Meet the current Master of the Guild, Mr Anthony Archer.
Anthony (Tony) Archer was born October 1947 and has one older brother Michael. Their parents had met at RAF Cosford and married on Boxing Day 1941. Tony lived and grew up in the Aldermoor, and attended the Aldermoor Farm infant and junior school where at the age of seven, the English teacher realized he had a slight lisp and was given extra tuition to help improve his reading. He attended Stoke Secondary Modern Boys School in Britain Road. His favourite lesson apart from carpentry was playing rugby football and was in the First XV each successive year. His working life began 3rd September 1963 when he was apprenticed to W.H. Jones & Son for four years as a carpenter and joiner. Day release was at Coventry Technical College plus one evening a week. He worked mainly in Coventry but within the Midland area as well. He remained in the building trade until November 1999 changing companies twice, A.G. Gale & Son and Denmil Contractors, the latter for a period of 29 years. He had a complete career change by joining Securicor and trained as a C.I.T (cash in transit) driver, collecting / delivering cash from various establishments within a fifty mile radius of Coventry also servicing A.T.M.’s whilst on night shifts. He was attacked in Broadgate at midday one Saturday returning to his vehicle with cash from Topshop, fortunately no serious injury. The following year along with others was made redundant when the company moved its C.I.T staff to Leicester in May 2002.
Another career change followed that year after marrying Georgie in August and moving to Kenilworth. He trained and became a support worker in a local care home for adults gaining an NVQ level 2. In October 2006 he joined a company called Turning Point whose Chief Exec. is Lord Adebowale, and worked in a care home in Leamington Spa which specialized in people with P.M.L.D (profound multiple learning disabilities) who also had severe physical problems. He studied for and gained his NVQ level 3 in social care. He found this work to be very rewarding and humbling, particularly as a “keyworker” arranging holidays for the residents to such places as The Isle of Wight, Lake District and Ireland to name but a few. His previous trade enabled him to do odd jobs about the home, and was given a “free hand” to completely refurbish the laundry room, for which he received an award. All the materials were paid for out of his 60th birthday money which he had requested for instead of presents. He asked to work past his retirement age because he enjoyed his work so much and left two years later in April 2014. Tony became a Freeman of the City of Coventry in April 2010 and joined the Freemen’s Guild in 2011. He held the position of Charity Warden for two years before becoming Senior Warden then Deputy Master. It is with great pride and honour that he is looking forward to his year in office, and to serve to the best of his ability, along with his wife Georgie.
Immediate Past Master, Mr Steven Morson.
Steven became a Freeman of Coventry in 1977 at a special Lord Mayor’s Admission Court witnessed by his father, who is also a Freeman.
He was educated at Goodyear’s End School in Bedworth, before moving on to Manor Park Grammar School in Nuneaton. With 6 O level passes and the Alfred Herbert Prize for Metalwork, he began a five year technical apprenticeship at A.C. Wickman Ltd. at their Banner Lane works in Coventry.
After gaining an ONC in Engineering, Steven moved into the Sales Promotion Department and was offered a scholarship in Technical Writing in place of the normal progression to HNC in Engineering.
Soon after gaining full employment as a Technical Author, A.C. Wickman started to lay off many employees as the recession bit harder. The Midland area had already seen the closure of several other major engineering companies as well as the collapse in motor vehicle manufacturing. Steven realised that job opportunities would soon be hard to find, so he chose to join the Royal Air Force on a short service commission.
During his seven year service, Steven had a busy time that included postings and visits to the USA, Mexico, Honduras, Belize, Cyprus, France, Germany, Iceland, Norway and Ascension Island. He also spent time with the Royal Navy on board a type 42 destroyer.
After leaving the RAF, Steven was able to secure a place with the Civil Aviation Authority, on an Air Traffic Control course at their training centre near Bournemouth. He passed out with his Aerodrome, Approach and Approach Radar licences, working at three international airports as well as the Royal Aircraft Establishment at Bedford. Steven was also an instructor and course manager at an aviation college.
Steven gained his Private Pilots License as part of his ATC training and enjoyed flying light aircraft during his time off work.
Leaving Air Traffic Control in 1994, Steven returned to the midlands and completed a HNC in computer graphics at the Mid Warwickshire College. He then taught part time at the same college before moving to a firm in Daventry that created three dimensional training systems for aircraft and vehicle simulators.
Just prior to 2000, Steven became self employed and during this time he studied computer programming, gaining a City & Guilds Advanced Diploma in the subject. He also studied electrical engineering, qualifying for the C&G Level 3 NVQ in electrical installation and the C&G Level 3 NVQ in electrical inspection, testing and certification.
Steven met his partner Ann in 2010. Together, they enjoy a lot of U3A activities as well as all the Guild functions. Ann is a retired metallurgist and Chartered Engineer, having studied at Rugby College of Engineering Technology (later absorbed into Lanchester Polytechnic) and Wolverhampton Polytechnic. During her 30-year service with Cummins Engine Company in Daventry, she led the Materials Laboratory team and travelled extensively to resolve manufacturing problems with suppliers.
Although Steven has no children, his sister has two wonderful sons and four beautiful grandchildren. All of them can melt your heart and Steven thoroughly enjoys the family get-togethers. Ann has also become a much loved member of Steve’s family and together they have thoroughly enjoyed their time as the Master and Master’s Lady of the Guild.