Guests at our 192nd Annual Luncheon at Stationers’ Hall, London, on 14 November, enjoyed an enlightening speech by Sir Peter Bazalgette, non-executive Chair of ITV.

As well as reflecting on the event being held at a time of remembrance, including those who gave their lives in the 18th century for press freedom, and the tradition of free speech on which the printed word was founded, Lord Black of Brentwood, Deputy Chairman of the Telegraph Media Group and President Emeritus of The Printing Charity, introduced our guest speaker, Sir Peter Bazalgette, as someone who, in so many ways, personifies the UK’s creative industries.

In his speech, Sir Peter noted that two of our past Presidents, Disraeli and Gladstone, both towering figures of the nineteenth century, had links to his great-great-grandfather, Sir Joseph Bazalgette, by lending him money to build London’s sewage system and effectively ending London’s cholera epidemic. He said that people should have the confidence to invest in great projects such as Crossrail and a super digital highway as a legacy for future generations, emulating the Victorians’ flair for public works that are still used today.

Jon Wright, our Chairman, reported on the significant progress the charity made in the last year. We helped nearly 1,750 people, up by one third year-on-year. Welfare support was given to 820 people, which included nearly 200 people supported through redundancy in 13 companies, while 830 people received support through our education and partnership activities.

He also spoke about the emotional support the charity provides on the phone to beneficiaries being highly valued and this year we have started to work with industry partners to offer practical and emotional support to their employees. This is an exciting development for us and one we will be talking more about in 2020.

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