Ye Olde Cock Tavern, London
In “The Bulletin” dated March 1940 (vol.1 no. VIII) there is an article saying that the procedure and agenda for our Inaugural Annual Meeting were to be discussed at the Council Meeting of March 2nd but the date was already fixed for March 16th, and every member would be advised of the precise time and venue through the post. That venue would be Ye Olde Cock Tavern, in Fleet Street, London, a hostelry originally dating from 1550 but having been moved across the road in order to build the Bank of England in 1880. Its frontage is famous even today, as it is a tall narrow building, shoehorned in between two larger wider ones. President C Glidden Osborne gave an address which was summarised in the Bulletin of April 1940; that tells that once War had been declared, the Council had decided that less meetings would take place and more magazines would be printed, plus the number of pages in those magazines would be raised from four to twelve. He predicted that they may not be able to hold regular meetings for the next few months, transport being difficult and with every expectation that it may become more so; times for meetings were difficult, and in any event practically all of them were being called upon to perform duties which made it impossible to attend regular meetings. He spoke of how the Council had been already thinned by call ups to war, and that initial hopes of gaining their so longed for Incorporation had been dealt a blow by the Board of Trade demanding to see two years` successful workings before they would even consider it. The Secretary A.C. Wiggins then took the chair. He announced that seven general meetings and ten Council meetings had taken place in the last year, and three competitions promoted. These were: “My Favourite Set and Why” (being won by Fred Bason with Mr. Purdie being runner up), “A Display and Write-Up of any set chosen by the collector”, with a cup, donated by Eric Gurd (going to Mr. Pullen with runners up being Messrs Duge and Blows), and “The Set of The Year” which had asked members to put three selected sets issued in 1939 in personal order of preference, these sets being Ardath “Stamps Rare and Interesting”, Hill “Views of Interest” and Lambert & Butler “Interesting Customs and Traditions of the Navy, Army and Air Force”, which came respectively first, second and third. The one who predicted this order was Mr. Duge, with Mr Sims being second and Mr. Jarvis third. All three winners were awarded the three sets, and a ten shilling cigarette card album. At the time of the meeting there were one hundred and eighty two members, seventy two of them having joined in the first three months of 1940. And at the meeting, or shortly after, another eighteen signed up.