Copyright © 2012 Chisiwck Polish
Cherry Blossom Shoe Polish
Dan & Charles Mason, pioneers of the shoe polish industry in Chiswick
The Dan Mason Memorial Gateway 1
The unanimous desire to erect some lasting testimony of the affectionate regard in which our late Chairman, Mr Dan Mason, was held by all the employees of the Company has found expression in the very beautiful erected at the main entrance to our sports ground.
Two substantial pillars of Roman tiles support a lintel of British oak, the surface of which is left in its rough state, treated slightly to bring out the beauty of its natural graining. The roof covering of hand-made tiles of a dark colour specially selected for their weathering and artistic properties, the gates, were executed in wrought iron of a simple design to harmonise with the structural work, are finished a dull black and paving of York stone and grey granite surrounds the gate gateway.
The Dan Mason Memorial Gateway
A simple ceremony of Dedication was held on Friday, 28th September (1928) the works being closed from noon until 2.15pm, in order that all employees might have the opportunity of attending.
A large number of Representatives of the Travelling Staff from all parts of the country were also present, but as we felt the ceremony to be so intimately our own no visitors were invited.
Mr Jack Bryant, the holder of the firms long service record, opened the gates in the presence of a large gathering and dedicated the gateway to the perpetual memory of Mr Dan Mason.
Owing to heavy rain only the actual opening could be performed on the Memorial site, the remainder of the ceremony being held in the new Printing Department adjacent to the Sports Ground, where the speeches were made clearly audible to everyone in the large assembly by means of Marconiphone Amplifiers.
In asking the Directors to accept the custody of the Gateway.
Mr Abbott said: -
“Fellow Employees, as Chairman of the Dan Mason Memorial Committee, it is my duty to say a few words about the Ceremony which is taking place to-day.
“WE have met to dedicate the gateway, the beautiful design of Mr A H Scott, to the memory of Mr Dan Mason. Whilst a certain sadness is unavoidable on such an occasion as this I would rather that your feelings wee those of gladness and gratitude, gladness for life spent in doing so much good, in such a manner that we may rejoice in the example given to us. I know Mr and Mrs Charles Mason will not misunderstand me. They know the bond of sympathy between them and us is far too strong and sincere to be in any way weakened by our endeavour to make bright the memories that this gateway is to revive from time to time. We employees could never dissociate Mr Dan Mason from Mr and Mrs Charles Mason. They formed a spiritual triangle. That triangle is still intact, but Mr Dan Mason’s corner is in closer communion with God, much closer than before. At our Mass Meeting in early June, the office and works were unanimous in expressing their desire to erect this memorial and a committee was formed. The response from Travellers and outside staff, as well as from the employees of Chiswick, was immediate and again unanimous, Employees at the Liverpool branch to whom one might have thought Mr Dan Mason was merely a name asked that they might be allowed to join in this tribute to his memory. The amount of subscriptions was limited by the desire of Mr Charles Mason, but in spite of his because of the unanimity of our desire we have this splendid gateway which is , at one and the same time both picturesque and substantial.
“On our behalf I ask the Directors of The Chiswick Polish Company to accept the custody of this gateway and to be responsible for its maintenance.
“Mr Bryant, who has the longest record of service with the firm, has, you will agree very fittingly, dedicated this gateway to the memory of Mr Dan Mason.”