New Happiness Website
The Lodge of Happiness 7952 has launched a new website. The site has been created with the simple aims of publicising the Lodge, explaining what Freemasonry is all about and encouraging new members to join.
Commenting on the launch, Derek White, the Worshipful Master, said: "We believe that our new website is both interesting and informative and sets new standards in terms ease of use. It will show the wider public what our values are and let them know about the good work Freemasons do to help those less fortunate than ourselves”
"In launching the site, we are also issuing an open invitation to men of all faiths, who would like to develop themselves in a supportive, friendly environment, and help society in the process, to find out more about our Lodge and about Freemasonry in general.”
He concluded by noting "Our Lodge certainly lives up to its name; you won't find a happier place to become a Mason."
The website includes information about the Lodge of Happiness and Freemasonry in general. In addition there is information about the charitable work Masons do to help those in need and why Freemasonry is so relevant in today’s society.
Anyone who would like to approach the Lodge with a view to joining is welcome to make contact via: www.lodgeofhappiness.org.uk, or by telephoning Alastair on 0845 474 7952.
Treble and Double Doubles
W Bro Mike Hodkinson, Master, and the members of Lodge of Goodwill 3899 enjoyed a very special night at the Severn Street rooms when Mike initiated his father Norman at the grand age of 82.
The evening was even more special as with Mike's father becoming a mason the Lodge notched up a rare masonic treble and double. The treble is achieved by having three fathers and three sons in the same lodge concurrently, the double being two fathers being initiated by their respective sons.
To name names:
W Bro Neville Wright
W Bro Austin Watkin
W Bro Mike Hodkinson
W Bro David Wright
W Bro Neil Watkin
Bro Norman Hodkinson
(l-r) Austin Watkin, Neil Watkin, Norman Hodkinson, Mike Hodkinson, Neville Wright and David Wright
The latter two sets of father and son were those where the sons initiated their fathers, a very rare occurrence. And also, Bro Dad (Norman) must be amongst the oldest initiate in recent years.
In addition to all this, on the same night another double took place, it being the first time W Bro Neville Wright (member) and W Bro Brian Holdsworth (honorary member) attended the Lodge since both having this year received their 50 years Service to Freemasonry certificates from the Provincial Grand Master, RW Bro David Macey. posted 5 Dec 2010
Since the death of W Bro Bill Henstead an annual 9 Pin Skittles Match has been held between Earl Leofric Lodge 6081, Priors Lodge 8265 and Stoneleigh Lodge 725, with the winners being awarded the Bill Henstead Skittles Trophy. This year it was held at Stoneleigh Deer Park Golf Link with 33 people taking part. Everyone who attends has to play whether young or old, even those who have to use a stick to walk with.
The Trophy Cup was won by Stoneleigh Lodge with a score of 191 skittles, and the cup was presented by Edith Henstead, W Bro Bill's wife. The top scoring man was W Bro Len Rose of Stoneleigh Lodge with 25 skittles, the top scoring lady being Toni Sharples playing for Priors Lodge with 21 skittles. Priors Lodge came second with 179 skittles and Earl Leofric Lodge last with 163 skittles.
One of the advantages of winning the cup is that the winning Lodge has to organise the event the following year - maybe that is why Earl Leofric Lodge came last as they won it last year! It was a super evening enjoyed by all attending. £75.00 was raised for charity, which was split three ways. posted 21 Nov 2010
Hat Trick for the Sethi Family
The installation meeting of the Lodge of the East & West 9785 marked a very special, emotional and unique event in its history when Bro Rajesh Atul Sethi was installed into the chair of King Solomon by his father W Bro Ramesh Sethi P Prov JGD, Founder member and Past Master of the Lodge.
WM Rajesh Sethi (centre) being congratulated by his father W Bro Ramesh (l), and his brother Bro Ashwin Sethi (r)
Initiated by his father and the late RW Bro Stanley Lates OSM, Rajesh was the first initiate and hence the first 'home grown' Master of this Lodge, which was consecrated in July 2004.
Now in the chair, Rajesh joins his father Ramesh, and uncle W Bro Sudesh Sethi, who are also Masters of their respective mother Lodges, namely Lodge of Fellowship 5579 and The Clarendon Lodge 1166 in the Province of Cheshire. A unique occasion for this Masonic family to have three Masters in the chair the same year. posted 13 Nov 2010
W Bro Rob Pike, Master of Silhill Lodge 4786, accompanied by three of his work colleagues, completed this year's gruelling Race the Sun cycle, climb, canoe tri-challenge to raise funds for Action Medical Research (AMR).
"We started out at 06.11 am on the Saturday morning from the University campus at Penrith in the Lake District. After 22 miles on mountain bikes, 6 miles of which was off-road on a loose rocky path, we arrived at Helvellyn Mountain, the second highest in England at 3,100 feet. We dropped our bikes at Thirlmere village hall, and completed the mountain section in 4 hours and 5 minutes. In total it's about 8 miles and the ascent is 2,500 feet in vertical terms. We then returned to the bikes, and rode 2 miles to the car park at Lake Thirlmere and canoed around the furthest island and back again, a distance of about 2 miles. This took us 43 minutes and the record is 37, so we did quite well there! After that we had to cycle back to the University campus which was another 26 miles."
"In all we completed the course of 60 miles in about 11 hours and 50 minutes which included all stops, break and puncture repairs. An average of over 5 miles per hour self powered."
Rob Pike (far left) with his work colleagues at the peak of the hike section
During the event briefing the night before the start, the organisers showed the 240 participants a film about a little boy called Alfie, who at the age of 6 has had more strokes than he has had birthdays. He now has a massive scar down the left side of his head, and has terrible speech and coordination problems. It is not known why this happens and the sponsorship raised from the event will go towards finding out and trying to stop it happening to other children. The event should have raised £120,000, if everybody raises their team target of £2,000, and full details can be seen on the action for charity web site. AMR also funds other research regarding children's illness. See www.action.org.uk/ for full details of their work. posted 11 Nov 2010
Mayor Visits Author
Having been initiated and exalted in Dublin, in the Irish Constitution, W Bro John L Whiteley DFC, aged 92, has been a longstanding member of Knowle Lodge 8001 and Knowle Chapter 8001, and has written an autobiography based upon his service life during World War Two.
John originally joined the Army, but then after a short period of time was selected for RAF pilot training, after which he went on to become a Lancaster bomber pilot, later being awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross as a wartime bomber pilot.
He received his 50 year Service to Freemasonry Certificate earlier in the year (see Lodge News 25th May 2010) and also presented a copy of his book to the then Provincial Grand Master, RW Michael Price CBE, who had promoted him to PProvSGW at the Warwickshire Installed Master's Lodge.
More recently, the Mayor and Mayoress of Solihull visited John at the Star & Garter Residential Home, Solihull, where John now lives.
The photo shows the Mayor and Mayoress of Solihull, Councillor Ian Courts and Mrs Sheila Courts, on their recent visit to the home, being shown John's book, which was specifically requested by the Mayor prior to his visit. posted 5 Nov 2010
At their October meeting, Bro Charles McKenzie was installed into the Master's chair of Kenilworth Lodge.
The pictures, taken by Lodge Almoner W Bro Peter Jones, show Charles with the Installing Master W Bro Bob Turnbull ...
... and at the festive board with the Provincial Representative W Bro Roger Parker, Assistant Provincial Grand Master. posted 30 Oct 2010
The Lodge of Fellowship 5579 is celebrating its 75th Anniversary on Friday, 22nd October 2010, at Stirling Road, and will be initiating a new member to mark the event.
Dining is priced at a subsidised rate of £23 per person and is inclusive of wine/soft drinks. Invitations have already been sent to the lodges that form part of the family tree.
The Master, W Bro Ramesh Sethi looks forward to support from as many lodges/brethren as possible to make this a very special and memorable occasion.
For further information, booking and a copy of the summons please contact:
Bro John Rowland, Assistant Secretary
Tel: 07973 317774
Thomas Harper Call to Alms
W Bro David Wood, Master of the Thomas Harper Lodge 9162 reports thus:
At the last meeting of the Thomas Harper Lodge the work of the various non-Masonic charities became the topic of conversation, including the excellent work of 'Help for Heroes' and how the charity provides support for returning injured servicemen. The discussion then focused on the work of a related charity, one a bit closer to home, 'The Royal Centre for Defence Medicine' (RCDM).
The RCDM is a hospital based charity and is the first point in the UK to which wounded military personnel are returned. The previous facility was based at the Selly Oak Hospital and did a great deal in specialist areas to deal with 'battlefield injuries', such as burns, trauma, and plastic surgery. As the servicemen make their physical recovery, the RCDM also plays a crucial part in rehabilitating them back into society.
The Lodge, impressed by the work of the RCDM raised a donation of £255 from a raffle on the night. In finding out where to send the cheque, it came to light that the facility has been relocated and now resides in our very own Queen Elizabeth Hospital. The Queen Elizabeth are very proud to host the RCDM in Birmingham and a close working relationship has been established which means that military and civilian patients are treated alongside each other.
The charity, although locally based, has a truly national reach, and has all the attributes to gain support from local Masons for a number of its important fund raising projects and the RCDM has been recently supported by the Warwickshire Masonic Charitable Association.
So when non Masonic giving is discussed in your Lodge please don't miss the opportunity to help our local heroes....... posted 14 Sep 2010
W Bro Martyn Hale was the lucky winner of a day's outing to the Aston Martin testing ground. Here are pictures and his account of the day:
What is the common link of Aston Manor Lodge and Aston Martin Cars? The answer is Bro Amarjit Bahia who donated the prize of a days outing to Millbrook Testing ground in Bedfordshire for two persons at the Mark 'Valentines' Ball back in February 2010.
Well even more coincidence was that the winning ticket for the prize was collected by W Bro Tony Greenshields the WM who was in possession of the winning ticket bought on behalf of W Bro Martyn Hale, both of the Aston Manor Lodge 6323.
Last month, Martyn and his daughter Charlotte [wife of Bro Julian Davis Master Elect of the Lodge] arrived at Millbrook to be faced with the daunting task of driving six, yes 6, brand new Aston Martin cars around the various 5 tracks [well all but one was driven] Martyn says that:
Circuit 1 was Alan taking us around the 'Hill Climb' in a DBS, once with Al driving and twice around with Martyn at the wheel
Circuit 2 was Rupert driving a 'carbon black' Vantage V12 along the 'Straight Mile' once with Rupert at the wheel topping 170 mph and two with Martyn topping 154 mph
Circuit 3 was Richard Hope driving a Vantage V8 around the 'Handling Circuit' with me as a passenger. The first round was sedate the other two were an out and out demonstration of how this British lump of engineering catered for every twist and turn of the tight circuit with just one obstacle on the second lap, navigating our way past a Bentley.
Circuit 4 was with Chaz driving the brand new 4 door Rapide around the 'Hill Climb'. Again once with Chaz at the wheel and twice with Martyn, this circuit is full of twists, turns hills and straight lengths and despite being the second opportunity around this circuit was enthralling to say the least.
Circuit 5 was with Nick he took us out in the DB9 and it was in the 'Bowl'. A continuous circuit laned by minimum speed lanes, the outside being 90 mph and at 100 mph you can drive without holding the steering wheel, for the very brave and again each was its own experience.
Circuit 6 was with Steve driving the first round, then I did two circuits in a Vantage V8 using the 'City Route' which has very tight corners but ably demonstrated the torque of the vehicle, despite being a manual gearbox I was able to drop in 5th gear down to 25 mph without any groaning from the car.
So what was the day like? Well quite an eye opener, firstly my daughter Charlotte outpaced me on the straight mile by clocking 163 mph and a week later announced she was holding her second baby due in February 2011! When driving a car in this price range you ask yourself 'how do people justify the price'? But what is apparent is the quality workmanship both in engineering and craft right down to the double stitching of the leather upholstery and the Bang and Olufsen sound speakers that smoothly pop up either side of the front dashboard when you activate the sound system. Also the use of light weight materials in the construction of the all aluminium bonnet and the technology of the variable suspension and ceramic braking system enabling smooth and effortless control as was demonstrated on the 'Straight Mile'.
All ended with a delicious lunch and meeting so many people, it was certainly a day to remember. posted 12 Sep 2010
Vellum Lodge Dines on Turkish Kebab entertained by Belly Dancer
A first for Vellum Lodge 5845, attended by new as well as long standing members and guests, was celebrated at an informal dinner at the Mangal Restaurant near Stirling Road.
The Immediate Past Provincial Grand Master, RW Bro Michael Price CBE, who retired from office in June, will preside at the Athelstan Lodge 1333 Lodge of Instruction Festival on Thursday, 16th September.
Masonic etiquette sees a period of "purdah" during the immediate twelve months after the appointment of a new Provincial Grand Master, whereby the retired PGM will not attend meetings where his successor will be present, unless under exceptional circumstances. This inevitably restricts attendance at important events, and the opportunity to support the Festival will thus be all the more appreciated.
A copy of the invitation can be seen here. posted 10 Aug 2010
Coast to Coast for MND
Bro Iain Melvin, who was raised in Kenilworth Lodge 6939 in May, recently spent twelve days completing "Wainwright's Coast to Coast" walk. He was accompanied throughout by Herbert, his faithful Spaniel, raising funds to help awareness and research for sufferers of Motor Neurone Disease (MND) after one of his friends had been diagnosed with the condition two years earlier.
The walk starts at St Bees on the Cumbrian west coast and then follows 192 miles fell walking through the Lake District, North Pennines, Yorkshire Dales, Vale of Mowbray and North York Moors until the end point at Robin Hoods Bay in North Yorkshire on the North Sea.
Iain and Herbert, with his children, who walked with him on day one before sending him on his way.
Tradition dictates that you carry a pebble from St Bees beach and dip your boots in the Irish Sea and then when you get to the North Sea at Robin Hoods Bay you throw the pebble into the North Sea and dip your boots in there to signify the 'finish'.
During the walk Iain stayed in bunk houses, farms, B&B's and pubs at night time and explained to numerous people about MND whenever he met anyone, many of whom made donations. So far his efforts have raised over £15,000, which he hopes to exceed. Details of how to help him achieve this, and further photos and details of his adventure can be found at www.justgiving.com/IainMelvinC2CforMND posted 27 Jun 2010
Soldier turned Airman turns 50
Members and visitors at Knowle Lodge 8001 recently enjoyed a wonderful evening celebrating a 50 year certificate presentation by W Bro Michael Morris, Assistant Provincial Grand Master, to Past Master W Bro John Whiteley DFC, PProvSGW.
John, who will be 92 in June, was born in Nottingham and awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross following his service in the Royal Air Force. He afterwards worked for the Norwich Union Insurance Company for over 40 years, during which time he met Mary, who sadly died after 52 years marriage to John in 2003.
During a very varied life John studied Spanish, French and Greek, and achieved an Open University degree in Pure Maths. He has helped teach people to read and write, and with money matters and problems, as well as being a school Governor and active member of the Conservative Party for many years.
But his passion throughout his life has been the RAF, where he was Secretary of the 619 Squadron for many years. In the 1990s he was put in touch with the crew of a U Boat his RAF crew had bombed, thus forming an annual reunion which lasted for 10 years.
John was initiated into Chetwode Crawley Lodge 395, Dublin, in 1960 and became a joining member of Knowle Lodge in 1986, attending 125 of the 136 meetings held since then, and was installed as Master in 1997. He was honoured with Provincial Grand Rank in 2003, and promoted to Past Provincial Senior Grand Warden by the Provincial Grand Master on the floor of the Warwickshire Installed Masters' Lodge in November last year, in recognition of his service as a RAF Lancaster Bomber Pilot during the Second World War.
Last summer John published his memoirs entitled "Soldier turned Airman", and he is pictured (above, centre) with the Master of Knowle Lodge W Bro Brian Smith (left) and W Bro Michael Morris. posted 25 May 2010
W Bro Derek James, Almoner of Machen Lodge 1782, reports that their Worshipful Master, W Bro Leon Jacob and his wife Sarah, held a Ladies' Evening in March, from which the proceeds of £515 were donated to Help for Heroes. posted 22 May 2010
Tree Planted in Memory
Relatives, brethren and friends of W Bro Leon Jessel MBE, JP, gathered to plant a tree in his memory. Leon was a founder member of Junior Chamber Lodge 8902 and it's first Senior Warden in 1979. He was also a member of Streetly Lodge 7448, and a Grand Officer. The liquid amber tree, donated by Junior Chamber Lodge, was decided upon after many ideas were considered to achieve a lasting memorial following a legacy left to the Lodge by Leon. It was planted at the Walsall Leather Museum in reflection of his long association with the leather industry, and a memorial stone will be placed beneath the tree in due course.
Leon was a well known leather worker who came to the Black Country after fleeing the Nazi concentration camps. He became a popular figure in the industry after coming to live and work in Walsall. He was born into a Jewish family in the German city of Duisburg in 1918 and suffered repeated arrest in the Nazi persecution of the Jews. He was included in the token release of a batch of prisoners in 1939 and later obtained a visa to work in the UK.
He formed Jessel & Son Leather Goods Manufacturers, receiving the MBE for his services to exports in 1972.
Pictured (above) are Leon's Niece Kath Doody and Past Masters of Junior Chamber Lodge Mac Gregory and Keith Heap. posted 22 May 2010
The next meeting of Warwickshire Installed Masters Lodge 4538 will be very brief, business being confined to formal necessities.
And then . . . . . . a relaxed evening and high quality dinner with our Ladies.
Bros Dave Marlow and Ivan Smart of Greville Lodge 4773 have returned safely from the challenge of their winter climb of Mount Toubkal, part of the High Atlas Mountains and the highest peak in Northern Africa. They suffered temperatures of minus ten degrees celsius during two overnight camps on the Mountain face, were very much affected by Altitude Sickness and are recovering from inevitable blisters to their feet.
But they made it to the top (see picture) and it has all been made worthwhile by the increase in funds raised for Acorns Hospice, which was originally aimed at £1 for each of the 4167 metres climbed, but which has now risen to the magnificent sum of £6,500.
Further news and pictures can be seen on the Greville Lodge web sitewww.grevillelodge.org.uk/pages/toubkal.html posted 19 May 2010
Pilgrimage Nears Completion
W Bro Hosey Davoudian, Provincial Grand Steward, is nearing the completion of his personal challenge to visit all of the other St John's Lodges as well as all of the other Provinces, on the UK mainland, during his year as Master of the St John's Lodge 2811 in Warwickshire.
So far Hosey has visited 25 of their Installation meetings and 8 other Provinces which don't have a St John Lodge, making a total of 33 out of the 48 Provinces within UGLE (which includes three which are in the Isle of Man, Jersey and Guernsey, off the mainland). That leaves just 12 more Provinces, in which the other 9 St John's Lodges are situated.
This will be a remarkable achievement, possibly establishing a record – can anyone claim to surpass it? posted 19 Apr 2010
A party of 49 recently made the trip to London by Coach to visit the Library and Museum at Grand Lodge. Their guided tour included the Grand Temple and they also had the benefit of visiting the Egyptian Temple No 10.
The event was organised under the banner of Meridian Lodge 9003 and after a few hours free in London the party returned to Warwickshire for a meal at Kenilworth Golf Club.
The Library and Museum is open to all visitors, Monday to Friday, but visits on a Saturday require pre booking. The members of the party on this occasion included many partners of Masons as well as non Masons and newly initiated Brethren who found the building and its contents a very worthwhile experience. The Library and Museum of Freemasonry is a registered museum housing one of the finest publicly available collections of Masonic material in the world. For further information seewww.freemasonry.london.museum/ posted 27 Mar 2010
Athelstan Help Lift Off
During his year as Master of Athelstan Lodge 1333, W Bro Kevin Garner raised money for the Warwickshire and Northamptonshire Air Ambulance, a Garden Party, Ladies Night and raffles contributing to the total.
This resulted in W Bro Frank Salt and W Bro Malcolm Owen presenting a cheque for £1003 to the WNAA at their base at Coventry Airport.
The helicopter can be airborne in 45 seconds and can reach anywhere in Warwickshire within 9 minutes, and Northamptonshire in 15 minutes. It is the fastest and busiest helicopter in the country and responds to around 110 emergency calls every month.
The Air Ambulance is supported entirely through voluntary donations and costs £1.4 million a year to operate. The service operates 7 days a week during daylight hours, and the team includes three Pilots, twelve Doctors and twelve Paramedics. posted 23 Feb 2010
Acorns Children's Hospice will be the sole beneficiary of money raised by Greville Lodge 4773 for a winter climb of Mount Toubkal, part of the High Atlas Mountains and the highest peak in Northern Africa.
Bro Ivan Smart and Bro David Marlow, both of Greville Lodge, have been under the instruction of Squadron Sergeant-Major Marcus Heslop of the 2nd Royal Tank Regiment – 2RTR - during their training. This has involved extended trips to Snowdonia during January & February.
A winter climb of this altitude presents its own problems compared to a normal trek. W Bro David Butcher, a Past Master of Greville Lodge, who is the event patron and Vice Chair of Trustees at Acorns said "The Sergeant-Major will ensure that they are fit for the climb and prepared for the cold weather, however no one can train for the effects of altitude sickness. We all wish them every success."
The pair intend to raise at least £4,167, One Pound for every Metre of the Mountains height and a total sum close to that required every day to run just one of Acorns three hospices , to enable them to care for approximately 600 children with life limiting conditions. They had achieved £3,400 (82%) of their target a week before the climb, half of this being donated by individual masons, and will continue collecting after their return.
The Team are pictured with Chris Reed, Head of Care at Acorns Birmingham, during a recent visit to the Selly Oak Hospice. (l-r) David Marlow, Marcus Heslop, Chris Read, Ivan Smart, David Butcher. posted 23 Feb 2010
A Very Special Installation Meeting
W Bro Hosey Davoudian, Provincial Grand Steward, had long cherished the idea of forming some sort of link between all the St John's Lodges in England and Wales and realised that the ideal opportunity presented itself on the occasion of his installation as Master of his mother Lodge, St John's 2811 in the Province of Warwickshire.
He contacted Provincial Offices, Lodge Secretaries and Worshipful Masters and had his patience and diligence rewarded when no less than 41 ruling Masters or members of St John's Lodges from around the Country (representing a total of twenty eight St John's Lodges registered in the United Grand Lodge of England) attended. In addition to the Provincial Grand Master, RW Bro Michael J Price, CBE, and other distinguished guests from Provincial Grand Lodge of Warwickshire, eleven ruling Masters or representatives of other Coventry Lodges attended the installation in Coventry Masonic Hall in December last year.
Amongst the attendees were representatives from the three most senior St John's Lodges on the roll of the United Grand Lodge of England, being St John the Baptist 39 (Exeter), St John's 70 (Plymouth) and St John's 90 (London). Other Worshipful Masters and their representatives came from places as far afield as Abergavenny, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, Salford and Grays.
A light lunch was provided in Coventry Masonic Hall to give brethren the chance to mingle and get to know each other over a pint and a sandwich before finding themselves seats in the light and spacious Temple.
Before the Installation Ceremony, the Provincial Grand Master of Warwickshire joked that he would be grateful not to hear visitors saying "we don’t do it that way!" and, of course, his wish was granted. However it must be said that the ceremony was conducted to the highest possible standard according to Warwickshire’s working and enabled the visitors to make the enjoined 'daily advancement in Masonic knowledge', for which they were all most grateful.
At the end of the meeting several Lodges made presentations of documents detailing the history of their own St John's Lodge to the newly installed Master.
The Festive Board was held in the 'large dining room', which was filled to capacity, and new friends were made, links forged and moderate (!) quantities of wine and port washed down an excellent meal. The newly installed Master expressed the hope that the brethren of the various St John's Lodges would keep in touch with each other and floated the idea of forming either a travelling St John's Lodge to meet in the various Temples around the country, or an Association of St John's Lodges. His hope was to meet 2 or 3 times a year to work demonstration ceremonies, receive talks and, more particularly, to promote the "happy means of creating friendship among those who must otherwise have remained at a perpetual distance".
A 28 page commemorative booklet was produced by W Bro Hosey to provide attendees with a brief history of all St John's Lodges from the earliest, St John the Baptist 39 (11th July 1723), to the most recently formed, St John's 8817 (8th April 1978).
There was much genuine enthusiasm to build upon the foundations laid at Coventry and it is only fitting to end this report with a quote from that history booklet:
"May the spirit of Brotherhood in St John's Lodges ever enrich each and every one of us as well as those Brethren who are yet to be born". So mote it be.
So mote it be. posted 20 Jan 2010
W Bro Steve Cox accompanied by his wife, Lis, both dental surgeons, travelled to the Peruvian Amazon to once again work for two weeks with the Christian charity The Vine Trust www.vinetrust.org
Steve and Lis in action
They worked on a specially converted former Royal Naval fleet diving tender, Amazon hope 2, which is equipped with basic medical and dental treatment facilities, and brings medical and dental care to the people of the Peruvian Amazon who have little or no access to basic facilities.
The Vine Trust has orphanages and street boy projects in various parts of Peru and since 2001 has run the medical project with 2 converted boats, Amazon Hope 1 and Amazon Hope 2, along with their partners in Peru, Union Biblica Peru. (The Scripture Union in Peru).
One of the converted host boats
The medical project visits almost 200 communities in the Amazon basin complex on a quarterly basis to provide medical and dental care to the needy people of the jungle region.
The work for the doctors is mainly dealing with chest and intestinal problems caused by poor diet, lack of clean drinking water and parasites such as tape worm. The dental work is mostly extracting teeth for the relief of pain, the tooth decay rate is very high.
A typical Peruvian community visited
The eventual aim is that the project be run by the Peruvian people themselves, at the moment it relies heavily on volunteer doctors, dentists and nurses to provide the care.
This is the second successive year that Steve has worked with The Vine Trust Medical Project and he and Lis intend to go again in the Autumn of 2010.
They pay all their own expenses for the trip, of approximately £2000 each and will be happy to receive any donations towards these. They would also like to thank the brethren who have already supported their work in Peru. posted 11 Jan 2010
That's my Boy
In its 133 year history, the St Michael's Lodge 1630 has seen the Initiation of its first Lewis, Dr Paul John Dimitri, by a ruling Master. He was initiated in a delightful manner by his father W Bro Dr Wade R Dimitri. The Lodge has likewise witnessed, for the first time, the long presentation, full explanation and exhortation of the Masonic Apron, given by W Bro Dr Joseph F K Marzouk, on behalf of the Worcestershire Provincial Grand Stewards Lodge 9142. Joseph is a Thoracic Surgeon colleague of the WM, a Cardiac Surgeon at the University Hospital in Coventry. Paul is a Consultant Paediatrician in Sheffield.
The newly initiated Brother was very well prepared in his response to his Toast at a very jovial Festive Board, comparing the vision of himself when ‘properly prepared' with what was undoubtedly an almost daily spectacle in the Surgeons changing room. posted 11 Jan 2010
Young at Heart
W Bro Ron Brookes of David Garrick Lodge 4243 celebrated his 86th birthday in an unusual way.
He undertook a sponsored walk from his home in Honeyborne to the Masonic Hall in Stratford, a distance of 12 miles; the result was £157 for the 2012 Festival.... and there may be more to come! posted 6 Dec 2009
On 11th November 2009, Members of the Warwickshire Royal Air Force Lodge 9456 visited the National Memorial Aboretum at Alrewas, Staffordshire, to attend the Armistice Day Service, and were joined by a deputation from the Province of Staffordshire.
Whilst the main service was attended by the Duke of Wessex, the Lodge held their own remembrance service in the Masonic Garden, conducted by the Provincial Chaplain of Staffordshire.
Afterwards, W Bro Ken Wilkinson (pictured centre, at the corner of the chequered pavement), who served in the RAF and in particular the Battle of Britain as a Spitfire Pilot, gave an explanation of the white stones resting in the garden. These came from China and originally both were smooth. One has now been 'roughed up' to represent the rough ashlar. A donation was made to the National Memorial Arboretum by the members of the lodge of £200.
Later in the day a meeting was held at the Atherstone Masonic Hall where an initiation ceremony took place. A further £400 was raised for charity. posted 22 Nov 2009
A Visit from Lanarkshire
The Provincial Grand Master, RW Bro Michael J Price CBE, presided at St Peter's Lodge 7334 at the Yenton Assembly Rooms when Bro Martin Parrack was installed into the Chair of King Solomon.
Phot, left: James L Jack, Martin Parrack, Michael Price
Also present were visiting brethren from Essex which included the Worshipful Master of their Lodge of St Peter 1024.
W Bro Bob Townsend was the Installing Master and carried out a faultless ceremony. It was also a special evening for the new Master, as 21 years ago his father was installed into the chair of St Peter's.
Photo, above right: The Officers of St Peter's Lodge 7334 posted 22 Nov 2009
4th to 6th November 2009 - the long awaited Greek return visit [See History in the Making article posted 16th July 2009 for the earlier story] took place when six members of the newly founded Periandros Lodge No 153 (Greek Constitution) from Corinth arrived to witness one of their number, Bro Thrassivoulos Papangelis, become a joining member of Trinity Lodge 254. Among the visitors was Thrassy's father, W Bro Dinos Papangelis, the WM of Lodge Periandros, who like his son had originally been a member of Lodge Bellerofontes.
On the evening of their arrival they were all invited to join four Trinity Brethren, W Bro Tim Goddin (the organiser of the visit) W Bro David Handford (Master) W Bro Tony Richards and Bro Stuart Reed, for fellowship, drinks and a reception meal at the ancient Town Wall Tavern in Ryley Street near the Belgrade Theatre in Coventry.
The following day saw the same Brethren, supplemented by the exuberant W Bro Rex Perkins of Abbey Lodge, conduct their Greek brothers on a tour of Kenilworth and Warwick Castles and a subsequent stroll around the centre of Stratford upon Avon (including a memorable stop-off at a genuine olde worlde timber framed tea and coffee shop where delicious homemade cake and scones were consumed). Later a light lunch was taken at the Saxon Mill Restaurant at Guy's Cliff.
On the same evening, 5th November 2009, all attended the regular Trinity Lodge meeting, which was a Past Masters' night, where there was a warm welcome from the Worshipful Master and where they witnessed an excellent Third Degree ceremony. 64 Brethren were present including 29 visitors, of whom 10 were from Abbey Lodge on their annual visit, as well as another local Greek Brother, W Bro S Kiosses, the Master of Elkington Lodge 1016.
At the festive board, the WM presented each of the Greek Brethren with a Trinity bicentenary firing glass and W Bro Dinos gave a gracious reply to W Bro Goddin's visitors' toast and then donated to the Lodge a beautiful, small boxed metal plaque commemorating their visit.
Early on the following day the guests left by train for London. posted 14 Nov 2009
Bro Piers Clinton-Tarestad of Silhill Lodge 4786 has decided to follow in the footsteps of other Brethren in his lodge by running the London Marathon. He is doing this to raise funds for the Cystic Fibrosis (CF) Trust. At 26 miles / 43 km this is more than the average evenings perambulations but is sure to give him plenty of time to learn ritual! CF is one of the most common life threatening diseases in the UK and having experienced first hand the impact it has on a family he is keen to raise as much money as possible in support of this worthy cause. Should any brethren wish to support him, please visit his page at www.virginmoneygiving.com/piersct [link no longer valid] or contact him through his lodge secretary. posted 14 Nov 2009
Sigh of Relief from Lord Leycester
A round of applause greeted the Redditch and Bromsgrove branch of "Breath Easy" when Treasurer Malcolm Twiss announced a donation of £150 from the Lord Leycester Lodge 7889, the result of a raffle held at their summer lunch held at Alderson House in Warwick.
"Breathe Easy" was nominated by the Worshipful Master, W Bro Graham Eden and wife Laura.
The Breathe Easy support group network provides support and information for people living with a lung condition, and for those who look after them. For more information about Breathe Easy, how to find your nearest group and how to start a group, see www.lunguk.org/supporting-you/breathe-easy (limk removed) posted 4 Nov 2009
The 1333 Trust made its first charitable donation to assist a severely disabled young Atherstone boy in the purchase of a new wheelchair. The grant was made through the 'Atherstone Motor Show' committee and will go towards the overall £2,500 cost.
The donation is important because it marks the trust fulfilling its charitable obligations and enabled the show committee to speedily raise the remainder of the funds.
Pictured are (left) the Master of Athelstan Lodge 1333, W Bro Jonathan Bowley, presenting the cheque to Bro Gerard Somers, one of the Motor Show organisers, with other members of Athelstan Lodge and The 1333 Trust and the Motor Show Committee. posted 19 Oct 2009
When W Bro Geoff Timms, one of the Founders of Lord Leycester Lodge 7889, left a sum of money to be used for the benefit of the Lodge, the members decided to use some of his legacy to renew their Officers' Collars, with the original jewels being transferred to them.
The old collars were sent to a group of English Constitution Masons in Bermuda, recently visited by W Bro Frank Corrigan, Master of St Johns Lodge 2811, who had reported the shortage of Masonic Regalia in the Constitution.
Masonic re-cycling and charity in action?
Details of Freemasonry in Bermuda can be found (with musical accompaniment) on their website: www.freemasonryinbermuda.com/ posted 8 Oct 2009
Ritual with a Difference!
W Bro Ian George, IPM of Tudor Lodge 1792, would welcome all those interested in seeing different variations of our ceremonies to "the country" on Friday 20th October. He will be installing his successor in the Richard Whittington Lodge 7534 in Gloucester, which is a "Services" Lodge, consecrated in 1957.
The Lodge has its OWN ritual, with an extended Inner Workings (which obviously can only be seen by Installed Masters), and will be opened at 6.00pm. Dinner, with wine, is around £18.
Ladies Night helps Cancer Research
The Worshipful Master of the Lodge of St Blaise 6113, W Bro Gerry Perks, made a presentation to Jan West of Cancer Research UK, Coventry. The cheque was for £1,200 and was mainly raised on his Ladies Night held earlier in the year. An addition from the Lodge's Social Fund, as announced that evening by the chairman, W Bro Peter Woodfield, helped to increase the amount for the charity.
Cancer Research UK was chosen by the WM's wife, Mrs Julie Perks, as she suffered from breast cancer in 2004 and has since made a full recovery.
Pictured are Jonathan Amies, Lodge Treasurer, Jan West and Gerry Perks. posted 8 Oct 2009
Severn Street will host the final meeting of Tuscan Lodge on Friday 25th September. WM Roy Piddington will be short of Officers on the night (they now only have six active members) and seeks volunteers to help out. He can be contacted direct at home on 01527 542110 . posted 13 Sep 2009
Mike Hailwood Lodge hits the Road
As previously reported, members of Warwickshire's newest Lodge are preparing to hit the road and hold a Masonic meeting on the Isle of Man.
Over 20 brethren of the Lodge, accompanied by visitors, ladies and non masonic guests, will be packing up their panniers and heading for Liverpool on Friday 25th of September to catch a ferry to the fabled home of the TT circuit where the name of Mike Hailwood has become part of the island’s folklore.
If it wasn't remarkable enough for a Warwickshire Motorcycle Lodge to be holding a meeting in the Province of the Isle of Man, the ceremony will include David Hailwood. David is the son of the legendary racer after whom the Lodge was named, and is a firm favourite within the TT racing community in his own right.
Assured of strong local support from their hosts for the weekend, Arthur Stanley Lodge 3732, plus the Provincial Grand Lodge of the Isle of Man, and our own Provincial Grand Master and Provincial Grand Secretary, it promises to be a memorable and well supported event. This is not least because of the strong links that have been formed since the Lodge's consecration in April 2008 with the island and its resident Masonic and motor cycling communities including the TT Riders Association and other similar charities.
A packed weekend is planned combining the stunning Manx scenery, two wheeled heritage and some well deserved relaxation in the form of the odd gin & tonic … or two! All in addition to the focal point of the trip, the Lodge meeting on the evening of Saturday 26th September and subsequent Banquet with Ladies, which non Masons are welcome to attend, at Freemasons' Hall, Douglas (pictured).
History in the Making
The best time to write history is whilst it is being made, and Trinity Lodge 254 are very fortunate to have W Bro Anthony Richards recording it as time passes by. Trawling through old minute books is all very well when researching content for a publication to commemorate a milestone anniversary, but the author of Trinity Lodge's next such milestone (300th, 2055?) will be grateful for Tony's contemporary notes.
Recent examples include details from their May meeting at which senior Past Master W Bro Stuart Leist received his 50 year certificate from the Deputy Provincial Grand Master VW Bro Alan Wellan, and the Brethren resolved to donate to Lodge Lord Byron 150 (Greek Constitution) meeting in Corfu the set of three tracing boards originally gifted to the Lodge in 1959 by their eldest daughter Abbey Lodge 432.
The boards and their container were later boxed up and posted to Greece, with an inscribed plaque added; and the Worshipful Master, who was fortuitously in Greece on his holidays in June, was then able to make a formal presentation of them to the Worshipful Master of Lodge Lord Byron.
Also in June, Trinity Lodge combined with its daughter The Lodge of Serenity 9312 in hosting a novel joint Ladies Festival Sunday Luncheon at the Windmill Village Hotel Allesley. Over 100 people attended in support of the respective Worshipful Masters, W Bro Brian Cordery (Serenity) and W Bro David Handford (Trinity) (each of whom was a member of both lodges) and their ladies, and enjoyed an excellent repast accompanied by superb music from the Burbage Silver Band and their two soloists. A raffle raised £370 for Acorns Hospice. posted 16 Jul 2009
Lodge Secretary W Bro Roger Schofield reports that in glorious sunshine, the members of Guy's Cliffe Lodge and their families marked the 30th anniversary of its consecration by holding a garden party at the home of the Worshipful Master, W Bro Doug Squires. Over 60 people attended the event.
The guests included founders W Bros J Smith PJGD, PProvSGW, DJ Barfield PProvJGW, PProvGSwdB (Worcs), VBJ Barrell PProvGSwdB, together with W Bros P Battisson PProvGSwdB, PP Brayshaw PProvSGW, TR Gurney PProvSGW, CM (who had travelled from Devon for the occasion), KWD Hoddle PProvSGW and BW Ogden-Metherell PProvJGW.
The Worshipful Master welcomed everyone and thanked the founders for the work and energy they put in to creating the Lodge. W Bro Smith outlined the meetings held by the Formation Committee between February 1978 and March 1979 prior to the Consecration ceremony and issue of the warrant.
W Bro Barrell thanked W Bro Smith for having the foresight and being the driving force behind the acquisition of the property which has now resulted in excellent Masonic Rooms at Guy’s Cliffe, Warwick.
Overall, a very happy and memorable occasion.
Many thanks Roger, for letting us in on your anniversary party, and congratulations and all best wishes for the next 30 years and beyond. posted 29 Jun 2009
Knocking at the Door?
The June meeting of Warwickshire Installed Masters' Lodge, at which our Deputy PGM, VW Bro Alan Wellan, was declared Master Elect, saw several joining members, the presentation of a further eleven gavels and a magnificent demonstration of the Building of King Solomon's Temple.
The gavels were presented by the 2012 Festival Director W Bro David Macey to the latest Lodges which have achieved their target, these being Griffin Installed Masters 9737, St Barbara's 4930, Machen 1782, Earl Leofric 6081, Stoneleigh 725, St John's 2811, Loyal Travellers 2733, Happiness 7952, Etone 5981, Loyalty 4340 and Coventry Foundation 4543. David was delighted to present the beautiful gavels and congratulated the Lodges for their enthusiasm and continuing efforts. Pictured are the Masters or representatives of the Lodges which received their award, with David wearing a happy grin in front of the banner.
After the meeting W Bro James Rogers from the Province of West Lancashire quite literally completed building his model of the Temple whilst narrating the origins, history, practicalities and details of its construction. His model was based upon the description and dimensions contained in the Bible, and was built in accordance with his interpretation, not necessarily shared by all.
He explained the various parts which made up the structure, drawing specific attention to the Holy of Holies created as a dwelling place for God's spirit, and eloquently outlined the importance of the building, despite it being relatively small, entrance to which would have been restricted to Kings and High Priests alone. The two great pillars at the entrance, Boaz and Jachin, were a major feature of the Temple and were explained at some length. The ornaments and furniture, and the materials from which they were made, were of the highest quality, with extensive use of gold, silver and cedar. Not brass however, this not having been discovered at that time, biblical references more likely to have referred to bronze or some similar alloy.
In conclusion, prior to the dramatic dimming of lights and switching on of the model's illuminations, James outlined the philosophical relevance of the Temple, "mine house" representing man himself, with our Masonic ritual weaving through the lessons we can learn from the symbolism contained therein. Pictured is W Bro James Rogers next to the part completed structure. posted 19 Jun 2009
The Warwickshire Provincial Grand Directors of Ceremonies Lodge received a presentation from W Bro Keith Marchington, one of the five Authorised Orators for the Province led by the Provincial Grand Orator W Bro Trevor Sturt.
His first paper was entitled "Building the Temple" and homed in on the relevance of the North East to a newly initiated member. It outlined the 1st degree ceremony, this being the start of a journey eventually leading to the conclusion of Pure and Antient Masonry found in the Royal Arch. The initiate represents the foundation stone upon which the building lies, and teaches him to extend this principle into society through high standards of morality and virtue.
The second paper, "Jacob's Ladder", reflected upon the internationally recognised emblem representing Joseph's vision of the journey from earth to heaven. Appearing on the first degree tracing board, where the three cardinal virtues of freemasonry - Faith, Hope and Charity - are described, the ladder has been depicted in a variety of different ways and was a prominent feature in the eighteenth century, appearing on jewels and drawings.
Further information about the Oration scheme can be seen on the website on the Contacts/Orator page. posted 19 Jun 2009
Beneath the Stars
The Brethren of Charterhouse Lodge No 5690 recently donated £250 to the 5th/80th Coventry Scout Group. This enabled the Group to purchase ten new tents which have already been put to good use at camps for the Scout and Cub sections, both of which gave a resounding "Thumbs Up" to each and every new tent (pictured).
The volunteer run Group, which includes Scouts, Beavers and Cubs, relies on fundraising events and the generosity of organisations such as ourselves. The Group Scout Leader expressed how very grateful they were for the donation and sent a selection of photographs showing the tents in use at the camps. posted 9 June 2009
Stoneleigh Lodge No 725 will be holding their Summer BBQ this coming weekend, Saturday, 6 June.
Spiced up with an Indian flavour, this popoular event will start at 3:00pm and continue until late in the evening at a cost of just £10 for adults and £5 for children under 12 years.
Hertford Lodge No 3208's £3,600 lift supports appeal for Children's Hospice
Members of Hertford Lodge No 3208 in Sutton Coldfield gave super support to Acorns Children's Hospice Fragile Lives appeal, with a £3,600 donation raised from their social events held last year.
Bro Patrick Wood, Mrs Sarah Rea, W Bro Mark Rea, and Sanjay Jagatia - Bro Patrick Wood, Mrs Sarah Rea, W Bro Mark Rea, and Sanjay Jagatia
Mike Lovell, the Lodge's social secretary said "Sarah knew of the care that Acorns gives and we really put our support behind the local charity's work".
Mike Tague, Acorns Children's Hospice Regional Fundraiser said "This donation is simply great: the Lodges play a vital part in supporting care for Acorns children and families, who need all the help available from the community".
Pictured are (left to right): Bro Patrick Wood, Mrs Sarah Rea, W Bro Mark Rea, and Sanjay Jagatia (Acorns' Community Fundraiser for Birmingham and Warwickshire). posted 29 May 2009
At the next meeting brethren will have the opportunity to witness a re-enactment of "The Building of King Solomon's Temple" which will include the construction of Solomon's Temple on the floor of the Lodge. This meeting takes place at 5.00pm on Thursday 11th June 2009 at the Warwickshire Masonic Temple, Stirling Road, Birmingham B16 9SB.
Full details are on the poster here. posted 17 May 2009
Warwickshire Provincial Grand Directors of Ceremonies Lodge No 9620
All Craft Masons are cordially invited to attend and enjoy Orations entitled "Building of the Temple" and "Jacobs Ladder", together with an explanation of the Orations Scheme, at the next Lodge meeting on Friday 12th June. The presentation will be given by W Bro Keith Marchington, PAGDC, PProvSGW, at the Masonic Rooms, Alderson House, Warwick, followed by Dinner.
At the forthcoming Installation meeting of the Lodge of Goodwill 3899 W Bro Neil Watkin will (subject to successful election, of course) be installing his father, Bro Austin Watkin, into the Chair of King Solomon. Neil initiated and passed his father when he was Master in 2002/2003, and subsequently raised him as well. The current WM of the Lodge has kindly agreed that he can install him too.
The unique Bristol Workings of an Initiation Ceremony will be demonstrated by St Nicholas Lodge 4561 from the Province of Bristol at Stirling Road, on Tuesday 31st March. Attendance at the Installed Masters' Lodge is usually restricted to Master Masons, but on this occasion, for obvious reasons, Entered Apprentices and Fellow Crafts will be very welcome to attend.
Keeping their Eye on the Ball!
Members of the William Webb Ellis Lodge 9754 recently made a trip to Ireland as guests of the Metropolitan Lodge in Dublin.
The trip was arranged by Bro Ciaran McDonnall in Ireland and W Bros Des Swarbrigg and Mick Tarrant of WWE, to coincide with the 6 Nations rugby match between England and Ireland. Members of the Lodge travelled over on Friday for the Lodge meeting and festive board and stayed for the match on Saturday. They then travelled back to England on the Sunday.
Photographs are of the magnificent Dublin Lodge rooms (below) and the English contingent (above, from left to right; W Bro John Partridge, Bro Nigel Mullin, W Bro Roy Pebody, W Bro Nigel Headley, W Bro Des Swarbrigg, PProvAGDC, W Master, W Bro John Swift, W Bro Richard Tarrant and W Bro Mick Tarrant PProvAGDC.)
The Masonic content of the weekend was undoubtedly considerably more satisfying than the rugby result for the members of WWE, but perhaps not in the opinion of the Brethren from Metropolitan Lodge! posted 15 Mar 2009
Lodge of Warwick Founder Member, and from 2007 Honorary Member, W Bro John Edward 'Jack' Smith celebrated his 100th birthday on February 12th and 15 days later, Friday 27th February, was presented with the Provincial Grand Master's Certificate in recognition of his 50 years service to freemasonry.
The presentation was made by Deputy PGM Alan Wellan, pictured with Jack at his home in Charlecote, in the presence of Lodge of Warwick WM Steven Price, Secretary W Bro John Long and Almoner W Bro Mervyn Kimberley. There was a delightful amount of conversation and reminiscing during the afternoon!
Jack is hail and hearty and keeps a watchful eye on the progress of the lodge, a lodge to which he has given great service and which he still attends from time to time. Much of his working life was as a renowned baker his start being during school holidays and at weekends when a young schoolboy and then full time (and that was for as much as 11 hours a day, 7 days a week ! ) from the age of 14 . He and his late wife Flo were pillars of the community in Barford where they had their bakery business until retirement in 1965 ; imagine, if you can , the half-cwt pork pie made by Bro Jack for a village War Effort fund raising event in the Winter of 1946.
He was Worshipful Master in 1970 , appointed PProvAGDC in 1976, PProvGReg in 1987 and PProvSGW in 1992.
We wish Bro Jack well and congratulate him on his achievements. posted 15 Mar 2009
Something for All
Lunch on the Lake?
W Bro Mervyn Shenton, Almoner and Communications Officer for Boldmere Lodge 4704 reports that they recently enjoyed a Sunday Luncheon at the Peninsular Restaurant on Chester Road, Streetly, Sutton Coldfield.
The very hard working Charity Steward W Bro Palmer organised the event, at which a raffle was also held. The grand sum of £970 was raised on the day for the burns unit at the Children's Hospital. The restaurant held a further four raffles on the following four days and raised another £900 for the charity.
Very well done to all of you in the Lodge - a lovely example of how social events can do so much for the community. posted 15 Mar 2009
The brethren of Aston Manor Lodge 6323 are holding a rather special raffle at the festive board of their meeting on Tuesday 21st April, at Yenton Assembly rooms. The prize is an invitation for two people to a driving event at Millbrook Proving Ground. This will include an Aston Martin with a Performance Driving Instructor around the ground, followed by a complimentary lunch. Proceeds from the raffle will go to the 2012 Festival.
To take part in the raffle you will have to attend the Lodge so first enjoy their meeting and then chance your arm. Shrewd punters will of course work out the excellent odds - fire regulations mean the maximum number of participants will be just 90! Applications from the Lodge Secretary Bro SN Abel on 02476 676 100 . posted 16 Feb 2009