Report by Paul Dimond on the Reception at the Reform Club on the evening of Thursday 8 September.
Moments before the start of the Society’s reception on 8 September, the news of deepest sadness arrived of the passing of Her late Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. As guests were already assembling in the Strangers’ Room at the Reform Club and after consultation with our President, we took the decision to go ahead with the event, although inevitably the news cast an enveloping pall over the evening. Lord Taylor reflected right away to the assembled Members the Society’s extreme sadness and our recognition of all Her late Majesty had done over so many years to define the bilateral relationship. We sent soon after a condolence message to the Palace on behalf of the Society.
Of the about forty Members who had registered for this event, including a number of new ones, some thirty actually attended. We were pleased to welcome Professor Martijn Zwijnenburg of UCL as our Guest Speaker. He most helpfully described the activity of DANinUK, the Dutch academic network he chairs. A few of his DANinUK colleagues also joined us, adding to the opportunity for Members to learn more of what they did and for us all to appreciate the significant presence of Dutch academics in British universities across a wide range of disciplines. There seemed much enthusiasm for this new linkage for the Society, as well as the opportunity for networking in person in the inspiring atmosphere of the Reform Club. Your Council hopes further to develop our links with DANinUK and, in some outreach into the Netherlands, to explore the practicality of developing new connexions with British academics operating in universities there.
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From the announcement in the July e-news :
This evening is to welcome Members and their guests to give them a taster of the Society. After a welcome by our Chairman, our guest speaker Professor Martijn Zwijnenburg PhD MSc Professor of Computational Materials Chemistry at UCL and Chair of DANinUK will talk about the Dutch Academic Network in the UK. There will be ample opportunity for meeting new people while enjoying drinks and canapés. Members of Council and Events Committee will be present to answer any questions. Cost: £25 p.p. for Members and £15 p.p. for their guests with potential interest in membership of the Society (max 2). If interested please contact the office as soon as possible.