Provincial Grand Lodge of Warwickshire

Lodge Support Team

The Provincial Lodge Support Team for the Province of Warwickshire is managed by Mike Midgley.

You can contact Mike via,

eMail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

tel: +44 (0)7850 193073 (inc message service)

Address: Provincial Grand Lodge of Warwickshire, Yenton Assembly Rooms, 73 Gravelly Hill North, Erdington , Birmingham B23 6BJ.

 

The Provincial Lodge Support Team offers support to Lodges in the Province who are in need of assistance. The members of the Team regularly assist in ceremonies, fill offices and deliver large pieces of Masonic ritual. They also help wherever possible in supporting Lodges that are low in numbers but which are still able to conduct their work themselves.

Being in the Team also opens up opportunities for members to gain experience of our ceremonies and make daily advancements in their Masonic knowledge by visiting Lodges where different ceremonies, lectures and demonstrations are being performed. Members of the Team range from Entered Apprentices to senior Provincial and Grand Officers all of whom voluntarily give of their time. Members also pay for their own meals when dining, so there is no cost to any Lodge that asks for help.

If a Lodge is in need of help, or if anyone wishes to enquire about becoming a member of the Support Team then please contact Mike who will be happy to advise further.

Orator

The Provincial Grand Orator for the Province of Warwickshire is Stephen Townsend

W Bro Stephen Townsend

You can contact Stephen via e-mail This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or by telephone +44 (0)121 454 4422

Firstly I wish to forward my heartfelt thanks to my predecessors W Bro Trevor H Sturt the first Provincial Grand Orator 2008 until 2011 and W Bro Keith Marchington 2011 until 2015 .

What is an Orator?

In very simple terms he delivers a short oration approved by UGLE and afterward stimulates discussion on the content of that Oration. All Orations should be short, lasting no more than 15 to 20 minutes, and should focus on the deeper meaning of the ritual and its symbolism.    The difference between an oration and a lecture is that the focus of learning should arise out of the debate, which should provide the stimulus for Brethren to research further into the subject and to reflect on their own views.

I am a firm believer that orations are a valuable part of the fabric of Freemasonry offering Lodges the opportunity to listen to a short oration and afterwards join in as mentioned a debate on the content of that oration thereby stimulating learning and a better understanding of the Craft and Freemasonry in general.

The emphasis on retention has been the focus of the Mentoring Scheme and the Orators’ Scheme compliments this by providing a focus on our rituals.  So many candidates go through the three Degrees without knowing the meaning of those Degrees or receiving an explanation they do receive a booklet of that degree but there are very few opportunities for Brethren to be exposed to and explore the lessons found in the ritual.  The role of the Provincial Grand Orator, supported by his team, will be to actively develop this aspect of Freemasonry

In essence, the Provincial Oration scheme is designed to provide members, and possibly non-Masonic guests, with an opportunity to listen to talks on interesting Masonic topics and also to provide a relaxed forum in which discussion can take place; after all, there is more to Freemasonry than just rituals and ceremonies.

Retaining our members is becoming more and more important as we lose far too many due to pressure of everyday life or a perceived lack in Masonic knowledge. It is generally felt that we do not explain enough about the Craft within our own lodges and its so-called mysteries. The future wellbeing of the Craft critically depends on its ability to recruit new members and, even more importantly, to retain them. Experience shows, however, that he often remains in the darkness of ignorance simply because nobody has taken the time to explain what it all means as he passes through the three degrees.

That is why the Provincial Grand Master with his team have recognised this ongoing problem and where the Provincial Oration scheme will help and positively enlighten those who possess a healthy curiosity about our ancient and honourable institution.

All Orations, which may only be delivered by designated Orators, consist of many papers, lectures and presentations which will undoubtedly enhance the enjoyment of all of our members. These include a wide variety of subjects related to all aspects of Freemasonry, and we have been very grateful for the contribution made by all fellow Masonic authors for their support.

In addition to the papers already available, we would be delighted to consider any additional ones written by our members. Also, if any members have in their possession any other papers (not written or researched by them) which might be of interest, please also send these to me directly. This will need the permission of the author if still extant, and each such paper will be read (as needed) in order to designate whether 1st, 2nd or 3rd degree.

The 2016/2017 Competition

The deadline for the 2016 Masonic Paper Competition has been extended to give brethren the opportunity to complete and submit their papers. In order to give all writers the best opportunity, the deadline for submission is now 1st May 2017. We strongly encourage all brethren to have a go at conducting a little research, the work does not need to be onerous as there is a wealth of information available in print and on the Internet. Papers are particularly encouraged from brethren below the chair as you often bring a different perspective with your research which brings an interesting counterpoint to papers from more experienced brethren.

The winners will be announced by the Provincial Grand Master at the Provincial Grand Lodge meeting in 2017 being held at Great Queens Street as part of the tri-centenary celebrations.There are two cups available to the winners, one to keep and the other to return after 1 year. There are two categories also, one below the Chair and the other for W Bros. New papers should be sent to W Bro Keith Marchington, PAGDC in the first instance to collate, index and create the database. Keith would therefore welcome any submissions you may have whether these are old or new.

Papers can be sent to Keith at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. The closing date is 1st May 2017. The winners will be given the opportunity to present their papers to the Installed Masters meeting in 2017. If the winner prefers, Keith can deliver them on their behalf.

 

Tips on writing Masonic papers

  1. Think about a title that sums up the theme of your piece and stimulates interest.
  2. Think about your audience. Will they include EAs, FCs or MMs? This will determine which level the Lodge will need to open in. If you deliver a paper to an audience consisting of all MMs you can still deliver this in the first degree.
  3. Write in the third person singular or plural.
  4. Do not exceed 30 minutes for any paper, otherwise people will fall asleep!
  5. Précis your paper after completion to make it punchier.
  6. Try to make it general, not specific to a lodge or province. This will enable it to be used in a wider Masonic audience.
  7. Use the internet. For example if you put in “Hiram,King of Tyre” it will ask you which of the 1.3 million articles you would like to read first! When you have read the first dozen or so you will probably have enough information for your paper! However, be cautious and always cross check information obtained from the internet, and be wary of breaching copyright.
  8. Use a spell checker to help you correct any typographical errors (English – UK, not English – USA!)
  9. Read it aloud slowly, and time it to ensure you will know how long it takes. DCs will want to know this to plan the evening, particularly the time for the festive board.
  10. If you need help, contact the Chairman W Bro Keith Marchington: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or the Provincial Grand Orator W Bro Stephen Townsend: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

W Bro Stephen Townsend PAGDC
Past Provincial Senior Grand Warden
The Provincial Grand Orator

Mentor

The Provincial Grand Mentor for the Province of Warwickshire is Peter Sorrill

W Bro Peter Sorrill

You can contact Peter via:

eMail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Tel: +44 (0)121 454 4422

Address: Provincial Grand Lodge of Warwickshire, Yenton Assembly Rooms, 73 Gravelly Hill North, Erdington , Birmingham B23 6BJ.

Grand Lodge has recommended all Provinces to put in place an effective Mentoring Scheme to Encourage the development of Initiates and Junior Brethren.

The Provincial Grand Master of Warwickshire RW Bro David Macey is particularly keen to ensure that each new member of the Craft in Warwickshire is made very welcome and valued by everyone.

It is the target of Peter Sorrill, the recently appointed Provincial Grand Mentor and his team, Geoff Walker, to have dialogue with all the Mentors in the Province in order to establish a closer bond. It is also intended to try to extend the parameters of the Mentoring Scheme to include the mentoring of all Brethren within a Lodge with whatever concerns they may have.

Should you wish to invite the Provincial Mentor or one of the Team to come to your Lodge and talk about Mentoring they would be delighted to do so.

Mentoring Booklets are available for all new Mentors and can be obtained from the Provincial Office, should you have any difficulty obtaining one, please This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

If you wish to contact the Provincial Grand Mentor or his Team with any problems or concerns please do not hesitate.

 

Communications Officer

The Provincial Communications Officer for the Province of Warwickshire is W Bro Ian Slesser

Guidelines for Lodge Communications Officers can be seen here

You can contact Ian as follows,

eMail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

tel: +44(0)7917 117079

Address: Provincial Grand Lodge of Warwickshire, Yenton Assembly Rooms, 73 Gravelly Hill North, Erdington , Birmingham B23 6BJ.

A generation of silence after the end of the Second World War and a bland 'No comment' from Grand Lodge on any matter were perhaps the causes of suspicion and allegations of secrecy that surrounded Freemasonry for the whole of that time. In 1984 the Grand Master HRH The Duke of Kent decided that the traditions and principles of Freemasonry were robust enough to withstand the attacks of the insidious as they had for two and a half centuries before. He therefore embarked on the policy of 'Openness' to destroy the myths that critics such as Stephen Knight had published in his book 'The Brotherhood'. The best national examples of this new policy are perhaps the special Communication of Grand Lodge held at Earls Court in 1992, when ladies, the media and other non-Masons were present, and the celebration of 'Freemasonry in the Community Week' in June/July 2002.

In the 1990's Freemasonry came under the most intense scrutiny that the Order had ever endured. It was the subject of two far-reaching inquiries by the Home Affairs Select Committee of the House of Commons and Freemasons will long remember the shameful treatment meted out to Michael Higham, the then Grand Secretary, by the Chairman of the Committee in full public gaze. It came as no surprise to Freemasons that the Committee found no evidence of wrongdoing by Freemasons or Freemasonry. Sadly, however, the Committee recommended the registration of Freemasons in certain areas of the public sector and the Government has accepted and in part implemented that recommendation.

Grand Lodge published a whole variety of leaflets and videos for public consumption, appointed John Hamill as its Director of Communications and enlisted the support of a Public Relations company. Encouraged by all this Provincial Grand Lodges started throwing open their doors to the public by holding open days. These have featured in Warwickshire for a number of years and have been outstanding successes. Private Lodges have done the same at their own venues. Many Lodges hold Gentlemen's Evenings when non-Masons (men and women) are given an explanation of Freemasonry – it is not unknown for gentlemen to come forward after such events and ask to become Freemasons. A notable event in Warwickshire is the Annual Service and senior Freemasons in full Masonic regalia walk in procession in public view to the Church.

Provincial Grand Masters were asked to assist in the process of openness by appointing Provincial Communications Officers. Ian Slesser performs this function in Warwickshire.

His principal duties are:

  • To act as the spokesman of the Province on all matters relating to Freemasonry in the Province
  • To promote Freemasonry
  • To respond to critics in newspapers and elsewhere
  • To arrange interviews for the Provincial Grand Master by the media
  • To appear on radio and television when required;
  • To publish a newsletter for all the Brethren in the Province
  • To highlight events in the Province
  • To report on the achievements of individual Freemasons
  • To challenge public authorities where there is evidence of discrimination against Freemasons
  • To keep up to date with the policies of Grand Lodge and to see that the same are disseminated within the Province
  • To exercise editorial control over and promote the Provincial website
  • To encourage greater use of the Internet and email for the transmission of matters Masonic
  • To support Lodges who hold Gentlemen's Evenings by providing speakers or material
  • To support Lodges or Masonic venues who hold Open Days by the provision of suitable material
  • To encourage Lodges to produce their own web sites
  • To encourage Lodges to publish their own Newsletters
  • To encourage Brethren to submit items of interest for publication to a wider audience
  • To produce leaflets about the Province for public consumption.

 

Secretary

The Provincial Grand Secretary for the Province of Warwickshire is Michael Reeve.

W Bro Michael Reeve

You can contact Michael via,

eMail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

tel:+44 (0)121 454 4422

Address: Provincial Grand Lodge of Warwickshire, Yenton Assembly Rooms, 73 Gravelly Hill North, Erdington , Birmingham B23 6BJ.

All communications to the Provincial Grand Lodge of Warwickshire should be addressed to the Provincial Grand Secretary.

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The Provincial Grand Lodge of Warwickshire
Yenton Assembly Rooms
73, Gravelly Hill North, Erdington
Birmingham B23 6BJ

Twitter: https://twitter.com/WarwickshirePGL

For Masonic enquiries:
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Tel: 0121 454 4422

The United Grand Lodge of England (UGLE) is the governing body for freemasons within England and Wales and districts overseas.