||Manchester Districts (City Derby and City Sykes)
The evening of Wednesday 27th May was a very special one at Manchester Shofar Lodge 7441. It was the installation of their Master Elect, WBro Henry ‘Nigel’ Pickering PProvJGW
In attendance were several Grand Officers including WBro Warwick R Davenport PSGD PAPGM who was there as the representative of the Provincial Grand Master. There was also a collection of Provincial DC’s.
The Lodge was opened and in due course WBro Pickering was installed into the Chair of King Solomon by WBro David Bannister PProvSGD. WBro Davenport gave the address to the Master, his ritual being word perfect and delivered with much gravitas. All the officers were invested including WBro Michael Goodman PProv AGDC as Director of Ceremonies. He commented that this was a difficult job following in the footsteps of WBro Pickering and the late WBro Jack Levene but he assured the members of Manchester Shofar Lodge he would not let them down.
As ever, the food at the social board was of an extremely high quality with two ribs of beef being paraded around the room to great applause. All the members of Manchester Shofar Lodge and the multitude of guests left Bridge St after a very enjoyable evening. One guest was heard saying that he thinks that although Shofar is a Past Masters/Dining Lodge, it is so welcoming that it should be classified as a ‘Family Lodge’.
Newly Installed WM of Manchester Shofar Lodge Nigel Pickering at the Social Board with WBro Warwick Davenport PSGD PAPGM; WBro David Bannister PProvSGD
Thursday 7th May, Bridge St was the venue for a special evening marking the Personal 50th of WBro Barry Nield PAGDC
The lodge was opened by the Worshipful Master, WBro Colin Firth, there was a report, upon which WBro David Cowan, the Provincial Deputy Grand Director of Ceremonies, was admitted. WBro Cowan announced that the APGM for the Manchester Area, WBro Christopher Welton, PJGD, accompanied by a District Delegation were outside the door of the Lodge and demanded admission.
After welcoming the APGM, the Worshipful Master offered WBro Welton the gavel which he was pleased to accept, he then introduced the Deputation; which included WBro David Basger APGP. From the City Sykes District, WBro Chris Prax - District Chairman & WBro David Hudson- District Chairman City Derby
WBro Welton also introduced a ‘galaxy’ of Grand Officers and then the Acting Junior Warden of the Province, WBro Gerry Hodson not forgetting the Provincial Deputy Grand Director of Ceremonies, WBro David Cowan.
He also brought greetings from the RW PGM Sir David Trippier and VW. Bro. Derek Nelson Thornhill, Dep. PGM both of whom sent their best wishes to everyone and personal congratulations to WBro Nield.
The Provincial Deputy Grand Director of Ceremonies then seated WBro Barry Nield in front of the APGM.
As is customary at a Personal 50th, WBro Welton listed some facts from the year that Barry was born such as King George V being the reigning monarch and Ramsey Mc Donald presiding over a National Coalition Government. The average house price was £590, interesting because two years earlier it was £600, an indication of the effect of the Great Depression that had set in by then. There were several notable events that occurred in 1933, Adolf Hitler and his Nazi Party had taken over Germany and there were some horrible things going on including the construction of the first Concentration Camp at Dachau. It was also the year that the great Wally Hammond set a test match record of 336 runs in a match against New Zealand. Staying with cricket, England won the Ashes that year partly by using the now famous “Bodyline” tactic.
We had the first modern sighting of the Loch Ness Monster, the first synthetic detergent went on sale, branded “Dreft”. The Board Game Monopoly was invented as was polythene. Well-known names born in 1931 included David Bellamy, Michael Caine, Joan Bakewell, Joan Collins, Yoko Ono and the Kray Twins.
1965, the year of Barry’s Initiation, proved to be quite a very momentous year, not just because Barry joined Freemasonry but in that year we had the death and funeral of Sir Winston Churchill, Harold Wilson was P.M. and our current Queen, Elizabeth II, was on the Throne. Edward Heath became Leader of the Conservative Party. The 70 mile an hour speed limit was introduced. Mary Quant introduced the Mini Skirt and Stanley Matthews was knighted for his services to football. The USA first got involved in the Vietnam situation. It was the time of Beatlemania, the emergence of the Rolling Stones, the Who, Cilla Black, Tom Jones and many others but which record was the best seller in 1965…..Ken Dodd’s ‘Tears’!
Having ‘set the scene’ Chris turning to the celebrant continued.
An extract of the minutes was then read by the Lodge Secretary and some interesting points where as follows:
The Regular Meeting of the Lodge of Friendship was held in the Goulburn Lodge Room in the Masonic
WBro Bill Elliot was then invited to pay tribute to his friend Barry and he repeated the amazing contribution that he had made to Freemasonry in general and to the Lodges and Chapters he has been a member of which also includes Mark, RAM and Rose Croix holding most offices and he is currently the Chaplain in this his Mother Lodge and he was WM for a two year period between 1982 and 1983. Bill gave a background to his personal life which after leaving school saw him join his father in business for 3 years before spending 3 years in the RAF. He then opened his own business and married Ann in 1958. They have two children, Sarah and Michael and they have been blessed with 4 grandchildren and whom they are justifiably very proud.
WBro Welton then read out and presented Barry with an illuminated certificate recognising his 50 years in
WBro Welton then performed a very pleasant task in presenting the WM WBro Colin Firth with a Certificate to acknowledge and mark that fact that all of the Brethren of Friendship Lodge hade made a personal contribution to the 2015 Festival. This makes the Lodge one of a select number in the Province to have achieved this impressive and important milestone.
Alms were then collected following which WBro Welton, together with WBro Barry Nield and the Provincial Deputation, then withdrew from the lodge in Masonic order. The Worshipful Master WBro Colin Firth closed the lodge and all the Brethren retired to the social board.
WBro Colin Firth, WM of Lodge of Friendship with WBro Barry Nield and WBro Chris Welton, APGM
The District Delegation with WBro Barry Nield and the Brethren of the Lodge of Friendship
WBro Barry Nield seated alongside WBro Chris Welton, APGM with the WM WBro Colin Firth and the Brethren of the Lodge of Friendship.
WBro Chris Welton pictured with the ‘birthday boy’ WBro Barry Nield and his illuminated certificate.
WBro Chris Welton, APGM presents the certificate to acknowledge that all the brethren of the Lodge of Friendship have made a personal donation to the RMBI 2015 Festival.
Freemasons Hall, Manchester played host to a gathering of widows and their Chaperones for the annual Broken Column event which this year was a luncheon at Freemasons Hall, Manchester.
The ladies were greeted by various District Officers and enjoyed a wine reception before moving through for lunch. They were welcomed by WBro Chris Prax, Chairman, City Sykes District. WBro Roger Bower said Grace and then everyone enjoyed a 3 course meal.
The Loyal Toast was proposed by WBro Roger Bower, Deputy Chairman City Derby District followed by WBro Chris Welton, APGM delivering his first speech at this event since taking over the duties for Manchester. He explained how important this annual gathering was and explained how much hard work went into its organisation. He was sure that all the ladies would have an enjoyable afternoon and in closing he proposed their health.
WBro Chris Prax, who acted as MC then invited Simon Roscoe to take to the stage. He sang a number of songs varying from swing standards by Frank Sinatra to modern classics from Josh Groban which proved to be excellent entertainment and enjoyed by everyone.
WBro David Hudson, Chairman Derby District gave the closing address to the Widows.
All the ladies left the hall with a floral gift and in a happy mood having had a lovely afternoon and looking forward to next year’s event.
WBro Roger Bower Proposed the Loyal Toast
‘Crooner’ Simon Roscoe entertaining the Ladies
WBro Chris Welton delivering his speech
The gifts for the Ladies
On Tuesday April 7th, Bridge St was the venue for a special evening when the Brethren and guests got together at Mellor Lodge 1774 to celebrate the 50 years in Freemasonry of WBro Rodney Evans.
After the lodge had been duly opened by the Worshipful Master, WBro David Green, there was a report, upon which WBro Nigel Pickering, the Provincial Deputy Grand Director of Ceremonies, was admitted. WBro Pickering announced that the Assistant Provincial Grand Master for the Manchester Area, WBro Christopher Welton, PJGD, accompanied by a District Delegation were outside the door of the Lodge and demanded admission.
After welcoming the Assistant Provincial Grand Master the Worshipful Master offered WBro Welton the gavel which he was pleased to accept, he then introduced the Deputation; WBro David Basger APGP, WBro Chris Prax-District Chairman, City Sykes, WBro David Hudson- District Chairman, City Derby, WBro Derek Smith- District Deputy Chairman, City Sykes, WBro Chris Wildman–District Secretary, City Sykes, WBro Paul O’Carroll-Area Almoner, WBro Stephen Pilling-DORA, Bro Matt Phillips—Assist. Communications Officer.
WBro Welton also introduced two Grand Officers, WBro Gerry Young and WBro Len Hayes, being sure not to leave out the Provincial Deputy Grand Director of Ceremonies, WBro Henry ‘Nigel’ Pickering.
He also brought greetings from the RW PGM Sir David Trippier and VWBro. Derek Nelson Thornhill, Dep PGM both of whom sent their best wishes to everyone and personal congratulations to WBro Evans.
The Provincial Deputy Grand Director of Ceremonies was asked to please place WBro Rodney Evans on the Centre.
As is customary at Lodge celebrations, WBro Welton listed some facts from the year that Rodney was born such as King George VI was the reigning monarch and Neville Chamberlain was Prime Minister. A pint of beer cost 5p and the average house price was £600. In sport, Len Hutton scored 364 runs in a Test Match against Australia, a record at the time. In football Manchester City created a first, they were relegated from the first Division after being Champions the year before, much to the dismay of WBro Hayes!!…the first time such a thing had happened. The luxury liner Queen Elizabeth was launched. Overshadowing everything however was Adolf Hitler, voted Man of the Year by Time Magazine. Germany had started to occupy neighboring countries, the persecution of the Jews commenced and Neville Chamberlain signed the Munich Agreement with Hitler.
There were a lot of interesting people born in 1938 as well as Rodney, Arthur Scargill, John Prescott, Ian Brady, Rudolph Nureyev, Diana Rigg, David Dimbleby and Terry Wogan amongst others.
Rodney was initiated into Mellor Lodge on 7th January1964 and this year proved to be quite a momentous year, not just because Rodney joined Freemasonry but in that year Harold Wilson became P.M. and then went on to win an election later that year. On 6th February 1964 the British and French Governments signed a deal to build the Channel Tunnel, it was expected to take 5 years to build!! The British Government also announced plans to build 3 new towns around London one being in the vicinity of a sleepy village called Milton Keynes. The trial of the Great Train Robbers started and during that year 2 children went missing in the Manchester area Keith Bennett and Lesley Ann Downey.
Whilst all this was going on Rodney was quietly going about his Freemasonry and doing sterling service in his Lodge and Chapter. His talents were first recognised in 1990 when he was appointed PProvAGDC, and then in 2002 he was promoted to PProvGSuptWorks and last year to the very high rank of PProvJGW. Honours in the Royal Arch started when he was appointed ProvGStwd in 1996 he was then promoted to PProvGSoj in 1998 and then to PProvGSwdB. another very high Rank.
An extract of the minutes was then read by the Lodge Secretary and the abridged version can be found below:
The Regular Meeting of Mellor Lodge No. 1774 was held in the Lodge Room, Griffin Hotel, Lower Broughton Road, Salford on Tuesday the seventh day of January 1964.
WBro Rodney Evans seated proudly holding his illuminated Certificate flanked by WBro Chris Welton, APGM and WBro David Green, WM
Members of Mellor Lodge and APGM, Chris Welton with the ‘Birthday Boy’
The ‘Three Wise Men’ WBro Chris Welton, APGM; WBro Rodney Evans and WM of Mellor Lodge, WBro David Green.
The Installation meeting at the East Lancashire Provincial Officers Lodge was a very special evening. The Worshipful Master Derek Thornhill DepPGM installed as his successor the RWPGM Sir David Trippier for what will be the Lodge’s Centenary Year.
Sir David Trippier RWPGM, the newly installed WM, with the DepPGM Derek Thornhill and the APGMs for East Lancashire,
left to right: John Farrington; John Pearson; Stephen Blank; Chad Northcott; Christopher Welton; Norman Cope
A challenge was put out to Manchester Lodges & Chapters to compete with each other in entering a Quiz with all the proceeds raised going to the 2015 Festival. David Hudson and Chris Prax the District Chairmen along with John Scott the Festival Chairman were present as well as Derby Deputy District Chairman Roger Bower who had arranged the event and acted as Quiz Master, ably assisted by Elliot Moss.
Taking part were Arkscroll, Maccabee, Volunteer , Mellor, Zion Menorah, Old Mancunians with Mount Sinai & Ark and Menorah Chapter.
The evening was enjoyed by all and a great success with ‘friendly rivalry’ between the participants and the clear winner by some distance was Zion Menorah.
In addition to the fun and ‘Bon Ami’ £750 was raised for the Festival making the evening a double success.
The Victorious Brethren from Zion Menorah
Ark & Menorah Chapter
VWBro Stephen Blank PGSwdB with Bro Russell Rubinstein, WM receiving a gift of a cut glass decanter and glasses to mark his impending retirement as APGM. Stephen was attending his Mother Lodge for the last time in his capacity as an APGM and shortly before he is to be invested as the Deputy Grand Superintendent in the Royal Arch at the meeting of Provincial Grand Chapter on 19th March.
The Decanter & Glasses sitting proudly in Stephen’s home and ready for action!
A grant of £35,000 has recently been awarded to the Rainbow Trust from the Freemasons’ Grand Charity.
Nina Markham-Bew the Regional Fundraising & Development Manager for the Rainbow Trust for the Manchester Area said “We are delighted to have received such an incredible amount from The Freemasons’ Grand Charity and would like to thank them for their generous donation. We offer emotional and practical support to families when they need it most and this money will go towards funding a Family Support Worker in our Manchester team. Support like this will ultimately help us reach our aim that one day every family who needs our help has access to a Rainbow Trust carer.”
WBro Chris Welton presents the Cheque from the Grand Charity for £35,000 to Linda Thomson with Mum Robina holding Zerina in her arms.
WBro Chris Welton, APGM with Robina and Wayne Whyte and their children Zerina (3 yrs old), Hazeeq (11 yrs old) and Aqueel (6 yrs old)
Brother Srinivasan Chellappa who is the current JW of his Lodge Perfect Unanimity visited Caledonian Lodge No.150 recently.
Srini, as he is known, contacted the Province looking for a Lodge to visit whilst in Manchester on business. WBros Len Hayes, District Chairman and a member of the Lodge and WBro David Hudson, District Chairman arranged for Srini to visit Caledonian as it fitted in with his itinerary whilst in Manchester and, as they were having a 3rd Degree ceremony, an ideal opportunity. Srini, a business analyst with the Royal Bank of Scotland, was met by David in the afternoon who gave him a guided tour of some of the highlights of Manchester. They visited St Anne’s Church to see the stained glass window of King Solomon which had been presented by the Province. Srini had a great evening and was made most welcome by the Brethren of the Lodge. Srini is a Manchester United supporter and so he received a combination of congratulations on his taste in football and plenty of ribbing from brethren who prefer the light blue!
Srinivasan is the third generation of his family to be a member of his Lodge. His father Madhavan Chellappa is the Grand Supreme Ruler of the Secret Monitor and Grand Master of the AMD orders in India and he is also a member of the Lodge.
Michael Holland, a Manchester Mason and a member of Alexandra Lodge and Chapter No. 993, is very much involved in Freemasonry in India being the President of the Board of General Purposes for the District of Bombay. His Lodge in India is St. George No. 549 in the DGL of Bombay. He would have been happy to meet Srini but wasn’t available and they have arranged to meet either on the next occasion Srini is in town or in India.
Caledonian Lodge welcomed a visitor from Madras, India, Brother Srinivasan Chellappa who is the current JW of his Lodge Perfect Unanimity No.150. He is pictured next to WBro Fred Walker and also in the picture is WBro Graham Alexandra who acted as WM and WBro Len Hayes.
Fred Walker PProvSGW of Caledonian Lodge No. 204 who has raised over £23,000 for Alzheimer’s Research UK is named a ‘Champion’
Fred Walker decided to start fundraising after losing his wife, Joan, to dementia in 2010 - two weeks before their 46th wedding anniversary.
The Sponsored Climb of Snowdon
The Sponsored Skydive
Fred said: “They phoned out of the blue and said I was getting the title because I’d raised so much money and that I gave a power point presentations about dementia”.
Fred and Joan
WBro Fred Walker at his 50th Celebration in Freemasonry.
At the most recent meeting of Caledonian Lodge, Fred was surprised by WBro Len Hayes, District Chairman and also a member of the Lodge. Secret discussions had taken place and a donation to ARUK was made from Manchester Masons for £200 in recognition of Fred’s sterling efforts for the cause.
Fred Walker receiving a cheque for £200 from WBro Len Hayes from Manchester Masons
Manchester Royal Eye Hospital Charity has received a £125,000 donation from the Freemasons. Made up of a major donation from East Lancashire Freemasons and supplemented by a grant from The Freemasons’ Grand Charity, the funds will be going towards the Hospital’s Eye Bicentenary Charity Appeal to improve treatment, research and care at the Children’s Outpatient Clinic.
The substantial donation will contribute to the purchase of state-of-the-art equipment called a DNA Sequencer. The DNA Sequencer together with sequencing agents will not only be able to improve diagnosis for inherited eye diseases, but will also provide a vital tool to enable researchers to better understand the genetic basis of eye disease.
Currently, a diagnosis for inherited eye diseases can involve repeated and invasive testing. However, using the latest sequencing technology, the cause of the disease in 75% of patients will be detected with a single blood sample. This will mean that the Hospital will be able to treat more eye-patients than ever before while greatly reducing the trauma that they might experience.
DNA sequencing helps to identify new gene variants that cause disease in the eye. It will enable researchers at Manchester Royal Eye Hospital to better understand how such eye problems develop and open up enhanced treatment possibilities.
The donation will also enable the post of ‘Children’s Eye Clinic Liaison Officer’ to be created. The post will provide much needed support to patients and their families at a critical time – when a child is diagnosed with a serious eye condition. From specific counselling, working with social services, schools and the wider community, the Children’s Eye Clinic Liaison Officer will enhance patient care beyond diagnosis.
Manchester Royal Eye Hospital recently marked its bicentenary by raising funds to improve treatment, research and care at the Children’s Outpatient Clinic. The success of the Appeal will enable the Hospital to provide the best possible treatment using the best possible equipment in the best possible environment for children.
Tanya Hamid, Legacies and Trusts Fundraising Manager, said:
“We are incredibly grateful for the generosity of The East Lancashire Freemasons and The Freemasons Grand Charity. The support we have received really will make a significant difference to the lives of children who suffer from a range of eye conditions.
“Being diagnosed with a serious eye condition can be a scary time a child and their family. With the funds raised by the Freemasons we are a step closer to being able to provide the most specialist care and support for those who need it the most.”
Sir David Trippier, Provincial Grand Master for East Lancashire, said:
Left to right: Professor Graeme Black (of MREH), Mr Grahame Elliot (representing the Freemason’s Grand Charity), Sir David Trippier (Provincial Grand Master for East Lancashire),
A large gathering of over 100 Brethren attended the Hosted Meeting in the presence of the RWPGM Sir David Trippier at Freemasons Hall, Manchester.
RW PGM with V WBro Stephen Blank, APGM flanking WM Bro John Bissett with the
The main part of the evening was to be a presentation of ‘Light Blue Entertainment’ which was introduced by the WM John Bissett who started it with his own talking briefly about his masonic family history which is extensive and the reason for his early interest in becoming a Freemason. He explained that his father, WBro Stephen John Bissett PProv SGD, the current Lodge DC, Initiated-Passed and Raised him.
RW PGM Sir David Trippier with the WM Bro John Bissett of Minnehaha Lodge and the Brethren who gave the ‘Light Blue Presentation’
The Senior Warden of Minnehaha Lodge Ed Rowan delivered his presentation.
A special night for ‘Father & Son’ Colin and Scott Bagshaw with the RW PGM as
The next presentation was given by the Junior Warden Luther John Williams
I will be forever grateful for the positive changes it has inspired in me and in my life.”
RW PGM Sir David Trippier congratulates WM Bro John Bissett
The next brother to speak was another Steward-Ionut Vamanu
For many years, he was attracted and impressed by this society, so he decided to go ahead and “knock at its doors and ask for admission.” He made his first step in Freemasonry 6 months ago, in this building, very curious and with a lot of hope. However, he didn’t expected Monday of 28th of April to become a day that he would never forget and his first “left foot step” into the Lodge to be one that would change him into a better person, and that has “opened him a unique path towards light.”
Ionut told the brethren that during his first rituals and meetings, he had tremendous support from “my brothers, and there are no words to describe my gratitude for their help.” They managed to help him understand Freemasonry and motivate him to gain knowledge, grow and respect the true values of this sacred society. He commented “It’s no wonder why this Lodge is 125 years old.”
He concluded by explaining that 6 months ago, the reasons he’d entered Freemasonry were to develop himself, learn and become a better person. Now he can say he has an additional one and he wants to make sure that as long as he is a Freemason, together with his brothers, he will transmit to all new candidates or generations the same passion and values that he felt and received from Minnehaha Lodge this year.
The Brethren then heard from two brethren from other Lodges. Bro George Deer from Ark Scroll had been introduced to Freemasonry through a work connection and thoroughly enjoyed attending meetings and meeting such diverse people. He said that the charitable element was of particular interest to him and he thanked his Lodge Mentor, Laurence Rickless, for the help and guidance he had afforded him since becoming a mason. Bro Domingos Mamede from Virtue Lodge who was a recent initiate said that he felt he had started an “amazing journey” and once that he was sure would help him improve himself in his private and professional life.
The WM John Bissett then presented a cheque for £600 for the RMBI Festival which was gratefully received by the RW PGM.