Start date: 24th January 2019
End date: 25th January 2019
Venue: Morzine, France
WCF team joins teams from thirty seven other Companies, for the largest Inter-Livery event held outside the UK
In late January 2019, beautiful Morzine welcomed a huge influx of Liveryman, all gathered to participate in the 10th running of the ever-more-popular, Inter-Livery Ski Championships (ILSC). With almost forty Companies represented and over 200 competitors, the event has become the largest Inter-Livery event held outside the UK. Its importance, and profile within the Livery movement, were highlighted this year by the attendance, at the award dinner, of the recently elected Lord Mayor of London, fresh from representing the City of London at the Davos World Economic Forum, one of his Sheriffs, Freeman of the WCF, Liz Green and Mayor of Morzine, Gerard Berger.
For 2019 the WCF ski team boasted a record five entrants - Richard Whitlock, John Ward, Christopher Day, Richard Davies and team captain Hugh Wykes.
The team received valuable support from Lorrie McGowern, Marie and Sophie O'Brien, Jenny Wheeldon and Gerard Oates and we were all really appreciative of the time and trouble they all took to be on the slopes to shout, holler and applaud as we made our way down.
The event took place over two days with a qualifying event over a short course on day one, to determine the starting position of entrants to the main event - a much longer and very challenging slalom course - on day two.
Team captain, Hugh Wykes was the best of our qualifiers, with a very creditable mid-table starting position - but with the increasing popularity and profile of the event, the average age of competitors is declining each year and more and more very good skiers are entering - so our team were never likely to challenge the very front runners. Hugh however achieved a highly creditable thirteenth overall in the age adjusted finishing positions and topped the list for over seventies - a fantastic effort on his part.
One of the great things about the ILSC is the chance it affords members of a wide range of Livery Companies, from the Great Twelve, to some of the newest of the Modern Livery Companies, to meet, mingle and make connections in an informal environment. The atmosphere throughout the build-up and during the event itself was one of friendly rivalry. Whilst everyone was determined to do their best, they were just as keen to support, encourage and advise others. Companies inter-mingled, chatted and compared notes on everything from the best way through the gates to the organisational structure and governance of their Companies.
Whilst the WCF team may not have been front runners in the main competition, its enthusiasm, friendliness and willingness to engage with every Liveryman and competitor it encountered, will no doubt have done much for the Company's standing within the wider Livery movement. Contacts and connections made will flower in the months and years to come and hopefully some of our new friends will be joining us at Company lunches in future.
For the record, the outstanding teams of the event were the Air Pilots and the Leather Sellers, both winning multiple awards at the ceremony on the last night.
Congratulations are also due the the Ironmongers who organise and run this wonderful event so well. Every one of the WCF team agreed that this was perhaps, one of the most enjoyable Inter-Livery events anyone could remember. For those amongst the Livery who have not yet participated - don't hesitate to put your name forward for 2020 - Hugh Wykes (firstname.lastname@example.org) will once again be our captain and hopefully Christopher Day (email@example.com) can be encouraged to once again to act as Head of Communications for the team - contact either of them for more information about joining us all for what is bound to be another great event in 2020.