Monday, 31 October 2016

Richard Ward on his bike...

Only two weeks after becoming a Master Mason in Old Ben lodge (see earlier post) Brother
Richard Ward is organising and taking part in a charity bike ride early in 2017 in aid of the 4Louis charity - a wonderful supporting organisation for parents who have recently lost a very young child.

Richard has cause to be thankful to 4Louis as he and his wife suffered the tragic loss of an unborn child of their own not long ago, while a close friend lost a baby within minutes of its birth. 

Richard intends to cycle from Shrewsbury to Paris, a distance of 430 miles, in just five days. Here is a link to his JustGiving page  so you can keep track of his progress and help him along with a donation! Any money donated will go directly to the charity.

Richard is pictured here with his father, Provincial Grand Chaplain Ted Ward.

News from the South!

Brethren with an interest in Masonry and Geography may be interested in the following teaser - where would you find the oldest lodge in the Southern Hemisphere? In Australia? Kenya?? Argentina, perhaps???

Need a clue? Here is a photo of RWBro James Hodgson, our Past Provincial Grand Master, sitting in the WM's Chair of the Lodge de Goed Hoop! James is clearly enjoying his visit to Cape Town. 

Should you wish to learn more about this amazing place, click here for more of its remarkable history.

Thursday, 27 October 2016

The Corner Stone Club

A “Light Blue” club for Shropshire, to be called “The Shropshire Corner Stone Club”, has been launched successfully and is now in the process of gathering members. Intended
mainly for ‘newer’ Masons and especially younger men, the club will draw together Brethren from across the Province of Shropshire who have yet to reach the Chair. Events will include social and informative events, and the activities of the Club will be driven by its membership.

It is intended that the Club should complement, and not in any way detract from the work of our Lodges. Please encourage all qualified Masons in your Lodge to enquire! Look out for our Facebook page (search "Corner Stone Club).

To register interest, contact Secretary Ryan Preece (

Tuesday, 25 October 2016

Holy Royal Ouch!

It was a great pleasure to be present last night as Pengwerne Chapter 3229 conducted a Double Exaltation for two Brethren of Sabrina Lodge 4158 - Glyn Baldwin and Jonathan Streeter. 

Pleasure was tinged with pain as the Chapter also remembered two distinguished Companions who have recently been called to the Grand Chapter above - EComps Cyril Done and Allan Hollick - and there was more pain (real though bravely borne) as Comp. Streeter recently suffered a parachuting accident in which he broke both legs - but nevertheless knelt, stood and walked through the ceremony without crutches or complaint...

We wish both new Companions many happy years of Royal Arch Masonry.

Sunday, 23 October 2016

Midlands Air Ambulance mark 25-year partnership

The long-established partnership between Freemasonry and the Midlands Air Ambulance movement has been recognised and marked by a Community Partners Award which WBro Dennis Hill collected earlier this year (see earlier post) on behalf of the Provinces of Shropshire, Staffordshire, Worcestershire, Herefordshire and Gloucestershire and the Mark Province of Staffordshire and Shropshire. Freemasons have given over £1.1 million to the charity since its inception.

The trophy which featured that night appeared at the Provincial Grand Lodge of Mark Masons in Staffordshire and Shropshire recently, and will be travelling around the region over the coming twelve months. Helimeds at Cosford and Strensham now sport the Tercentenary square and compasses logo (above right).

Old Ben Raising

Saturday 22nd October saw the Raising of Bro Richard Ward in Old Ben lodge. Richard is son of WBro Rev Edward Ward, Provincial Grand Chaplain, who was present to see the ceremony and to present Richard (as is traditional in his Mother Lodge) with his own Masonic VSL and a 1944 ritual book.

The Raising was witnessed by many Brethren including PrJGW Robin Richardson, who congratulated the WM David Stubbs and the Past Masters who assisted him, especially as the lodge has no L of I and only meets four times a year.

At the Festive Board over £200 was raised in support of the 2019 Festival - the special 'joker' raffle rolling over to next time. Come along to Old Ben at their next meeting and you stand the chance of winning £180!

WM David Stubbs with WBro Edward Ward and his son, new MM Richard.

Friday, 21 October 2016

The Iron Bridge and Old Ben lodges host 'joint' Sunday Lunch

Sunday, 6th November at the Regency Rooms, the Swan at Forton, Eccleshall Road, Forton TF10 8BY, 1230 for 1300h. A joint lodge event with the Worshipful Masters of Old Ben and The Iron Bridge lodges.

Carvery or Nut Roast main courser £9, add a starter or dessert for £4 (menu for these on day - vegetarian and gluten free both available - children under 12 £6.50 meal deal - includes free ice cream! Smart casual dress code.

RSVP by Monday, 31st October to Andy Delamere.

Payment BACS preferred [The Iron Bridge Charity account 16-33-17 a/c 10815859] or by cheque to "The Iron Bridge lodge" c/o Andy Delamere, 13 Wrekin Avenue, NEWPORT, Shrops TF10 7HQ.

Thursday, 20 October 2016

Two CSMs in a week!

At the Installation of the Castle lodge, Bridgnorth on 18th October RWBro Peter Taylor was delighted to award a Certificate of Service to Masonry to WBro/EComp Denis James Mottershead. Denis was Initiated in 1975 and became WM of the lodge in 1982. 

The thoroughly well deserved honour of CSM was also recently awarded to WBro/EComp Mike Barrett of Old Ellesmerian lodge in Ellesmere - and apparently the effect was the same in both cases - it rendered them speechless! 

This alarming effect prompts "Shropshire Blue" to suggest a few other names for consideration...

Tuesday, 18 October 2016

Hawk Group Charity Shoot

Once again this popular event was held at The West Midland Shooting Ground, Hodnet. About 85 shooting guests attended, and we were blessed with good weather.

Light refreshments were served on arrival at 12.30 pm, shooting commenced at 2 pm through to about 4.30 pm, and the day was rounded off with a barbecue, wine and beer.

As usual organiser Frank Jones had sourced good draw prizes from the company's suppliers which believe me were very attractive - as a result we sold draw tickets at £20.00 per strip, giving us a grand total of £1,600.00 cash. 
Generous donations from many local companies helped boost the shoot fund and this raised a further £1,185. 

The High Gun Trophy and the Hawk Charity Shield was won by Mr John Seal from Stoke-on-Trent. 

All cheques were made payable to The Brownlow Lodge 2131 in support of the Shropshire Masonic Festival 2019 Charity Appeal. A cheque for this amount was presented to the Provincial Grand Master by Brownlow Lodge and was very gratefully received!

Monday, 17 October 2016

Special meeting honours three members of Old Ellesmerian Lodge

A very special meeting of Old Ellesmerian Lodge 5368 honoured three members who have given exceptional service to the lodge and to the Province. In the presence of many Provincial officers, RWBro Peter Taylor presented WBro David Bradley with his 50 year certificate and WBro Ted Archer with his 60 year certificate.

Then, in an unexpected move, the Provincial Grand Master awarded WBro Michael Barrett with a Certificate of Service to Masonry. Those of us who know Mike well (but were not able to be present) are not surprised at the honour, for he is a great advocate for Freemasonry, and for OE Lodge's special Workings in particular. We just find it difficult to believe reports that Mike was 'lost for words'...

Sunday, 16 October 2016

Remembrance service at Crewe Street

This year on Sunday, 13th November there will once again be a brief Service of Remembrance at Crewe Street War Memorial in Shrewsbury, 1045 for 1100h.

This event is again organised by WBro David Griffiths, PrGSwdB, and it is anticipated that over 100 people will once more be there to remember those from the local area who gave their lives. 

Refreshments follow for those who attend either this service or the St Chad's service in town, which will as usual include a deputation from the Provincial Grand Lodge of Shropshire.

A date for your diaries!

Brethren of Shropshire, their ladies, families and friends are warmly invited to attend the Provincial Carol Service at St Peter's Church, High Street, Edgmond near Newport TF10 8JW on Sunday, 11th December at 3 p.m..

Refreshments are available after the service, which takes place in one of Shropshire's most beautiful churches under the direction of PrGChaplain Rev. Ted Ward.

Please put the date in your diary now!

Is Simon sitting comfortably?

WBro Simon Clare, WM of The Iron Bridge lodge 9897, has set an excellent example for other Masters to follow. In September Simon cycled from Kent to Shropshire in two days in order to attend - and lead - his lodge's rehearsal for its September meeting. Following a curry celebration, Simon nipped back to London to represent 9897 as a member of the Universities Scheme at the Grand Lodge Quarterly Communications the following day before returning for the Initiation Ceremony the following night!

This extraordinary journey raised £1709.21 for charities including Hope House, the 2019 festival, Little Buddies (children born with Downs Syndrome) and the Cornwallis Charity of the Province of East Kent. any surplus raised will be sent to Dementia Care. 

Simon is pictured by the Howard Memorial  Hall during his cycle ride. 


On Friday 30th September WBro Peter Robinson, WBro Peter Haywood and their good ladies Petrina and  Rona held the first St. Alkmund fishing competition at Ellerdine Lakes, Telford. This event was in aid of the 2019 Festival. This fantastic foursome put a lot of work into organising these events and, along with support from friends, their work towards the Masonic Fishing Charity is wonderful.

The day started with the traditional bacon butty and coffee, and old and new friendships were made. Several of our regular fishermen came and supported the day and of course  they got to take  a fish home. A fantastic £225 was raised towards the Festival.

The two Peters hope to plan another event for next year. Please keep an eye out for details and they hope to attract a few more anglers to attend.

On Monday 10th October Peter, Petrina, Peter and Rona  hosted their thank you day. This is where they give those fishermen who have helped them do such wonderful work in aid of the Masonic Fishing Charity a day’s fishing with lunch at Brades.

On this day they hold a competition for the Robert Ford Trophy. This is in memory of WBro Robert, formerly of Roden Lodge, who owned the pond. Robert’s wife Kath has given the pond to WBro Peter Robinson and the Masonic Fishing Charity on permanent loan, so that the children can continue to benefit.

The winner of the Robert Ford Trophy was a certain WBro Clive Jones of St Mary’s lodge. Clive won the memorial trophy by catching twelve trout of varying sizes. The weather was good, and a wonderful day was had by all.

Thanks must go to Peter, Petrina, Peter and Rona for their constant work towards the masonic fishing charity. I first attended a fishing charity event in 2012 and I have been attending when I can since. It’s a wonderful charity and the pleasure the children get out of the days are just so special.

I urge you to try and attend a Masonic Fishing Charity event and to support it where and when you can. You will be hooked just like I have been!

WBro Clive Jones

Thursday, 13 October 2016

Jan walks 50 miles for TLC

When a seed is sown, you never quite know when and where it may take root. When Bro Kevin Haycocks, Junior Deacon of Column Lodge heard about the work of Teddies for Loving Care at his September lodge meeting, he went home and told his wife Jan about the charity.

Together, they decided to support TLC when Jan took part in this year's Long Mynd Hike. Participants set out to walk 50 miles within 24 hours on a route which takes in eight hilltops, and Jan completed the route in 19 hours and 31 minutes, putting her well up the list of those taking part.

In October, Kevin presented WBro Jeremy Lund with a cheque for £150 towards the charity - a fantastic donation which will provide over 120 teddies to cheer up the same number of children in traumatic Accident and Emergency situations up and down the Province. In return, Jeremy presented Kevin and Jan with TLC badges as a memento and a thank you for their wonderful idea.

Wednesday, 12 October 2016

The Iron Bridge stretches to Shrewsbury!

A great evening saw Brethren from the Iron Bridge lodge 9897 attend a ceremony hosted by Salopian Lodge of Charity 117. Roving cameraman WBro Andy Delamere was there to catch the key moments!

WBro Phil Niblock took time off from climbing impossible peaks and posting the evidence on Facebook (we think you're Photo-shopping these, Phil) and conducted an excellent Third Degree ceremony for Bro Josh Greenroyd from our newest lodge (see below). 9897's WM Simon Clare was also present (not arriving by cycle this time) and a large part of the floor work was undertaken by WBro Melvin Gough of St Oswald lodge 1124, 117's Visiting Officer.

We know that such ceremonies have introduced many Iron Bridge members to Shropshire's wider community (and vice versa) and forged some new friendships. Long may it continue!

Saturday, 8 October 2016

Masonic Golf in 2017

Mike Charles has been in touch with news of dates and venues for the Shropshire Masonic Golf Society in the coming year. Please support these events, most especially any keen golfers who have not yet represented the Province. Shropshire has a fine reputation in its inter-Provincial matches, and this year is also involved in the MFest golf match celebrating 300 years of Freemasonry. July sees a new event in the calendar - so come along, meet old friends and make new ones!

Here then are the dates for your diary - more details will eventually appear on this blog, or you may choose to contact Mike by clicking here.

  • 12th May 2017     Spring Open     Market Drayton Golf Club
  • June                       Match v Herefordshire     details TBA
  • 19th June 2017     MFest Golf Match organised by Mark Ashton of Staffordshire Province                     teams of 12 at Kings Norton Golf Club
  • 18th July 2017      Inaugural triangular challenge v Staffordshire & Cheshire at Hawkstone Park
  • 17th August 2017     Match v Worcestershire     Droitwich Golf Club  (this match will return to 2nd Thursday in August in 2018)
  • 15th September 2017     Autumn Open     Ludlow Golf Club

Friday, 7 October 2016

Idsall collect all three Mauls

At a very special meeting of Idsall Lodge, the members received their third Maul in celebration of the completion of 150% of their 2019 Festival target.

The Provincial Grand Master was very pleased to be present in his own lodge for this auspicious occasion, which also saw the Provincial Sword making a rare excursion into a private lodge - a proud moment for Sword Bearer David Griffiths of Salopian Lodge of Charity 117.

Also present was the Deputy Provincial Grand Master Roger Pemberton, fresh from his Perambulation to Wellington (see earlier Posts on this blog for details).

A great deal of the credit for getting the Idsall Brethren into shape goes to WBro Richard Webster, the Charity Steward, pictured here (second left). Who would bet against Idsall making 300% under Richard's tender ministrations??!!!

Hopefully at this halfway point in the Festival the money will continue to roll in and the target of £1m towards the Grand Charity (now part of the combined Masonic Charitable Foundation) will be achieved with the assistance of the other lodges.

Tuesday, 4 October 2016

Fourth First...

Sabrina Lodge 4158 held its last meeting before next month's Installation as WM Allen Cadman took the Chair to initiate another young Mason - the fourth of this year! 

The team rallied around in the absence of a few stalwarts and a great evening was had by members and Visitors alike. WBro Trevor Pellington was elected Master Elect - and is already swotting up his Second and Third Degree ceremonies for the coming twelve months!

Oswestry Masons on track to support Festival!

Bernard Townson of St Oswald Lodge has been in touch to confirm that the September railway exhibition in Oswestry was a great success, with the many visitors enjoying the event and a total of around £3000 having been raised - £2000 for local charities and ~£1000 towards the 2019 Festival.

Many thanks to all those who put in so much hard work to ensure that things went so well at the exhibition - full steam ahead now for the next one!!

Sunday, 2 October 2016

Sole (?) Night for Fishing Charity

From Doha

Funny how Masonry can creep into your everyday life... Our esteemed Provincial Grand Organist on holiday in Doha...


Saturday, 1 October 2016

Perambulating Shropshire

Enjoying a cool and restoring pint of Guinness is our Deputy PrGM Roger Pemberton with the Walking Maul on the latest Provincial Perambulation along the Shropshire Way towards Old Wrekinian lodge. Roger also seems to have enjoyed the last of the summer weather!

Please keep an eye on the blog and Provincial website for further details of walks planned for the autumn and 2017! The important links to the website pages are available below.

Who can take part? The more the merrier!! It would be especially good if the lodges at either end of each walk could be represented among the walkers.

If you aren't up to the walk, why not join the walkers for a drink/meal en route - or the lodge meeting which follows closely on the arrival of the Maul.

For the Perambulations 2016 webpage click here : for the printable version of the plan click here: for the downloadable sponsorship form click here