The Skinners’ Company, registered in England, is one of the “Great Twelve” livery companies with a history going back some 700 years. The Company developed from the medieval trade guild of the furriers: members of the guild dressed and traded furs that were used for trimming and lining the garments of richer members of society. The Company has not been associated with the craft for many years and today administers its schools, almshouses, and charities that contribute mainly to educating the young and helping older people in need. The Company is not a charity itself.
Membership of the Company, including both the livery and freedom, numbers approximately 1,000. The controlling body of the Company is the Court which has 36 senior members and is chaired by the Master. Various areas of management of the Company are delegated by the Court to committees made up of members having particular experience in the work concerned. The day-to-day administration of the Company is carried out by the Clerk and permanent staff.
Skinners' Hall and the staff offices are situated in the City of London on a site that the Company has owned since the 1400s. The first medieval hall was burnt down in the Great Fire of 1666 but Skinners’ Hall is still essentially the second hall rebuilt in the 1680s. That it should have survived the wear and tear of centuries, and the bombing of two world wars, is remarkable and is recognised in the fact that it is a scheduled ancient monument, Grade I listed.
© 2007 – The Skinners’ Company