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August 2017

The Japan-British Society Awards

The Society set up an annual awards scheme in 2008 to recognize significant work in the field of Japanese-British relations by individuals and organisations that have not otherwise been acknowledged. The announcement and presentation of the awards will be made at the Annual Dinner.
Please refer to the prospectus for guidelines on how to nominate candidates, Nominations will be accepted until 30th September, 2017.

JBS Awards 2017 Nomination Form / Prospectus

December 2016

JBS joined Remembrance Day Commemorations

The British Embassy Tokyo hosted this year’s formal Remembrance Day Service held at The Commonwealth War Cemetery, Hodogaya, Yokohama on Sunday 13th November 2016.
Mr Takashi Tsukamoto, Chairman of the JBS laid wreaths at a formal Remembrance Day Service.

November 2016


At the Society’s Annual Dinner on 21st November, Japan-British Society Awards were presented to Mr Philip Harper and The Japan Sherlock Holmes Club (represented by Ms Akane Higashiyama) for their contributions to the furthering of Anglo-Japanese relations.

Mr. Philip Charles Harper was born in Birmingham and raised in Cornwall. He is the first ever non-Japanese national to take on the highly prestigious post of toji, or "master sake brewer". Upon graduating from Oxford University in 1988 he came to Japan, where he spent the next two years as a JET teacher.
During this period he was introduced to the world of sake. He undertook an apprenticeship at Ume no Yado, a traditional sake brewery in Nara, where he gained his fundamental sake brewing knowledge.
Mr. Harper published his first book in 1998. Entitled The Insider's Guide to Sake, it became hugely popular amongst sake enthusiasts overseas.
In 2001, after working there for ten years, he left Ume no Yado, and, in the same year, passed the Nanbu Brewer's Guild Toji Exam, the first non-Japanese person to achieve this.
Mr. Harper published his second book in 2006. The Book of Sake: A Connoisseurs Guide quickly became a success internationally.
Since 2007 he has been Master Brewer at Kinoshita Shuzo, makers of Tamagawa sake. His relentless efforts to promote sake and its artisanal craftsmanship to people around the world, and particularly to those in his native country, are worthy of recognition, we believe, in the form of a Japan-British Society Award.

The Japan Sherlock Holmes Club was founded in 1977, so next year will mark its 40th anniversary. This is therefore a particularly good time to recognise, with a JBS Award, the contribution of the club to Japan-UK relations.
The club now has more than 600 members and is involved in a wide range of activities covering not only the character of Sherlock Holmes, the life and times of his creator, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, but also historical and cultural studies of the Victorian period. The club holds seminars twice a year on matters related to Holmes, and there is an active dialogue with Sherlock Holmes fans around the world, particularly the UK.
Sherlock Holmes was first introduced to Japan in 1894, a mere seven years after the publication of the first Holmes novel, “A Study in Scarlet”, in 1887. Since then, almost 100 translators have come out with various versions of Conan Doyle’s works, and countless studies of Sherlock Holmes and Conan Doyle have been published in Japan.
The silhouette of the pipe-smoking man with the deerstalker and cape is instantly recognisable to almost all Japanese, and Holmes has come to exemplify the spirit of justice and fair play that British like to think of as core British values.
Sherlock Holmes books, along with works by that other great British crime writer Agatha Christie, are among the most requested library books among Japanese high school students.

© The Japan-British Society