WACL History History of WACL – 1990s Last Updated: Sep 16, 2020

Key events:

  • Nelson Mandela was freed
  • The Channel Tunnel opened
  • Mad Cow disease hit Britain
  • Princess Diana died
  • Google launched (1998)
  • Good Friday Agreement signed
  • Dolly the Sheep Cloned


In the decade that started in recession and ended in a dotcom bubble, Thatcherism gave way to Cool Brittania  and Britpop as the Spice Girls urged Girl Power.

WACL celebrated its 75th Anniversary by recognising  75 women of achievement over the previous 75 years (many of whom were WACL members) and planted 75 trees in Regent’s Park in their honour. All were feted at a huge Gala Dinner which was the social event of the year.The President at the time, Caroline Marland, hosted the night resplendent in an  Amanda Wakeley gown she’d acquired ,following a break with tradition ,when the designer had put on  a fabulous catwalk fashion show for us in lieu of a formal dinner.

The Club also launched the first of what was to become an annual day of inspiration,training and mentoring for the next generation of WACL-ers, The Forum.

It was the beginning of an important shift of emphasis for the club and its membership, which was subsequently embedded into the revised constitution. We added the specific objective that members committed to give back to the next generation of future women leaders: “to provide inspiration and aspiration for women in our industry via events such as the WACL training forum and WACL workshops”.

The Forum –now rebranded Gather – and the smaller ‘Gatherings’ workshops that we run are central to the Club’s revised priorities to make sure that our female future leaders are nurtured.

Girl Power indeed!