RICS President Clement Lau. Photography by Virgile Simon Bertrand
Earlier this week, I attended the state funeral of Her Majesty the Queen, our Patron, at Westminster Abbey in London. The service was a deeply moving experience, with words and music perfectly evoking the reverence and esteem in which the Queen is held around the world.
That day, I met many who like me were attending on behalf of Her Majesty’s patronages, that array of causes and endeavours touched by the Queen’s influence and interests. All those I spoke with were profoundly conscious of the example set by Her Majesty, one of dedication to duty that we as chartered surveyors commit to emulating through our practice in service of the public advantage.
Amid the emotion of the day, it was truly inspiring to see representatives paying the respects of such a broad range of communities who were united by the common cause of working for the public good in their fields.
For my part, representing RICS as president is always a privilege, but to do so on this occasion was the greatest honour of my life. As members of the Royal Family continue to mourn, I have written to His Majesty the King on behalf of the RICS community to offer our sincere condolences.
Elsewhere, work continues apace to ensure that RICS continues to fulfil the promise of public service that our Royal Charter demands. Members may have read news of significant recent progress in implementing the recommendations of the Bichard Review, with a focus on greater accountability and better representation for members.
I have previously reflected on the primacy that the review places on public interest and members’ leadership of the Institution. It is heartening to see that the changes decided by Governing Council will ensure the greatest possible proportion of its seats decided by members by election from next year.
The alignment of the presidential and calendar years, and the decision that the RICS president will serve as chair of Governing Council for the duration of their one-year presidential term, will also mean greater accountability and strategic alignment throughout the workings of RICS. In particular, the chairing of Governing Council is a function that I know all future RICS presidents will undertake as a great honour and always conscious of the responsibility to the profession and society that it entails.
As Governing Council implements the Review’s recommendations, I am hopeful that we will continue to see good progress in the coming months to empower members in the leadership of the Institution’s work. I am also confident that together we can transform RICS to support better the profession’s vital work to the public advantage in the coming years.
My best wishes to you all.
“Work continues apace to ensure that RICS continues to fulfil the promise of public service that our Royal Charter demands” Clement Lau, RICS President