On 8 July, Drapers Hall in London hosted the installation of Martin Miles as the 36th master of the Worshipful Company of Actuaries, together with Peter Thompson as senior warden and Michael Tripp as junior warden. The ceremony took place in the Court Dining Room with a dinner that followed in the Livery hall.
The Company's chief guest at the dinner was Michael Fallon, MP for Sevenoaks and then minister of business and energy, now secretary of state for defence. Other guests of members included Greg Andrews, chief executive of Christ's Hospital Foundation; alderman Alison Gowman, the master glover; John Dewhurst, the master tax adviser; Michael Webster, the master information technologist; and Neil Braithwaite, chairman of the Brathay Trust.
The new master thanked Michael Fallon for finding the time in his extremely busy schedule to dine with the Company, before paying tribute to his immediate predecessor as master, Charles Cowling. He highlighted Charles's recent extraordinary achievement - running 10 marathons in 10 days. While 5,000 people have climbed Mount Everest, more than 800 have won Nobel Prizes and more than 500 have been into space, Charles was only the 79th person to do the 10-in-10. In so doing, Charles also raised more than £65,000 for charity, including the Brathay Trust.
Martin talked about the Company's commitment to supporting education, both mathematical and actuarial, and he took the opportunity to present prizes to Clinton Elliot and Ian Rogers for their excellent performances in last year's actuarial exams.
Before he closed proceedings he set the Company the challenge of raising at least £200,000 a year for the next five years - which he described as a 'Million-in-five' challenge to put his predecessor's paltry 10-in-10 in the shade. Martin also paid tribute to the very first master of the company, Geoffrey Heywood, who died a few weeks earlier, aged 98. He had contributed greatly to the Company - and to the actuarial profession - over many years and continued to support the Company even in his twilight years. He will be fondly remembered and greatly missed by many.