We are most saddened to announce the death of Past Master Emeritus Inez Dorothy Butler

Dorothy died on 28 March 2016, aged 86. Inez had been in hospital suffering from a chest infection and receiving oxygen but passed away peacefully and in no pain.

Inez was admitted to the Freedom of the Company in 1975, whilst it was still a Guild, and clothed in Livery in 1986. She was the Company’s second lady master, installed in 1992 and served for the customary year. Her husband John Butler, whom she married in 1981, also served on the Company’s Court. She continued to regularly attend meetings of the Court into the new millennium. Her father was a member of the Salters’ Company and it pleased her when the Environmental Cleaners used the Salters’ Hall.

Inez was known by her maiden name of Dorothy Oliver (Dottie Ollie to her friends) during much of her business career. On leaving school she had a short spell in the WRNS, but not to her liking, she went to London University to study Institutional Management. After qualifying, she had a variety of jobs in halls of residence, hospitals, and some time in the cleaning industry’s chemical business working with the late John Ayres. In 1965 she joined the then Ministry of Health as an advisor in hospital domestic management, developing the technical aspect for the national scheme for domestic superintendents. Other duties included evaluating cleaning materials and equipment for the supplies department. Dorothy spent several years in the National Health Service dealing with domestic management at both regional and national level. In 1982 she was promoted to deputy chief officer to Molly Mawson, who was also a member of the Environmental Cleaners, and, whose husband Lt Col Ian Little was a founder member and Master in 1976/77.

In 1989 Dorothy was appointed as Director of Training and Education at the British Institute of Cleaning Science (BICS), and worked tirelessly with the then Executive Director Colin Hasson, to establish the Institute as a major force within the cleaning industry. She was earlier at the forefront of the educational movement of the Institute having helped to establish the COPC as the leading qualification for cleaning operatives. In the mid 1990s Dorothy created the Institute’s Training and Education Committee with the task of setting criteria for qualifications, continuous development, and new tasks and skills. Together with her husband, John, they developed BICS Open Learning, the beginning of ‘e-learning’. She was awarded the Sholom Gordon prize in 1993.

Dorothy retired from the Institute in 1995 but continued to serve he Institute as a Moderator and in many other ways, including BICS Open Learning Ltd. With John and Michael Bizley, they established Clavis Ltd, which was also much involved in the delivery of distant learning, training and education to the industry.

Colin Hasson, writing in his book, described Dorothy quite simply as ‘the Institute in educational terms’. The 30,000 plus certificates produced during her period as Director, hold testament to that achievement. She was also involved in the Institute’s recognition on the international stage, especially in the far east.

Dorothy is succeeded by two step daughters. The funeral took take place at Golders Green Crematorium, East Chapel, Hoop lane, London, NW11 7NL at 2.30 pm on 20th April. Donations to:‬

For more information please contact, Michael Bizley, Almoner, WCEC, on 01359 24404, email:

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