The Rembrandt Hotel in South Kensington and the first Wednesday of March mean only one thing to many UK entomologists – the Verrall Supper. I have written about the Verrall Supper previously on more than one occasion, so this will, once again, be largely a photographic record. This year the first Wednesday of March was March 1st and this seemed to have caught a few Verrallers by surprise. Consequently, numbers were slightly down compared with last year’s record, but the number of non-attending Verrallers paying to retain their membership was at an all-time high. One notable absence was the former Verrall Secretary, Helmut van Emden who due to mobility problems was unable to attend, only the second one that he has missed in 50 years!
On a very sad note, we reported the deaths of two long-time members of the Association, Gerry Tremewan (long time editor of The Entomologist and the Entomologist’s Gazette, and Bernard Skinner, author of that magnificent book, Moths of the British Isles.
More positively, we were slightly up on female entomologist this year, 30% compared with last year’s 29%. There is still much progress to be made, but we have seen a year on year increase now for the last four years so, perhaps one day we will hit that magic 50:50 mark.
Our entomologist in Holy Orders, the Reverend Dr David Agassiz, was unable to attend this year, so instead of the usual entomological grace, I performed a humanist blessing, which seemed to meet with satisfaction from all sides. I reproduce it here if anyone feels like using it at a similar occasion.
As we come together at this special time, let us pause a moment to appreciate the opportunity for good company and to thank all those past and present whose efforts have made this event possible. As we go through life, the most important thing that we can collect is good memories. Thank you for all being here today to share this meal as a treasured part of this collection.
And now to let the pictures tell the story.
Chris Lyal and Clive Farrell of the Entomological Club – “helping” at the registration desk
Three very illustrious (or should that be shiny) entomologists – Jeremy Thomas, Charles Godfray and Dick Vane-Wright
Richard Harrington and the winner of the Van Emden Bursary, PhD student Ellen Moss
Two of the more venerable Verrallers – Trevor Lewis and Marion Gratwick
Many Verrallers are young and quite a few are female 🙂
Adriana De Palma making a fuss about Erica McAlister’s new book 🙂
Some older entomologists enjoying the food and drink
The younger entomologists also had excellent appetites
The President of the Royal Entomological Society, Mike Hassell, wishes you all good health and happiness
Beards still feature among the younger end of the male Verrallers, although sadly it is no longer mandatory 🙂
And a bit of entomological bling to bring the show to an end 🙂
Many thanks to all who attended and I hope to see you all again next year, plus many new faces.