Carmen are first and foremost a Fellowship, bringing together different professional disciplines and individual interests.
Charity is a priority for Carmen who like to give, and our Benevolent and Heritage Trusts – to which all members are encouraged to contribute – are important sources of charitable funds for the Company .
Carmen are a progressive and forward-thinking group, building on heritage to promote transport knowledge, generate debate and encourage innovation within and beyond the transport and logistics industry.
Carmen reward merit – the Company’s Awards recognise significant achievements, contributions and innovation of individuals, companies, and the military services.
Carmen are diverse, inclusive, non-partisan, apolitical and non-lobbying, aiming to reflect the industry objectively and positively.
Carmen functions take place throughout the year, in Church or Hall, in London and the regions, including our prestigious Award giving at Mansion House and Cart Marking at Guildhall.
Carmen and their friends join together to enjoy the very best of good fellowship, demonstrate their benevolence, honour the military services, and serve the City civic.
The Company’s principal aims start with the development of transport education for public benefit. Our Education Committee, has put together a programme of extremely interesting events for teaching, learning and sharing. To provide a place where everyone feels comfortable, the lectures will be hybrid events, taking place so that you may attend a live lecture or attend on Zoom. The choice is yours but your participation is needed to make these events a success. If you would like to know more then please look at the Education Events, where you can also book your place. Should you wish to ask any questions or – indeed – give a lecture, then please contact the Chairman of the Education Panel by email – firstname.lastname@example.org
Our Hall is administered by The Worshipful Company of Carmen St Dunstan Heritage Trust (Registered Charity No. 1174950), which provides resources to advance education, knowledge and research into transport and logistics; and especially about the development of the occupation of a carman. It does this in two ways – by the establishment of a museum and gallery at the Hall; and by providing state of the art facilities and equipment, for use by The Worshipfull Company of Carmen and others, to offer in-depth transport education for schools and other educational institutions as well as their students.
The Worshipful Company of Carmen Benevolent Trust CIO (Registered Charity No. 1164687) is an important partner in this work, having helped to establish facilities at the Hall and by being involved in identifying educational institutions where knowledge about the industry can be circulated. Our Benevolent Trust also provides grants to schools in London where the needs of students might not otherwise be met and it works with schools supported by the City of London to place students from disadvantaged backgrounds, so they may achieve their potential.
Each Court meeting reviews the educational work undertaken by the Trusts as well as initiatives in hand, along with reports from our own Education Panel, which helps to identify and advance educational work through the Trusts.
Why is the name “The Worshipful Company of Carmen”?
A Worshipful Company refers to its origins as a religious order or fraternity that first met in worship. A City of London livery company is one of the various craft or trade associations of the City, most of which are descended from medieval guilds. Hand carts were the first mode of transport used for distributing goods. They were moved by Cartmen and it is easy to see that this name has been changed over time to Carmen.
How is it governed?
Our governing body is the Court of Assistants which is comparable to a Senior Management Team within industry, except that ours are all unpaid voluntary positions. They are assisted by the Clerk and Deputy Clerk who have full-time roles within the Company to manage administration and ensure the smooth running of events and all that we do.
The Court of Assistants comprises Liverymen elected to Court who have not yet held high office, the Junior and Senior Wardens, the Master (each serving in that office for a year) and Past Masters of the Company. Court members and Officers wear ribboned badges, while the Master and Wardens wear fur-trimmed and embroidered gowns on formal occasions.
The Company is democratic in intent and practice. Appointment to the Court is by election, in which every Liveryman and Freeman of the Company is entitled to vote. Progression to Junior Warden and beyond is also by election, within the Court.
The opportunity to serve as Master is the highest honour the Company can bestow. The Master’s chain is the mantle of authority and collar of servitude.
The Court is supported by committees which focus on specific aspects of the Company’s activities, on which Liverymen as well as Court members are encouraged to serve.
The Court also appoints the following honorary positions:
- Honorary Treasurer
- Honorary Solicitor
- Honorary Surveyor
- Honorary Editor
- Honorary Almoner
- Silver Trustee and Honorary Archivist
and together with Military Liaison Officers, all are willing volunteers.
The two most recently elected Assistants are appointed Court Stewards.
Our Beadle is a part-time appointment, and our Standard Bearer is a services volunteer. Our Honorary Chaplain is elected by the Court; our Assistant Honorary Chaplain and Chaplain Emeritus also play a part in the activities of the Company.
The Company’s charitable activities are conducted through The Worshipful Company of Carmen Benevolent Trust CIO (Registered Charity No. 1164687). All members are encouraged to contribute generously and indeed, around half of its funds comes from members. To find out more please click here to read on.
During the period 2015 – 2017, culminating in the Company’s 500th year, the Company achieved a supplementary charter, specifically identifying its modern purpose and practices, with philanthropic objects focussing on furthering the occupation of Carmen and transport and logistics education for public benefit.
Our Heritage Trust has acquired, restored and now operates Grade 1 City premises to house the Company and both our charitable trusts.