. This will be regularly reviewed by the Club Secretary and Officers of the Institution and any relevant news will be published as it comes to hand.

This decision is not one that has been taken likely and many of our Proprietors will have been involved in similar decisions within other organisations that they are involved with and have an understanding of the complexities of a rapidly changing environment. The Committee’s main consideration is to ensure that everyone connected with The Athenaeum is kept as safe as possible. 

This is a difficult time and each of us is faced with our private and professional challenges, and I hope that we can rely both on your understanding and support as we look forward to welcoming the membership back into the Institution as soon as is practicable.

As part of the agreed plan, the phone lines will move to voicemail this evening, and the email address of the Club Secretary (secretary@theathenaeum.org.uk) will be given to all callers. This will be monitored daily and Proprietors may expect a response to any questions that you may have in a timely fashion. Over the next couple of days, the Club Secretary will be in regular email contact with further information and a series of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ’s) will appear on the website.

Lastly, may I take the opportunity, as has been reiterated elsewhere, to remind you that regular contact with your friends, by telephone or email will be the best indication of your concern for their well-being, and will be appreciated more than face to face visits. The majority of the Member’s email addresses and telephone numbers, should they have been approved, are available through the Members’ Area of the website and contact between Proprietors is naturally encouraged.

Stay safe and well, with every good wish,

Dr Gaynor Bresnen

President

Tuesday 17 March 2020

Heritage Open Day 2019

Have you heard? The Athenaeum is opening for Heritage Open Day! ON Saturday 21st & Sunday 22nd September the Club will be opening its doors for two very special days! Many pass the Athenaeum’s Church Alley doorway without knowing what exactly it is, now’s your chance to come inside and discover The Athenaeum!

On Saturday 21st September we will be operating an ‘open house’, come down and enjoy our facilities from 11:00am until 10:00pm. The Newsroom will be open throughout the day serving fine food and beverage, why not unwind and relax in style in palatial surroundings? There are no guided tours taking place on Saturday, however, there will be members on hand to help anyone with any questions about the Club.

Also on the 21st, for the first time ever the Club will be offering a ticketed Afternoon Tea to the general public! This exclusive offering usually reserved for Members and is a Heritage Open Day first! Book your places now for just £19.99 per person. Afternoon Tea Service is available between 12:00pm and 3:30pm on the 22nd and is bookable either in person at the Club reception, or by calling 0151 709 7770. Payment is required in advance, tickets are subject to availability.

On Sunday 22nd September why not join one of the free guided tours and view the whole of our Institution whilst learning about its rich history and heritage? See the recently refurbished Library followed by a trip into the past via some of the treasures held in the Committee Room. These not to be missed tours are only open to the public once a year for Heritage Open Day, book your place now or you may have to wait until next year! Guided tours will be taking place every thirty minutes from 10:30am until 4:00pm and are bookable via email (reception@theathenaeum.org.uk), by phone (0151 709 7770) or in person at the Club. Due to popular demand, the following tours still have availability: 1:30pm, 2:00pm, 2:30pm, 3:30pm. Following the tour, guests have the opportunity to relax in our Newsroom and enjoy refreshments or food from the Club menu.

Sir David Maddison – Obituary in Yesterday’s The Times

In yesterday’s edition of The Times there featured a full-page obituary for our friend and Past President, Sir David Maddison. Sir David passed away peacefully earlier in July of this year, and we hope you agree that the piece, which can be found below, is a fitting tribute to a great man who will be sorely missed.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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‘Reports From The Front Line’ – Commemorating the 75th Anniversary of the Normandy Landings

Yesterday many across the world commemorated the 75th Anniversary of the Normandy landings. Often referred to as D-Day, the Allied Invasion of Normandy during World War II was the largest seaborne invasion in history and laid the foundations of the Allied victory on the Western Front.

Members of the Athenaeum and the Alexandrian’s of Merseyside, including the Lord Lieutenant of Merseyside, Mr Mark Blundell DL and former Lord Lieutenant Dame Lorna Muirhead DCVO, DBE, CSTJ, DL gathered at the Club for lunch to remember the occasion.

Further afield we were fortunate enough yesterday to be receiving reports from the front line by our own correspondent, Graham Burgess. Graham took part in a commemorative walk in Normandy with the Royal Marines, retracing the route taken by his father’s unit on that day 75 years ago – Royal Marines 4th Special Service Brigade.  Our thanks to Graham for sharing these bulletins, giving an insight into this Brigade’s journey, in what were some of the most important days in recent history.

  1. 07:32 – Landings began at Gold Beach, Jig Sector, by Royal Marines 4th Special Service Brigade. Heavy Fire from blockhouse and machine gun posts. Heavy Casualties. Much Equipment destroyed. Hand to hand fighting. Beach no yet cleared.
  2. Heavy shelling onto beach and at approaching landing craft. Mortars firing constantly.Heavy equipment losses very heavy. Block house on beach holding out. Very heavy fighting here. No tanks have landed successfully yet.
  3. Small breakthrough in beach defences made at 9:30. Advancing to rear. Heavy shelling and machine gun fire. HMS Fury has moved in shot giving direct supporting fire.
  4. Small groups are infiltrating behind defences. Blockhouse on beach causing heavy damage to approaching vessels. Still no tanks. Crossroads 300 yards from beach occupied preventing enemy reinforcements access to beach.
  5. Moving out of Asnelles towards Rodeo.
  6. At Pint, 2 miles inland of Le Hamel. Taking fire from bunkers on hill at Arromanches. Advancing towards rear Arromanches
  7. Grid Reference 01595 – 37704. La Carrefour. Light resistance, small garrison surrendered.
  8. Preparing to attack Point 54. With Dorset Regiment. Hidden bunkers encountered. Heavy machine gun fire.
  9. Point 54 taken. Les Mont de Ryes. 1 killed, several RM light wounds. 7 enemy killed 24 captured. Further bunkers in tree line under attack towards Arromanches.
  10. Moving on La Rosiere
  11. Approaching Tracy-sur-mer
  12. Attacking La Rosiere. The Assembly Area for 4th Special Service Brigade. During the approach an enemy officer on horseback rode up and demanded the Royal Marines surrender. He was shot dead. Heavy fighting house to house in village. Stubborn resistance.
  13. Heavy fighting at La Rosiere. An enemy convoy intercepted at crossroads. Captured vehicles weapons, troops. During that attack the diversion was used to mount an assault on village. Enemy surrender. 20 prisoners taken. 1 RM killed, 11 wounded
  14. Heading north from La Rosiere
  15. Passing inland of Longues-Sur-Mer. Just captured enemy Sgt Major on bicycle heading to meet his girlfiend in a brothel at Ouistreham. Reached Abbeye de Longues just south of Longues-sur-mer. Monks have thrown open their abbey for wounded. Several wounded by shu mines outside village. Intermittent fire from Longues sur mer. Re-arming and replenishing ammunition.
  16. Fire fight near La Buherrie. Brief opposition overcome. No casualties
  17. Chateau le Busq. Believed to be enemy communications centre. Found to be refugee centre for Spanish Fascists.
  18. Objective in sight. Port en Bassin Heavy fire from both sides.
  19. Probing towards Port en Bassin. Several hidden bunkers, trench system, and 2 flak ships moored in port. Flak ships laying down heavy cannon fire. Responding with own heavy machine guns. Port heavily defended
  20. Capture of Escures just inland of Port en Bassin Three troops assaulting Port en Bassin.  Two troops laying down fire on flanks. Royal Navy bombarding Port fir one hour. Air attack by Typhoons timed for time of assault.
  21. Outside western Port en Bassin a bayonet charge over 200 yards of open ground by 20 Royal Marines broke through enemy defences allowing entry into port area.
  22. Beg to report Port en Bassin has surrendered

End.

A ‘Heist’ At The Athenaeum…?!?!?

Staff were greeted to a shock this morning upon the discovery that our grand Presidents’ Board, located in the entrance hall, had vanished! Initial reports pointed to daring heist by a Past President who had recently suggested the board would look good in his new kitchen, but after thorough interrogation the suspect cleared his name, confessing that he ‘had only stole a biscuit from the Newsroom but not the Presidents Board’ as it ‘wouldn’t fit in my pocket’…. The mystery continued!

 

The board -a who’s who of Liverpool life during the Club’s existence, from Roscoe to Doctors Currie and Duncan, to Chavasse and in more recent times Colonel ‘Paddy’ Bryson to Elizabeth Christie (HH Judge Steel) just to name half a dozen- has been a discussion point within the Institution as of late as following our current President, David Roscoe’s name being gold leafed into Athenaeum history there was no more room for future Presidents. What are we going to do next? Shut up shop after 222 years? Not a chance. Perhaps commission a thinner board to be made to go alongside the current board? Hmm, maybe. What about commissioning a new similar board? I suspect the President’s would look a little lonely for a few years before it began to be populated. For a moment, however, the question what were we doing next was overshadowed by ‘what are we going to do NOW?’

The solution to what we are doing now and next conveniently was the same, and it lay at our reception in the form of a receipt for ‘the collection of one honour board’ from Master Craftsman, Neil Wyn Jones. Proprietors may remember this name as he is the gentleman who built the Monsarrat Cabinet located in the aforementioned room. The Presidents’ Board thankful had not become the spoils of a daring raid on the premises, but in fact is on its way to a workshop for some magic to take place before it returns ahead of the AGM on July 3rd, where our third female President, Dr Gaynor Bresnen, will be added to the board, the very same board that the names of all our Presidents before her reside!

Athenaeum Bulletin: WC 08/10/2018

You can find details of all the events taking place this month here: https://theathenaeum.org.uk/upcoming-events-this-october/

Details of all of the Club’s events until the end of the year can be found at https://theathenaeum.org.uk/events/

 

Last Chance to book!!! ‘Liverpool Beyond The Brink’, Dinner with Professor Michael Parkinson CBE – Friday, 12th October 2018

We’re delighted to welcome Professor Michael Parkinson to the talk before Dinner next Friday, 12th October. Professor Michael Parkinson will be discussing the book he is currently writing to update his 1980s classic – ‘Liverpool on the Brink’. His new book describes the extraordinary if incomplete renaissance of Liverpool during the last 30 years. It shows how much has been achieved, who helped and what are its outstanding challenges in future. Full details can be found here https://theathenaeum.org.uk/event/dinner-with-professor-michael-parkinson/

 

This Wednesday at the Club!

The Athenaeum looks to be bustling on Wednesday, 10 October, with two interest groups taking place during the course of the day. At 2:00pm the Film Group meet in the Wine Servery https://theathenaeum.org.uk/event/the-film-group-14/ and at 5:30pm the Music Group meet in the Library for a concert by The Camira Wind Trio https://theathenaeum.org.uk/event/music-group-the-camira-wind-trio/

 

Important: Church Alley Access From Church Street

From Sunday 14 October to the evening of Friday 19 October there will be no access to Church Alley from Church Street due to work taking place on the sewer mains. Access to the Athenaeum from School Lane will remain unaffected.

 

For Your Information

On Wednesday 12 December the Dining Room will be closed for a private function. The Newsroom and Library services will remain unaffected on this day. We are sorry for any inconvenience this may cause.

 

Dates for Diaries

This year’s Annual Dinner has been scheduled for Friday, 22nd March 2019. This event, the most prestigious in the Athenaeum calendar, historically sells out very early. You can guarantee your attendance by booking now via the Members’ Area or through reception.

 

Might this be of interest?

Proprietor Susan Rutherford will be raising money for the Eve Appeal, a very specific Cancer Charity, on 01/01/2019 when she will be walking the North Norfolk Coastal Path. Full details, including how to sponsor, can be found at https://www.justgiving.com/susan-rutherford5 published 9 October 2018.

You can find links to previous ‘Might This Be Of Interest’ posts here at https://theathenaeum.org.uk/might-this-be-of-interest/

If you have any items that may be of interest to your fellow Members, please contact Jack Birley.

 

Events advertised are available to Members of the Athenaeum and their guests, for further information about membership of the Club please see www.theathenaeum.org.uk/membership, or alternatively call us on 0151 709 7770. If you are in Liverpool, why not drop in for a chat?

Might This Be Of Interest

‘Might This Be Of Interest’ is a bulletin dedicated to items not strictly Club related, but may be of interest to the Membership. If you have anything you may wish to contribute to ‘Might This Be Of Interest’ please contact Jack Birley.

Links to all recent ‘Might This Be Of Interest’ can be found below, articles will remain until the related subject passes or is no longer relevant.

 

Liverpool Mozart Orchestre – Saturday 23 March https://theathenaeum.org.uk/might-this-be-of-interest-liverpool-mozart-orchestra/ 21/03/2019

Invitation to the University of Liverpool Moot Final – Monday 25 March https://theathenaeum.org.uk/might-be-of-interest-university-of-liverpool-moot-final/  published February 27 2019.

Propeller Club Lunch – RRS Sir David Attenborough – Friday 5 Aprilhttps://theathenaeum.org.uk/might-be-of-interest-propeller-club-lunch-rrs-sir-david-attenborough/ published March 19 2019.

Cambridge Society of Liverpool: https://theathenaeum.org.uk/might-this-be-of-interest-cambridge-society-of-liverpool/ published March 19 2019.

Christine’s Marathon Effort: https://theathenaeum.org.uk/might-this-be-of-interest-christines-marathon-effort/ published March 9 2019.

Bentley Operatic Society Event https://theathenaeum.org.uk/might-this-be-of-interest-bentley-operatic-society/  published February 27 2019.

Christine’s Marathon Effort: https://theathenaeum.org.uk/might-this-be-of-interest-christines-marathon-effort/ published March 9 2019.

Royal Ascot 2019 https://theathenaeum.org.uk/might-this-be-of-interest-royal-ascot-2019/ published February 27 2019.

 

 

 

Athenaeum Bulletin: WC 01/10/2018

Club Events;

View all events taking place this month here

 

‘Liverpool Beyond The Brink’, Dinner with Professor Michael Parkinson CBE – Friday, 12th October 2018

We’re delighted to welcome Professor Michael Parkinson to the talk before Dinner next Friday, 12th October. Professor Michael Parkinson will be discussing the book he is currently writing to update his 1980s classic – ‘Liverpool on the Brink’. His new book describes the extraordinary if incomplete renaissance of Liverpool during the last 30 years. It shows how much has been achieved, who helped and what are its outstanding challenges in future. Full details can be found here https://theathenaeum.org.uk/event/dinner-with-professor-michael-parkinson/

 

For Your Information

On Tuesday, 9th October, the Dining Room will be closed to Members, and the Newsroom will open at the later time of 1:00pm. This is to accommodate a charitable event organised by a Proprietor. Newsroom services will commence in full upon opening, the Library remains unaffected.

On Wednesday 12 December the Dining Room will be closed for a private function. The Newsroom will remain open as usual on this day.

We are sorry for any inconvenience this may cause.

 

Dates for Diaries

This year’s Annual Dinner has been scheduled for Friday, 22nd March 2019. This event, the most prestigious in the Athenaeum calendar, historically sells out very early. You can guarantee your attendance by booking now via the Members’ Area or through reception.

 

Might this be of interest?

Did you know there is currently a national drive by the National Governor’s Association to recruit skilled governors to our schools? If you are interested in becoming a school governor, Proprietor Jane Owens has provided some further information here: https://theathenaeum.org.uk/might-be-of-interest-school-governors-wanted/

If you have any items that may be of interest to your fellow Members, please contact Jack Birley.

 

Events advertised are available to Members of the Athenaeum and their guests, for further information about membership of the Club please see www.theathenaeum.org.uk/membership, or alternatively call us on 0151 709 7770. If you are in Liverpool, why not drop in for a chat?

 

Upcoming Events This October

Upcoming Events This Month, October 2018

Wednesday 10 October – Film Group – 2:00pm https://theathenaeum.org.uk/event/the-film-group-14/

Wednesday 10 October – Music Group Concert – 5:30pm https://theathenaeum.org.uk/event/music-group-the-camira-wind-trio/

Friday 12 October – ‘Liverpool Beyond the Brink’, Dinner with Professor Michael Parkinson -6:30 for 7:00pm https://theathenaeum.org.uk/event/dinner-with-professor-michael-parkinson/

Sunday 14 October – Sunday Lunch Following the Judges’ Service – Arrivals from 12:00pm https://theathenaeum.org.uk/event/judges-service-sunday-lunch/

Wednesday 17 October – Spanish Wine Tasting with Tapas https://theathenaeum.org.uk/event/spanish-wine-tapas-evening/

Thursday 25 October – New Members Informal Dining https://theathenaeum.org.uk/event/new-members-informal-dining-4/