Tuesday, 29 March 2016

Currying favoured!

The management and staff of the Oruna Indian Restaurant in Market Drayton have given tremendous support to charities over the years and recently made a truly remarkable contribution to assist St Mary's Lodge 8373 raise the magnificent sum of £1000. This money will be given to the Shropshire 2019 Festival Appeal in support of the Freemasons' Grand Charity who fund a wide range of causes around the country including medical research, the hospice movement and air ambulance trusts.

The recent event was organised by W.Bro Clive Jones (pictured, below rightand the St David's Day event, attended by 50 people - many in appropriate Welsh dress - was a truly enjoyable celebration for all. Those attending enjoyed a sumptuous three-course Indian meal served up by the personable and attentive staff. The raffle was extremely well supported with a huge range of prizes, and a bottle of Penderryn whisky was also auctioned.

The presentation of a certificate from the Grand Charity in recognition of the work of the restaurant took place on Easter Monday and the occasion was attended by W.Bro Chris Parkin, Worshipful Master of St Mary’s Lodge, W.Bro Clive Jones, Junior Warden & Almoner and W.Bro Peter Rothwell OBE, the Charity Steward. 

Worshipful Master Chris Parkin commented, "The sum raised was magnificent and grateful thanks are due to all those who supported the event. This could not have been achieved though without a tremendous effort by W.Bro Clive and his family in organising it and the unstinting support and generosity of all at the Oruna Restaurant".

[thanks to WM Chris Parkin for writing this article]

Provincial Meetings this Saturday

Our congratulations to all those being honoured with promotions and especially first appointments at the Shropshire Provincial Convocation and Provincial Grand Lodge in Newport on Saturday.

We look forward to welcoming our guests from other Provinces, but respectfully remind all Brethren that we have been asked by our hosts not to mention the name of the venue of the meeting (or show pictures of it) in any online posting, tweet or the like.

A great day is assured - and especially a superb (and locally sourced) lunch!

Saturday, 26 March 2016

Audley Court making an Entrance!!

Brethren may very well remember the grant given by the Shropshire Masonic Charitable Association to Combat Stress in June, 2015. The SMCA donated £1000 to the charity, which has three residential centres, one in Ayrshire, one in Surrey and one at Newport in Shropshire. These centres allow Veterans with health problems to receive care in a warm and understanding environment - some for just a day or two, some for several weeks. 

The Combat Stress centre in Shropshire was able to announce then that the intention was to spend the money on making much-needed improvements at Audley Court (see plans above), and these improvements are now going ahead - as the picture (right) clearly shows! When completed, the entrance area should be much very much better  - and we look forward to supporting this amazing charity again in the future!

Wednesday, 23 March 2016

50 year certificate for Ian Gillogaley

Bro Ian Gillogaley of Salopian Lodge of Charity 117 receives a certificate recognising 50 years in Masonry from WBro Ron Gee tonight. Ian joined the Craft in Greenock, under the Scottish Constitution, and his Mother Lodge sent a message of support which was read to him and presented along with the certificate.

Round Table lodge Installation

New Worshipful Master of Round Table lodge WBro Shaun Willocks, who greatly enjoyed the experience! The lodge gave generous donations of £1000 to the 2019 Grand Charity Festival and £150 to Teddies for Loving Care. The leprechaun - though expected - did not put in an appearance.

Sunday, 20 March 2016

Knock, knock...

Beautiful set of gavels made for Idsall lodge by WBro Winston Cree. Circumstances dictate that they will first be used at PGL on 2nd April, which is being held this year under the banner of our newest lodge, The Iron Bridge lodge 9897, which uses Idsall's equipment!

Sunday, 13 March 2016

Teddies in Star and Chronicle

Will Heyward, son of WBro David of Column and Caer Caradoc lodges, pictured in Shropshire Star yesterday. Will had his head shaved to raise money for TLC and Children in Need. What a star!!!

Friday, 11 March 2016

Clive walks to Market Drayton

If, like me, your printed copy of "Freemasonry Today" dropped through the letter-box today, you may already have noticed that, in addition to the excellent article about The Iron Bridge Lodge ("Bridging the Gap") on page 50 - already covered in "Shropshire Blue" earlier in the week - Shropshire is also mentioned on page 16!

The occasion was the walk from Whitchurch to Market Drayton in which WBro Clive Jones of St Mary's Lodge walked 11 miles to help raise the profile of the Provincial Perambulations and promote the 2019 Festival.

Clive is here pictured with WBro Kim March: the Perambulations are to continue (with a walk to UGLE in London in 2019) - enquiries regarding these future walks should be addressed to WBro Roger Michell or by clicking here.

Top Hatt!

At a meeting of Fitz Alan Chapter last night, VWBro/MEGS Peter Allan Taylor was delighted to present a Certificate of Service to Masonry to WBro/EComp Bob Hatt - a well merited and very popular award.

Bob has been well known in the Province for a long time for his educational work on behalf of Royal Arch Masonry - and his peripatetic style of delivery!!


Wednesday, 9 March 2016

Half and half

Half is a quantity that can be viewed in different ways, depending on your point of view. It is most encouraging that in its first three weeks, "Shropshire Blue" has been viewed by so many people - well over 2000 page views - but also that it has included news from or affecting half of its 34 lodges - and several Chapters too!

So come on, you other half - send your news and pictures - and advertisements for forthcoming events - to me at jklund@live.co.uk.

Tuesday, 8 March 2016

Ladies Evening in Shrewsbury next October

WBro Allen Cadman, WM of Sabrina Lodge 4158 and his Lady Cilla invite you to a very special Ladies Evening at the Lord Hill Hotel on Saturday, 22nd October, 2016.

You will be received from 6.15 p.m. with a Bucks Fizz or soft drink on arrival, then be treated to a special three course meal with coffee and mints. With gifts for the Ladies, charity events and fun as well as live music from the Scherzando String Quartet and dancing to a DJ, the evening is bound to live long in the memory!

Funds raised from the Ladies Evening will go to the 2019 Grand Charity Festival. Tickets £40.

Tickets are available by contacting Junior Warden Bro James Evans or Bro Mike Avery

A Grand Day Out!!!

The Provincial Grand Master Peter Allan Taylor is delighted to announce that the following members of the Province of Shropshire are to be honoured with Grand Rank this April:

Simon Edward Medland QC        Old Wrekinian Lodge 5481         AGReg
Nigel William Scobie Hester       Albric Festival Lodge 9576         PAGDC
Dennis John Hill                           Cleobury Lodge 6972                   PAGDC
Alan William Sykes                       West Mercia Lodge 9719             PAGDC
Dr Andrew Russell Green            The Iron Bridge Lodge 9897      PGStB

We hope all enjoy a Grand Day Out!!!

Shropshire in Freemasonry Today magazine again!

Shropshire is once again high-profile in the Masonic news, with another article in the printed version of "Freemasonry Today" magazine. 

To read the article, click here and go to page 50 to read about The Iron Bridge lodge 9897, our 34th Shropshire lodge, barely a year old but already very much in the news. This Universities Scheme lodge, the first to be Consecrated as part of the Scheme, is setting a very upbeat tone with a Double and then a Triple Initiation under its belt already.

For more about The Iron Bridge lodge, visit www.theironbridgelodge.co.uk or follow their Twitter feed @ironbridge9897.

Sunday, 6 March 2016

Mum's the Word!!

An excellent Mothers' Day lunch at the Buckatree Hotel outside Wellington was organised on behalf of The Iron Bridge lodge 9897 by WBro Paul Brennan, and a fine meal was enjoyed by all. A feature of the day was a quiz provided by Bro Stewart Braddock - everyone seemed very knowledgeable about trees for some reason - and the success of the event was not just measured by the smiles on so many faces, but by the decision that it will definitely be repeated in 2017 (make a note now!) and by the news that £200 has been raised for the 2019 Festival...

Saturday, 5 March 2016

Chapter banners

Shropshire Installed First Principals' Chapter 6262 was pleased to hear again from returning speaker E Comp Jeremy Mallin, a Worcestershire Grand Officer, who spoke to the many assembled Royal Arch Masons about the origins and symbolism of the four principal banners which adorn every Chapter. A knowledgeable and witty speaker, E Comp Mallin entertained the Companions very well, but the loudest applause of the day was reserved for the announcement of Grand Lodge honours - in this case to E Comp Alan Sykes. Other Companions were rewarded for their work in other Provinces and charitable arms of the Institution, including E Comp Dennis Hill, who is also working hard in the Craft as SMCA Treasurer - a key figure also in the 2019 Festival Committee. Our congratulations to them all - and our thanks again to our special Visitor, E Comp Mallin.

Welsh Curry???

On Tuesday 01st March, Worshipful Master WBro Chris Parkin and the Brethren of St Mary’s Lodge 8373 hosted a St David’s Day Charity Curry Night in aid of the 2019 Festival. Organised by W.Bro Clive Jones, the evening had a Welsh theme and was a fantastic success. It was at WBro Clive’s request that all wore something Welsh and join in the fun of the evening.

There were people wearing sheep costumes, flags, daffodils and of course a St David’s day celebration wouldn’t be complete without the Dragon! A prize for the best-dressed diner was donated by the Worshipful Master
and won by Mrs Sue Walker, who dressed as a rugby player -Welsh of course.

A fantastic meal was had and the noise levels were fabulous, with every type of music from Welsh male voice choirs to Dame Shirley Bassey, Tom Jones and the Stereophonics being played to make it a wonderful occasion. Lots of fun, including a spot auction for a bottle of Penderyn Welsh single malt and a raffle were had, raising a fantastic sum of £1,000 towards the Festival.

Once again it was a fantastic night and if you have never been to a St Mary’s Curry night, the question is why not? The whole event was  enjoyed by all. Our thanks go to the Oruna Cuisine for hosting us, and contributing to what was a wonderful and memorable evening.
Thanks to WBro Clive Jones for the article - happily (from my point of view) written in English!!

Friday, 4 March 2016

Communications Officer for Longmynd Lodge

Longmynd Lodge 4877 has appointed a Communications Officer to address long term issues of regenerating the lodge, one of the two Church Stretton lodges. W Bro Chris Morris was for a number of years the editor of Shropshire's Newsletter, so he is not without experience of communicating with local Masons!
Longmynd lodge has seen membership fluctuate over recent years, but it is now in need of a real boost - and that is what Chris intends to inspire his members towards. With the lodge Centenary just 10 years away, his target is to reach a membership of 50 by 2026. "This is do-able - it's just over two additional members a year. Joining members are all very well - but it is Initiates who will secure the long-term future of the lodge. They need to be good Candidates - men of the right calibre."
Ideas include a mix of tried and tested initiatives such as articles in the Stretton press, posters in local venues and social events. Chris is also looking into other ideas, including social media. A Facebook page www.facebook.com/TheLongmyndLodge/ is now an important way for people to keep in contact. "In due course we aim to link with many similar organisations and lodges across South Shropshire. We need to reach out to the community to be relevant to it."
Good luck to Chris - give him your support, Brethren!!

MFest300 site goes live

MFest300 is a Family Fun event at Weston Park, Weston-under-Lizard, on 24th to 25th June, 2017 - as our four Provinces gather to celebrate the 300th anniversary of the United Grand Lodge of England. The two days will see Weston Park's spacious grounds turned over to MFest300 and activities and events are planned for all ages.
We are pleased to announce the opening of a dedicated website www.mfest300.org for the event, with plenty of useful information, as well as online ticketing. It is possible to buy Early Bird tickets from the site at just £10 per person. You can also pre-order picnic hampers and link to MFest's Facebook page!
Please put this date firmly in your diaries - ladies, friends and their families are of course especially welcome too!