The Cutlers' Company is one of the most ancient in the City of London having received its first Royal Charter from King Henry V in 1416. It is a guild of traders whose function is to protect its members and ensures that a high standard of work is maintained. Their trade was to produce implements with a cutting edge such as knives and swords. Over time their wares changed to cutlery, razors and scissors
At the front of the Cutlers' Hall there is a terracotta frieze by Benjamin Creswick. There are 33 figures in the frieze showing the four aspects of the trade: forging, grinding, hafting and finishing.
Forging shows the worker plunging the metal into the heat and then it being beaten into shape. Grinding is sharpening the knives. Hafting is the putting the handles on the knives. Finishing shows someone heating and polishing the final product and making sure it works.