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The Writing Equipment Society

Gerald Harrison, your Interim Chairman is a native of the North East of England, and comes from coal-mining stock.Now semi-retired, he began his working life in 1970 as a Management Trainee and then a Work Study Officer with Players of Nottingham.He then moved into the service industry, working for the Mars group and then Sketchley plc until

1984, when he entered the gambling industry, where he worked for the next 30ish years.

When not compiling Action Lists and Minutes of Meetings for other Council members to ignore. he enjoys Victorian and contemporary fiction, modern military history, music, DIY and self-indulgence. He is a reluctant member of a local gym in an attempt to combat said self-indulgence, and is involved in local village affairs and the promotion and running of a biennial village Arts Festival.

He is also an enthusiastic user and occasional collector of fountain pens and other articles of writing equipment.


Ian P. Williamson your Marketing Officer. He started work at the age of 15 as an engineering apprentice – he was the worst engineering apprentice the company had ever had, but as they had never ever fired an apprentice before he was moved into the publicity department and he remained in marketing and

stint in Trade he became Membership Secretary (nobody else wanted the job!) and eventually moved on to his current role as Marketing Officer. avid fountain pen user and collector specialising mainly in Wytwrth safety pens and pen/pencil combinations, but thanks to WES he also has an eclectic collection of other writing 'stuff'.

When not messing about with WES things he is a primary school governor and reading mentor and along with good friend and WES colleague Jeremy Collingridge runs UK Pen Shows.


Finally having read Gerald's bio Ian is beginning to think that he might be a brother that he never knew as like him Ian is originally from the North East (in his  case north of the River Wear so he's the 'real deal'), Ian is also from coal mining stock and has very similar tastes in reading and music. The final twist of fate is that Ian recruited Gerald into WES!

Jeremy Collingridge OBE your Librarian took a degree in mechanical engineering at Southampton University while being a University Apprentice at Rolls Royce in Derby.  In 1973, he went to work on a gas turbine project in Norway which comes in handy when talking with Scandinavian WES members.  

Jeremy and Ian Williamson joined together to run the pen shows of the UK from 2008 and there are now six shows a year.  These run alongside the Society.

Other than pen collecting, Jeremy has a Police Support Volunteer  since 2002 in the process leading his lead of volunteers to four national team awards, an achievement that has yet to be repeated anywhere else.  He also continues his connection with the Institution of Mechanical Engineers helping young engineers and playing his part on professional review panels




esign for his entire working life, now retired he's still in marketing this time as the WES Marketing Officer

Becoming a council member in 2007 not long after joining the organisation. his first role was in Trade taking over from Alan Hobbs, around this time he also joined the original team that ran the  London Writing Equipment Show. Following his

1975 saw him return to Whetstone the spiritual home of the gas turbine – Sir Frank Whittle’s original works, staying there until he retired just before LWES 2007 which was WES’s first Show.

He found a Parker51 ‘just like the one he lost at School’ while on a business visit in the Unites States while on a work placement for three months but returned with sixty pens to be the start of his collection.  Most of these needed overhaul so the manual skills learnt in the Rolls Royce Training School returned to use together with visits to the legendary Arthur Twydle.  He became WES Librarian in 2001, a post he has held since.  WES repair classes started in May 2009, Jeremy sharing these with David Wells. Classes by Webinar have run since around 2011

Nigel Simpson-Stern Membership Secretary

Born in the Midlands, I have always remained close to my roots training as an accountant in the engineering sector that prevailed in the area before progressing into tourism and then the construction sectors.An unexpected gift of a sterling silver Parker Duofold in 1991 started it all off

but it was some time later before my collecting bug took hold, thank-you eBay!! I now have a large collection of ‘stuff’ that includes pretty much everything that has ever had anything to do with writing and when asked what in particular I collect, all I can say is anything that makes me smile! It was 2008 before I came across the Writing Equipment Society and I immediately had to join. There was so much information there that I just had no idea existed and all relevant to my collecting passion. I enrolled on the Pen Repair Course which was simply brilliant, thanks to the technical wizardry of Jeremy Collingridge and Ian Williamson, followed by a trip to The London Writing Equipment Show where I met the team on Council and that was it – my seat on Council was secured.


At that time I was running a commercial flooring business but with the new-found skills gained on the repair course, I was considering trading my collection to establish a less physically exerting career to take me up to retirement….but when push came to shove, I just couldn’t bring myself

Your Council continued