The Fan Makers’ Company is honoured to have HRH The Duchess of Gloucester as our first Lady Liveryman. The Duchess is part of a long line of Royal Ladies associated with the Company. Granted its Royal Charter by Queen Anne in 1709, the Company received great encouragement from Queen Victoria as it struggled to fend off competition from foreign fan imports and further support from her fourth daughter, Princess Louise, herself an accomplished artist. HRH The Princess Royal was admitted as an Honorary Freeman in 1926 and HRH The Princess Alice, then Duchess of Gloucester, in 1948 followed by her daughter-in-law (today’s Duchess of Gloucester) in 1975.
Since 1897 it has been the custom of the Company to present a fan to Royal Ladies, the first being to Queen Victoria at her Diamond Jubilee. This tradition continues on the occasion of a coronation, wedding or other significant cause for celebration in return for a signature on the Company’s ‘Royal Autograph Fan’.
The Fan Museum is honoured to have HRH The Duchess of Cornwall as Patron. Her Royal Highness visited the Museum and formally opened the War and Peace Exhibition. She also viewed the new permanent display in the Reception Area about the history and functions of the Worshipful Company of Fan Makers.