The National Association of Master Bakers (NAMB) held a glamorous 125th anniversary dinner at The Guildhall in London on Saturday (3 November).

Around 600 guests were in attendance for the event, which began with a champagne reception, followed by a four-course dinner.  

Guests dined on a starter of fillet of cod on a bed of mushy peas, followed by a fillet of Castle of Mey beef for main. A trio of bakers’ puddings, and a mini Hovis loaf, filled with scrambled duck egg, and adorned with ‘125’ on the top, preceded coffee and chocolates.

Speeches from Christopher Freeman, president of the NAMB, his brother James Freeman, chairman of the British Confectioners’ Association, and Stephen Gilbert MP – who was instrumental in the overturning of the pasty tax – followed the dinner.

Christopher Freeman spoke of the challenges that have faced bakers in the second decade of the 21st century, including parking charges and falling footfall, but said the industry had come together successfully on the pasty tax debate.

He also announced that the annual NAMB conference would be undergoing a revamp for 2013, when the presidency will be handed over to Anthony Kindred, of Kindred Bakery.

Christopher’s wife Christina also said a few words, and joked about how if you are married to a baker, you do not have holidays, but go away for research and development opportunities instead.

The Militaire Orchestra provided musical entertainment throughout the dinner.