With the tables laid out horizontally, Crompton joked that those who went to boarding school would probably feel right at home. This was certainly true but with the wet-whistled crowd intent on continuing their conversations as he embarked on his welcoming speech, it didn't so much bring to mind Hogwarts - as some were suggesting - as St Trinian's.
Oh God. He got them under control though? Crompton boldly battled on and his unbridled enthusiasm eventually secured the required level of quietness as he introduced a couple of specially filmed tributes from David Shane and Jeff Golblum in honour of Fellowship Award winner Paul Watts.
It was a richly deserved prize. Watts is hugely skilled and the 110 impressive commercials you see when you search for him in our archive provide ample proof of both his skill and his massive dedication to the craft of editing.
After dinner, the main business of the evening got under way with a rousing speech from Sally Campbell celebrating the 250 female directors who have added their names to the 'Free the Bid' website.
She promised a performance from herself and Crompton akin to the infamous inaugural Brit Awards pairing of Mick Fleetwood and Sam Fox.
Did they deliver? Heck, yeah! Between Crompton's posh gameness and Campbell's antipodean directness, they kept things ticking over nicely. All joking aside, having the ceremony presided over by a comedian with little love for the advertising industry always introduces an unwelcome distantness and its absence provided a considerable relief.
Kudos to Crompton, Campbell and the faultless Janey de Nordwall - pulling the strings from the sidelines - for putting it all together.
Who had the most gongtastic night? 4 Creative's 'We're the Superhumans' was the big winner. As well as 'Best Crafted Commercial', it secured a 'Best Director' Gold Arrow for Dougal Wilson; 'Best Writing' for Chris Bovill, John Allison, Dougal Wilson, Alice Tonge, Richard Briggs and JolyonWhite; 'Best Achievement in Production' for Ewen Brown, Lucy Jones, Shananne Lane and Louise Oliver; 'Best Casting' for Shananne Lane, Louise Oliver and Rose Waite; and 'Best Re-record' for Leland Music.
Did any other ads pick up more than two Gold Arrows? Yes! The 'Best Editing' Gold went to James Forbes-Robertson at Whitehouse Post for his work on Tom Green's 'Save the Children' film which also secured a gong for young actress Lily-Rose Aslandogdu; and the Gold award for 'Best Sound Design' for Jon Clarke at Factory.
That's quite a haul. What else did well? The return of SSE's Orang Utan provided Gold Arrows for Jorge Montiel, Sauce Vilas, and Phillipe Moine at The Mill for 'Best Photoreal Animation'; as well as Sam Driscoll and Matt Fuller for Best CGI'. The campaign was created by adam&eveDDB and directed by Academy's Frederic Planchon.
Tom Townend and Simon Bourne picked up Gold Arrows for 'Best Cinematography' and 'Best Colourist' respectively for their work on Droga5 and Daniel Wolfe's commercial for Hennessey.
AMV and James Rouse's Sainsbury's epic 'Mog the Cat' won Gold Arrows for Grant Walker, Gez Wright and Joseph Henson at Framestore for 'Best Anaimted Character' and 'Best Production Design' for Simon Bowles.
The 'Best Costume/Wardrobe' Gold Arrow was awarded to Michelle May for her contribution to Gary Freedman's time-travelling IKEA commercial created by Mother.
The 'Best In-Camera Effects' Gold Arrow was awarded to Alex Barber and Sam Brown for their work on adam&eveDDB's Lloyds Bank epic, directed by Brown himself.
The 'Best Original Composition' Gold Arrow went to Ashley Bates at Adelphoi Music for an NSPCC film which was made by the charity themselves and Aardman Animation.
It's just as well Jeff Goldblum didn't fly over for the awards as he would have been bitterly, bitterly disappointed to see his co-star in the Currys PC World ad pick up the 'Best Actor' Gold Arrow. The memorable performance was provided by Nicholas Collett and it was a great shout to give him the award. The campaign was created by AMV and directed by David Shane.
The 'Best VFX' prize went to Paul O'Shea, Hugo Saunders and Ricky Gausis for their work on Activision: Call of Duty.
For more details on all the award winners, head over to the British Arrows website.