The annual SCL Brewery lunch was held on 17 th February at the Brewery in Chiswell Street ; this year with an Olympic theme to celebrate the success of the 2012 London Bid. Over 400 members and guests attended. Chairman Professor Anthony Lavers gave a brief review of the Society's recent work in the regions, where Cardiff , Belfast and Newcastle have benefited from new Co-ordinators and re-launch events with high profile speakers. He also gave an update of recent international developments; he had visited Singapore and Malaysia SCLs in the last few months, while the New Zealand and United Arab Emirates SCLs are now setting up their first activities.
The first guest speaker was Dalton Grant, one of the great British athletes of the last 20 years and one of the team of Ambassadors who helped to secure the London Bid's success in Singapore . International high-jumper Dalton, a gold medallist at the 1998 Commonwealth Games in Kuala Lumpur, spoke of the profound impact which he expected London 2012 to have on the next generation of British athletes and on the people of London for whom the facilities and regeneration will be a legacy.
Picking up on Dalton 's reference to funding needs, Mike Heath, Chairman of the British Athletics League, informed the audience that Dalton had agreed to offer his own Olympic outfit to the highest bidder to help meet the acute need of a competitor at the forthcoming Commonwealth Games. A joint bid from Atkin and Keating Chambers beat the reserve price but the winning bid was finally made by SGB.
The stage was then set for the second guest speaker: Jack Lemley, newly appointed Chair of the Olympic Delivery Authority, in one of his first public engagements since taking on the role. Mr Lemley, emphasizing the tightness of the timeframe, addressed procurement and especially dispute resolution issues which confront the Authority and those working with it to deliver the Olympic and Paralympic facilities and infrastructure. Mr Lemley drew on his experience of leadership in procuring the Channel Tunnel, of which project a number of members and guests also had personal experience.
The SCL Olympic Brewery lunch was also attended by Graham Watts of CIC as guest of the Society and representatives of Construction News, Building Magazine and Chartered QS. With an attendance of over 420 members and guests it is believed to be the largest event to date in SCL's 22 year history.