Tuesday, 5 December 2017

MCF awards ceremony at Prestfelde School

At a gala evening on December 2nd, over £50,000 and the MCF trophy was awarded to four local charities by the Provincial Grand Master, Peter Taylor. The spread of monies awarded was decided after an online vote in which 90% of those involved were non-Masons. The £50,000 was part pof £3m given by the MCF nationwide in celebration of the Tercentenary.

Tuesday, 24 October 2017

Regalia Shop

An efficient regalia shop with discounts available (average 20%) has been established following talks between John Weaver and Crest Regalia. Their prices are already very competitive, and any commission received will go to the 2019 Festival.

Please contact John for details.

Wednesday, 18 October 2017

The next Roger de Courcey???

Pearl of Africa at the Buttermarket

The "Pearl of Africa" children's choir is on tour from Uganda, and together with the Shrewsbury Brass Band promise to provide an unforgettable evening of musical entertainment in Shrewsbury's Buttermarket on 28th October. Tickets are £11 which includes a pulled pork bap or vegetarian alternative. 

Tickets from www.wegottickets.com or 01743 281712 or from Buttermarket or Peach Tree Restaurant. If you wish for the vegetarian option, please order that when you book tickets.   

Paul Luff, WM 117

Provincial Perambulators

The Fearless Famous Five set out from Crewe Street at 8am on Thursday 12th of October to walk to Ellesmere College to honour the Old Ellesmerian Lodge which is holding its Installation meeting on the 21st (see Diary below!!).

This is the first of this season’s Provincial Perambulations and holding the Walking Maul is Bro Nick Fox of Old Ellesmerian Lodge. The other walkers were, The Deputy Provincial Grand Master, VWBro Roger Pemberton, WBro Chris Parkin of St Mary’s Lodge; the Provincial Grand Charity Steward, WBro Simon Aucott and the Walksmeister himself, WBro Roger Michell, Sabrina Lodge who in the above photograph prefers to be known as “The Shadow”.

Hopefully Old Ellesmerian will welcome us at their meeting on the 21st as we travel the last few steps into their lodge room.

Remembrance Services

from the Provincial Grand Secretary

Dear all The Mayor of Shrewsbury, Councillor Jane Mackenzie,
has invited the RW PGM to attend the Remembrance Day Sunday Service. The RW PGM will be escorted by his Standard Bearers and accompanied by his Provincial Officers / Masters of Lodges or their representative.  He will wear his chain of Office. No other regalia will be worn. Dress will be smart Masonic or dark suit and Provincial tie. The event commences at Shrewsbury Castle, on the above date at 8.15 am and the procession will accompany the Mayor to St. Chad’s Church for Remembrance Sunday Service at 9.45 am. The Regimental Museum at the Castle will be open from 8.00 am and you are most welcome to view the exhibits prior to lining up for the procession.  The Civic procession will leave the Castle at 9.00 am.  Those not taking part in the procession should proceed directly to the Church and please be seated by 9.20 am. The Service will be followed by a wreath-laying ceremony at the War Memorial in The Quarry and the RW PGM will lay a wreath on behalf of the Province. The Last Post will afterwards be sounded.  The units of HM Forces and Service organisations will then march past the saluting base on St. Chad’s Terrace.  There will not be a return procession to the Castle. It is intended that after this event, refreshments will be taken at Crewe Street where there is also a Remembrance Day Service at the War Memorial (NB for this event, please be at Crewe Street for 1045).

Fishy goings-on at Whitchurch

On Saturday 7th October the Masonic Fishing Charity, along with St Alkmund Lodge 2311 and Roden Lodge 6243 had a stand at the Whitchurch Blackberry Fair. We had a very successful day, as the Fishing Charity had made up a very large hamper with a "Fishy Theme".

The sale of draw tickets along with some generous donations made a total of £363. We also had a lot of interest in Freemasonry and we were able to explain the charities that Freemasons support.

Our grateful thanks to WBro John Adam who represented St Alkmund Lodge and also Roden Lodge, to Mrs Petrina Robinson and Mrs Rona Hayward for helping to organise the day and make up the hamper, to WBro Peter Robinson organiser, and Bro Ian Halliwell for the fly-tying display and WBro Jim Tucker all of whom helped to put the stand together.

Also on Friday 13th October we held an "Around Britain Quiz" for the funds of the Masonic Fishing Charity at the St Alkmund Masonic rooms. 57 friends and brethren supported the evening and helped raise a total of £503.59. 

Everyone had a great time. Food was provided and put together by Petrina and Rona, and Bro Jim Downer was the Quiz Master. Our thanks to Jade Downer for her help, and all others who helped with the washing up afterwards. 
WBro Peter Robinson was the compere for the evening and Rona had set the questions for the quiz.

Our grateful thanks to the winning team, WBro John and Ros Adam for donating the cash prize to the charity.

Once again thanks to everyone who helped and for all who supported the evening.

Saturday, 7 October 2017

Two 50 year certificates!

I was pleased to  witness a unique  presentation of not only one 50 year certificate, but a second 50 year certificate from the Scottish Constitution.

The evening was a wonderful meeting with Rt W Bro James McAllister Hodgson presenting the certificates to WBro David Stewart Gordon (Stewart) who was in full Scottish Regalia.

The Lodge of the Marches joined in to wish Stewart many more happy years in Masonry, very mindful that he travels from Seven Oaks for the meetings.

WBro Colin Edwards

Tuesday, 3 October 2017

The Tercentenary Celebration Choral Evensong in pictures

The Shropshire celebration of Choral Evensong to commemorate the Tercentenary of the Grand Lodge of England took place in Shrewsbury Abbey on Sunday, 1st October, 2017 in the presence of the RW Provincial Grand Master Peter Allan Taylor, his Deputy Roger Brentnall Pemberton and many Distinguished Guests including the Grand Chaplain, Rev Canon Michael Wilson.

The organ was played by WBro Jeremy Lund.

A Procession of Banners from the Lodges of the Province of Shropshire began proceedings with a pageant of colour and ceremony, with the Provincial Sword, Banner and Standard holding pride of place before the High Altar.

Provincial Grand Chaplain WBro Phil Niblock led the service.

Lessons were read by the Deputy and the Provincial Grand Master. Sitting with the Pr G Chaplain is the Vicar of Shrewsbury Abbey, Rev Paul Firmin.

A most distinguished array of guests took over the South side of the Choir for the afternoon.

The Sermon was preached by the Grand Chaplain, W Bro the Rev. Canon  Michael Wilson (below). At the end of the service, all agreed that it had been a great success and a fitting and memorable way tio mark 300 years of Freemasonry under the  English Grand Lodge.

pictures: our particular thanks to Geoff Glover, photographer for the day, from whose many images of the day we have chosen just a few.

Sunday, 1 October 2017

1st October celebrations

With the music still ringing in our ears from the magnificent Abbey organ at our Tercentenary celebration, here are the first rushes of pictures from the day, which was enjoyed by around 300 Masons, their wives, partners and families.

The day began with an ascent of Lord Hill's Column at the top of Abbey Foregate by some 25 intrepid climbers, who were given a short digest of the amazing history of this monument, erected to celebrate Viscount Rowland Hill, Wellington's second-in-command through the Peninsular campaign. 

The foundation stone was laid with Masonic ceremony on St John the Evangelist's Day, 27th December 2014, by members of Salopian Lodge 262 who included at that time the architect and Hill's nephew. The column, the tallest Doric column in the UK (and at one time in the world), measures 133.5 feet, and the statue (of Coade stone) stands 17 feet high. 

After a wonderful meal at the Lord Hill hotel nearby, a Choral Evensong service in Shrewsbury Abbey began with a Procession of the banners of the Shropshire lodges. 

Many Brethren were in regalia for the service, another novelty which lent the occasion a sense of pageantry and colour. The service included a sermon by the Rev Canon Michael Wilson, Grand Chaplain.

Roden's Antipodean visitor

Roden Lodge enjoyed a marvellous night recently with the visit to the lodge of WBro David Stenning, Deputy District Grand Master for New Zealand (pictured second left, next to VWBro Roger Pemberton). 

Midlands Air Ambulance receives MFest boost

Following the success of MFest300, the four Provincial Grand Masters involved joined with John Trainor, MFest300 Chairman, and representatives of the Midlands Air Ambulance at their Strensham base to present a cheque for £6726, being the surplus remaining from the event.

Heaven on Earth

South Shropshire Masonic Fellowship

The Ragleth
at Little Stretton

Thursday October 19th    

12.00 for 1.00 pm.
Sonja Mason
will give a talk entitled

Heaven on Earth
Please reply to: MelMcFarland

Sunday, 24 September 2017

Combat Stress receive generous cheque

from Nick Barrett:

Brethren, please take a minute to read so you can see where your kind donations will be applied:

Here is a photo taken when I handed over the cheque for £500 to Combat Stress in Newport on behalf of St Milburga Lodge in September.

I would be grateful if you could pass on my thanks and that of Combat Stress Newport for the generous support from our brethren.

Combat Stress Newport is totally funded through charitable donations and support through our NHS and without this support our military heroes who have given so much at such a huge cost to themselves would be left to deal with the psychological stress by themselves. Its not only those who have served but the families attached to them who have to try to cope with post traumatic stress after returning from combat zones and scenes of devastation.

 Combat Stress say:

For almost a century, we’ve helped former servicemen and women deal with issues like trauma, anxiety, depression and post-traumatic stress disorder. Today, we provide support to veterans from every service and every conflict. On the phone and online. In the community and at our treatment centres.

We’re on a mission to raise awareness that invisible injuries can be just as hard to cope with as physical ones. So when a veteran is having a tough time, we’re there to help tackle the past and to help them take on the future.

Just to remind the Brethren that this donation was part of collection over 2016 through our social events and once again I'd like to thank all those who donated and assisted in the running of those social events that proved so successful in getting us all together as well as raising all the funds.
Many thanks from Kristy and myself for the support.

Kind regards


Caer Bears?

Well done to Caer Caradoc lodge, who raised £120 by raffle towards the excellent Teddies for Loving Care charity. The generosity of a member saw the total doubled and a cheque for £240 has been sent to Allen Cadman and his cuddly team. 

The charity, which supplies teddy bears to children in A&E and other trauma units throughout most of the country, requires about £5,000 a year in Shropshire to meet its costs - if each lodge could match Caer Caradoc's efforts, the fine work of TLC would be guaranteed in Shropshire for years to come.

Provincial Walkers prepare!

Forgive the pun but the Provincial Walks Programme continues apace and in charge will be our very own Champion Race Walker, WBro Roger Michell (Sabrina Lodge No 4158).

On 12th October there will be a walk from Freemasons’ Hall, Crewe Street Shrewsbury to
Ellesmere College in honour of The Old Ellesmerian Lodge which will be meeting on Saturday 21st October. The walk will leave Shrewsbury at 8.00 am and will follow footpaths and country lanes. The pace will be steady (3 miles per hour), so no racing!  If you would like to join the Deputy Provincial Grand Master and WBro Roger Michell on that day please send Roger Michell an e-mail on roger.michell@tps-cs.co.uk . If you would like to attend the OE meeting please contact the Secretary, on oe5368@the-sycamores.com.

A second walk, a little shorter [of about 6 inches... (Ed)], will take place on 16th November,
this time from Ellesmere to Oswestry to honour Fitz Alan Lodge No 1432. This walk is timed to arrive at the Oswestry Masonic Hall a couple of hours before the start of the Fitz Alan Installation Ceremony.  (There will be time to change and  arrangements might be made for a shower).  Once again, if you are interested in this walk which might take in one or two canal tow paths, please contact Roger Michell at the above e mail address. If you are interested in attending the Installation meeting please contact ebooth1432@gmail.com.

It is hoped that the two lodges might arrange to greet the walkers and possibly to arrange for  some informal sponsorship on the evening to go towards the 2019 Festival Appeal.  All sponsorship will be in the name of the Lodge and will go towards the Lodges’ targets.

Roger Pemberton
Deputy Provincial Grand Master

Chair 2019 Festival Appeal

Sunday, 17 September 2017

Forester Lodge Ladies Night

Forester Lodge Ladies' Night will be on Saturday, 18th November 1930h at the White House Hotel, Wellington. 

Please come and support WBro Bill Norton as part of his great year in the Chair. For menu details and bookings, please contact Russell Brooks  07973 506026

Pengwerne Ladies rockin' the night away

Brethren all,
It is both a great pleasure and an honour for me (and for the long serving and suffering present Mrs Baugh) to be inviting you all, your partners, friends and family to join together with us in celebrating the Pengwerne Lodge Ladies Night 2017 on Saturday, 18th November.

This year’s event is at Shrewsbury Town Football Club. Please feel free to invite other Masons or friends and their partners to join you on your tables. Many Masons (me included) had their first ‘Masonic experience’ enjoying our company on Ladies Night, seeing the social side of Freemasonry and in this our 300th Anniversary Year, we should be proud to share and celebrate that with them.

We will celebrate in style too, as usual, it is a black tie or formal dress event; with complimentary drinks and canapes on arrival, an impressive three course dinner menu, specially created for us by the chef and hospitality team at STFC, optional cheese boards can be ordered too and a hand - picked selection of wines to accompany your food will be available by the bottle. 

We will be entertained by the superb ‘Dirty Rockin’ Scoundrels’, in my opinion, the best Rock’n’Roll party band I have seen in years and sure to end the evening in fine style. Please feel free to watch their preview video on Youtube!

Let’s make it a night to remember.          W.Bro Simon BaughPengwerne Lodge 3229

TIBL are at it again!

Welcome to Jason McComb (centre) who last night became the 10th candidate to be initiated into The Iron Bridge Lodge, No. 9897 since our consecration less than three years ago. He is pictured with his proposer Bro. Steve Venezia (right) and W. Bro Jon Hughes who was the WM for the evening, as VW Bro Roger Pemberton was otherwise engaged at Grand Lodge.

This initiation would not have happened without the help and support of St. Alkmund Lodge, no. 2311 who after interviewing Jason thought he was more suited to our lodge due to the location of his home address being over an hour away from Whitchurch. It was not an easy decision to turn him away especially when lodges are always looking for good candidates!

We also welcomed Bro. James Buckley (who has taken on the mantle of our Organist) after joining us from Gatwick Lodge, no. 2502 after moving to Telford a few years ago. He played the organ and trumpet at our meeting for the first time and is pictured with singers W. Bro Brian Goodwin and Bro. Steve Venezia.

Finally during the evening two more candidates were proposed for 2018.      

WBro Andy Delamere

St Alkmunds Lodge - dates for your diary

Sat 7th October. St. Alkmund and Roden Lodges and the Masonic Fishing Charity are attending the Blackberry Fair in Whitchurch. This is an annual event which promotes Freemasonry and the Fishing Charity in the community. Come and see our fly tying demonstration bring the children to have a go at hook a duck.
Its a great day out and its all free.

Friday 13th October. The   Masonic Fishing Charity are holding a Pate, Pie and Pickles  night with quiz at the North Shropshire Masonic Rooms. Tickets are £10.00 doors open 7.00pm for 7.30 start.  Cash prize. All welcome.

Friday 1st December. St. Alkmunds Ladies Committee are holding their annual Christmas social at the North Shropshire Masonic Rooms.Tickets to include supper and mince pies, quiz and carols around the tree
with David Williams. Tickets £10.00 doors open 7.00pm for 7.30pm.All profits going to the 2019 festival.Come and get into the Christmas spirit.

Tickets from Petrina Robinson 01948 780218.

Sunday, 10 September 2017

Paul Brennan at the South Shropshire Fellowship

The Ragleth
 At Little Stretton
 Thursday September 21st   
 12.00 for 1.00 pm.
 Prizes welcome for the Draw

Paul Brennan
Will give a talk entitled
 The Mysterious Death of
 Sgt. Leonard Gaffee RAF(VR).

Please reply to:

Mr. Mel McFarland, Dale House, Longville, Much Wenlock, Shropshire TF13 6DS

Telephone  01694 771 288
 Mobile 07887  533 392

E Mail  mel@mcfarlandgroup.co.uk

by the Monday before the lunch with your choice of menu

Teme and Arrow Lodges Ladies' Festival

Teme & Arrow Lodge Ladies Festival
                          W.Bro Alan & Mrs. Julie Watson and W.Bro Terence & Mrs. Emma Payen
extend a cordial invitation for you and your lady to join them as guests of the Lodge and attend the joint
                Ladies Festival
to be held at the Burton Hotel, Kington
on Saturday 21st October 2017
7.00pm for 7.30pm
Choice of Menu

To accept your invitation and for any additional place(s) please contact David Hedley.
Please book by the 9th October to assist with the arrangements.

Lot Eight!

At the Grand Promise Auction held at The Wynnstay Hotel on Friday 1st July 2016, WBro. John Williamson and his wife Ann outbid the attendees to take a trip on a narrowboat. Yesterday, Sunday 3rd of September, John and Ann met with John and Kaye Weaver on their narrowboat, “Nebuchadnezzar”: it was an early morning start meeting up at the marina in Audlem at 08.00.

After preparing the boat for its voyage, they cast off at 08.30, their destination The Olde Bar
Bridge Inn at Bar Bridge just north of Nantwich, a distance of 7 miles. With a total of two locks to navigate, and the trip taking an elevated journey through Nantwich Town and over a short cast iron Aqueduct (not quite the same as the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct in North Wales, but still constructed by the Great Thomas Telford, as was the whole of the Shropshire Union Canal) the stretch of water to be navigated today is known as “Weaver Way” (nothing to do with the boat owners).

After turning the boat around, they moored up outside the pub at 12.00, where they enjoyed a Sunday Lunch of Roast Beef and a modicum of libation, and a great deal of light heated banter.

All the crew refreshed, they cast off for the homeward journey at 14.00, this time with John and Ann taking turns to pilot the boat,(under a little supervision). Both pilots handled the boat with a deal of expertise, considering this was their first time on a narrowboat, and in challenging weather conditions with quite strong cross winds; no significant episodes were reported.

We returned to Overwater Marina at 17.15 to moor up and put the boat back to bed, ready for its next voyage. A great time had by all!

John Weaver

Wednesday, 6 September 2017

The results are in!

£3 million has been given to a whole range of community charities the length and breadth of England and Wales as part of our Tercentenary celebrations. Click here to see the full range of results. 

The different grants were assessed by size of Province, and then by dividing each Province's 'pot' according to the number of online votes made by members of the public - another 'first' for Freemasonry.

In Shropshire, the Shropshire Rural Communities Charity has been awarded £25,000, the Perry Group Riding for the Disabled £15,000, the Move On Club £6,000 and Shropshire MIND £4,000. Thank you for all your votes, and be assured that each of these four grants will make a very real difference to the four charities concerned.

Wednesday, 30 August 2017