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Date & Time

Saturday 26th September


Complimentary. Please note that places for this event are limited and therefore we encourage you to register as soon as possible.


Please note that the deadline to register for this event has now passed.


You’ll be given a link to the event and members of your household are welcome to join the call (this means these guests will be with you on camera and using the same device/Zoom account). Additionally, you’re entitled to share the event link with one additional guest (e.g. a relative or friend from another household). The name of the additional guest must be provided on the registration form so that a member of the Development team is able to accept them into the event on the day.

Booking deadline

Sunday 13 September 2020


Please note that a recording of this event will be made available to Johnians afterwards.

General information

For further information or if you have any enquiries, please contact the Development Office on 01223 338700 or at

Johnian Society Day 2020

The Johnian Society Day brings together alumni to celebrate their shared connection with the College every year. This year’s celebration will take place exclusively online to ensure our community’s safety and we look forward to seeing many Johnians, their families and friends in this new format.

The largest Johnian Society event of the year will take place on Saturday 26 September via Zoom. The event will comprise a welcome message by the Vice-Master, Professor Tim Whitmarsh, a panel discussion with experts in the field of food sustainability, a musical performance and a pub quiz. The day will end with a toast to Johnians for which a signature cocktail recipe has been specially prepared.


1.30pm–2pm: Event is live and online check-in opens

2pm–2.05pm: Welcome message from the Vice-Master, Professor Tim Whitmarsh

2.05pm–3pm: Panel discussion “From Farm to Fork – Making Food Sustainable” 

3pm–3.15pm: Coffee break and musical performance from The Gentlemen of St John’s

3.15pm–4pm: Pub Quiz… at Home!

4pm–4.05pm: AGM

4.05pm–4.15pm: Toast and farewell

Panel discussion: From Farm to Fork – Making Food Sustainable

The Johnian Society will host a conversation with experts in the field of food sustainability who will examine the journey to achieving a sustainable food system.

The speakers will guide us through the history of sustainability, explore the growing need for sustainable farming, and discuss which practices are tackling the climate crisis most effectively. There will, as usual, be a chance for the audience to ask questions of the panel following their discussion. 

The panel discussion will be chaired by Mark Wells (1981), Chairman of the Johnian Society.

Victoria Avery

Victoria Avery (1988)

Victoria Avery (BA, MA, PhD, Cantab) has been a Keeper of Applied Arts at the Fitzwilliam Museum since 2010, prior to which she was Associate Professor in the History of Art Department, University of Warwick (2005-10) and Rush H. Kress Fellow at Villa I Tatti (Harvard University Center for Italian Renaissance Studies; 2004-05). Dr Avery has curated numerous permanent gallery displays at the Fitzwilliam Museum, and co-curated several ambitious and critically acclaimed interdisciplinary exhibitions, including, Treasured Possessions from the Renaissance to the Enlightenment (2015), Madonnas & Miracles: The Holy Home in Renaissance Italy (2017), and Feast & Fast: The Art of Food in Europe, 1500–1800 (2019-20).

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Emily Norton (1997)

Emily Norton (1997)

Emily Norton studied law at the University of Cambridge and qualified as a solicitor specialising in commercial law, before returning to the family farm via an MSc in Sustainable Agriculture from Harper Adams. Emily co-founded Nortons Dairy, her on-farm dairy processing business in 2007, and produces award-winning dairy products on farm.  Emily is a graduate of the Challenge of Rural Leadership Course 2014, which gave her the boost to rekindle her career, and the Windsor Emerging Leaders programme in 2016. Since 2014, Emily has been combining her skills in leadership, business strategy, law and agriculture to engage in political research and policy thinking at the highest level of UK and EU law making.

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John Vincent (1990)

John Vincent co-founded the naturally fast food chain LEON with Allegra McEvedy and Henry Dimbleby in 2004. LEON has set the standards for what fast food can be and has shown that the principles of the Mediterranean diet can be applied to fast food that tastes good, does you good and that is kind to the planet. John is leading the expansion of LEON in both Europe and the US, with restaurants already opened in Amsterdam, Utrecht, Rotterdam, Oslo, Gran Canaria and Washington DC. John and Henry also led the transformation in how children eat and relate to food in schools. They were awarded the FIRST award for Responsible Capitalism in 2015 and in 2017, the Raymond Blanc Special Award for their work on school food and leading sustainability in the restaurant sector. John has co-written seven LEON cookbooks, which have been published internationally.

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Pub Quiz… at home!

Join us for 45 minutes of light hearted fun – we will be running a virtual pub quiz with questions focused around St John’s College and Cambridge. Feel free to pre-organise into teams beforehand (you might like to connect separately with a group of friends using another video conference facility) or just join in individually. 

The quiz will have 2 rounds, with questions ranging from easy peasy to fiendishly hard, so you’re guaranteed to learn an interesting thing or two about your College and University! 

It will be self-marked but hopefully everyone will feel justified in awarding themselves a congratulatory drink afterwards.

The pub quiz will be hosted by Zip Colley (2002), Honorary Secretary of the Johnian Society, and Peter Scott (2002), Committee Member of the Johnian Society.

Please note that further practical instructions on how to connect virtually will be sent to registrants ahead of the event.

The Johnian Society Cocktails

Bill Brogan, St John’s Catering Manager, has created sustainable signature cocktails specially for Johnians. 

The recipes of the Johnian Society signature cocktails can be accessed here.