Sunday, 26 March 2017

The Wrekin Lodge no. 2883

Many of you will know of The Wrekin Lodge No 2883 which meets at Great Queen Street, and some of you will have been fortunate to have visited. This year over thirty Shropshire Masons travelled to London to celebrate with them the Installation of their new Master, WBro David Johnson and to enjoy a splendid Festive Board at The Imperial Hotel, Russell Square. Don’t worry if you missed it, there’s always next year.

The Wrekin Lodge was consecrated in 1902 as a home for Shropshire Masons who lived or worked in London. The Lodge has always enjoyed strong ties with the Province of Shropshire, not least because many of its members had family connections with the county. Some of our Shropshire domiciled Masons have in the past joined the Wrekin Lodge; our present Provincial Grand Master, Past Provincial Grand Master and current Deputy Grand Superintendent are all Honorary Members.

Today the Wrekin Lodge is experiencing difficulty in finding new members principally because its current membership is spread far and wide across the country.  I wonder if there are any Shropshire Masons who live in London or who travel to London regularly for work or leisure and who might be interested in visiting the Wrekin Lodge? They are sure to receive a warm welcome.

The Wrekin Lodge meets four times a year in February, April, September and November. If you are interested, please contact the Secretary, WBro Kelvin Stead.

Roger Pemberton

Deputy Provincial Grand Master

Message from the Masonic Charitable Foundation

Air Ambulance Grants 2017

I am delighted to inform you that the Charity Grants Committee of the Masonic Charitable Foundation has approved a total of £192,000 for Air Ambulances across England and Wales.  Since 2007, and including this year’s grant, £2.1m has been donated to Air Ambulances and equivalent rescue services in England and Wales. 

The Midlands Air Ambulance will receive a grant of £4,000 from the Masonic Charitable Foundation on behalf of the Province of Shropshire. And there's more good news!

I am pleased to inform you that the Charity Grants Committee has approved grants 2 charities based within the Province of Shropshire. These charities are:

The Sequal Trust - £5,000 towards general charitable purposes. The Sequal Trust provides communication aids to people with speech, movement or severe learning disabilities.

Omega Care for Life - £2,400 towards general charitable purposes. Omega Care for Life provides support to frail elderly people, carers and the bereaved, especially the socially isolated.

St Alkmund's Lodge hit 100%!

On the 8th March 2017  the WM Stephen Casbolt of St Alkmund Lodge no. 2311 was presented with the Senior Warden's Gavel by DPrGM VWBro Roger Pemberton.

This was in recognition of reaching 100% of their 2019 Festival target.

WBro Peter Robinson the Lodge Charity Steward has done a great job in
getting the Lodge to its target! 
Also pictured is the SW Bro Peter Hayward.

Many thanks also to the St Alkmund Lodge Ladies Committee for all their hard
work over the past years for the fund raising events. 


On Friday 24th February the Ladies Committee of St Alkmund Lodge No
2311 held a fund raising Bingo Night for the festival funds.

It was a great night, and the main organisers Mrs Linda Prince and Mrs Lynn Cotton did a fantastic job in getting so many prizes.

The Ladies would like to thank everyone who came along to support and also those who gave draw prizes.

The final amount raised was £414.00. Many thanks to all the Ladies who are on the Committee for all the fund raising efforts they have made for the Festival.

St Milburga LofI Festival

Wednesday, 5th April at Masonic Hall, Constitution Hill, Wellington, 1800h. 

St Milburga Lodge will rehearse a Ceremony of Initiation with Bro David Bromley in the Chair: the event will be graced by the presence of the Provincial Grand Master and the Provincial Director of Ceremonies.

Brethren - please grace the evening with your presence too: the Festive board will be held at the Venue, Madeley, and you may book in by contacting Secretary Brian Walker.

Phil Niblock's Old Man challlenge

Dear Brethren,

The Old Man of Hoy is on every rock climber’s ‘bucket list’ and the remoteness and the stark challenge it presents makes it a great challenge...even to the best. It is all that’s left of an arch of sandstone that stretched out from the headland of the little Isle of Hoy in the Orkneys. It is of friable sandstone, windswept and, in warm weather, a haven for pestilential midges.

I am not one of the best climbers but have the ability to conquer it and a few good reasons to take it on:

Firstly, I promised the widow of a great pal of mine Bob Hawkes, who died last year, that I would climb it in his honour.

Secondly, Old Ben 9461, a small lodge with only 30 something members, many of whom have multiple memberships has a tough challenge to achieve its 2019 Festival target. Perhaps a Province-wide appeal to sponsor me might assist our Charity Steward.

Thirdly, I’m 70 and don’t see why I shouldn’t!

When I climb it is impossible to define as the weather is hardly predictable in Shrewsbury let alone Hoy! Hopefully May but possibly late September 2017. Those b****y midges might not be too evident. JustGiving page here: 

Rev. Phil Niblock, PrGChaplain

Sunday, 19 March 2017

Clive's Six Nations result!

From the 4th February to the 18th of March W.Bro Clive Jones of St Mary’s Lodge 8373,  a totally blind former soldier, took on a series of challenges set for him by his friends and family in Market Drayton. During the Six Nations rugby tournament Clive, a very proud Welshman, set out to raise much needed funds for Blind Veterans UK. This charity was set up for blinded former servicemen and women, and it has supported Clive since he was blinded whilst serving in December 2000. Since then Blind Veterans UK have supported Clive and given him back his independence. Clive now lives independently at home and in his local community, and it’s all thanks to his strength of character and the support from Blind Veterans UK, his family and his friends.

Clive's Six Nations challenge was based in The Kings Arms in Market Drayton, a great pub with a wonderful atmosphere. It has fun, laughter and charity in its heart and raises money through the locals for many different charities and good causes. To read about Clive's challenges click here

Clive has also been supported by many other pubs in town and their customers to make his challenge worth while for Blind Veterans UK. Clive wished to thank all staff and customers at the following pubs for their help: The Kings Arms, The Kings Head, The Lord Hill. The Joiners Arms, The Salopian Star and The Sambrook Vaults. The necessity of visiting all of them (in some cases many times) has been a burden that he has had to bear!

Clive also wished to thank his biggest supporter in Basil Brockhurst of Basil's Taxis. It was his idea that Clive took on this challenge. Thanks also go to Steve of IYF (In Your Face) of Market Drayton for his printing and publicity and Mr Ray Barber (Ernie) for purchasing the shirt. 

Says Clive: "I wished to leave the biggest thank you till last and that is for you. the Brethren of this wonderful Province and the town of Market Drayton for getting behind me to raise a fantastic amount of money for Blind Veterans UK."

"I was set a target of £1,500. With the kindness and generosity of  Market Drayton and the surrounding areas I have raised in excess of £2,000 for this wonderful Charity”. 

Clive looks forward to his next fundraiser, which is a Quiz and Raffle in the Kings Head, Market Drayton on Saturday, 8th April, starting at 2000h. All are welcome and Clive hopes to see you there, to continue our fundraising for the 2019 Festival.

Saturday, 18 March 2017

Idsall Sunday Lunch

Worshipful Master David and his wife Christine Waldron invite you to Idsall lodge's Magical Sunday Lunch on 23rd April in the Mill Room, Mercure Madeley Court Hotel, Telford TF7 5DW, 12 noon for 1 pm.. The cost is £18/head, with children 3-12 £8.95 and children below 3 no charge. The lunch will feature pleasant company but also the added magic of well known entertainer Paul Ray, who will undoubtedly astound with a smile!

Please apply to David Waldron for a menu (three choices) and to book seats.

Freemasonry in the West Indies

An interesting talk by WBro Michael Alexander, Secretary of the Shropshire Masonic Education Group, will take place at the Masonic Hall, Constitution Hill, Wellington on Friday 31st March at 7 pm. There will be a hot buffet (price £10/head). His subject is one dear to his heart - Freemasonry in the West Indies.

MFest300 classic cars on show

Do you have an interesting car or motorcycle?
The organisers of MFest300 have arranged for a static display area, correctly cordoned off and marshalled, on 24th-25th June at Weston Park. If you would like to take part in the display, please contact the organisers.

Globalteer curry a great success!

Brethren - an update on fund raising for the Globalteer Project, which took place in February at the Oruna Cuisine, Market Drayton. The curry evening was run by (who else?) WBro Clive Jones of St Mary's lodge.

Money raised was to bring educational and recreational activities to children in Cusco, Peru's ancient capital, where Geraldine Parkin and Anita Bickerdike are shortly going to do volunteer work.

The good news is that just over £600 was given for the project, with a further £100 added by the lodge. A great result! Our best wishes go with Geraldine and Anita.

Sunday, 5 March 2017

Grand Rank Appointments and Promotions

The RWPrGM/MEGS Peter Taylor announced the following Grand Lodge appointments/promotions to Shropshire Brethren at 6262 Chapter on Saturday, 4th March. We add our congratulations to his, and hope they enjoy their special day in London!

Craft:                 Appointments to PAGDC   
                                    John Hollick and Vince Hughes
Royal Arch:     Appointment to PGStdB      Mike Parry
                              Promotion to PGSwdB        Dave Kettle

Saturday, 4 March 2017

Wine tasting evening brimming over

We understand that there are approaching 100 people already signed in for Roger Pemberton's spectacular Wine Tasting evening - please be quick if you hope to fill the final few spaces!!! For information, the start time is 7 pm..

Inside the Freemasons

from Mike Baker, Director of Communications , UGLE

I can now officially confirm that the broadcast date for the first episode of the documentary series ‘Inside the Freemasons’ will be Monday 17th April at 8pm on Sky 1.

There are five one hour episodes which will be broadcast on consecutive Mondays, but please note that the transmission date is still ‘provisional’.

Fuller details will follow in line with the PGM Forum screening on 8th March, PCO screening and briefing on 9th March and national press and media screening on 10th March at Freemasons’ Hall.

Sky 1 may also be viewed by Now TV, Talk Talk and Virgin Media customers, and the series will be available on DVD after the full series has been broadcast. 

[we understand (unofficially) that Shropshire features strongly in episodes 2 and 3. Enjoy!]

Any metal or valuable objects (especially £1 coins)?

This October the old £1 coin becomes obsolete and is to be replaced by a new design, bringing a fresh look to alms plates everywhere. WBro John Weaver, not slow to see a chance for helping our 2019 Festival, suggests that Charity Stewards and other Brethren in Shropshire may like to promote the "Mint O'Money" Smarties tubes again.

Fill the empty tube with (old) £1 coins and hand them in before the start of October. What better way could there be of getting rid of those unwanted metallic objects???!!! Come along, Brethren - remember your First Degree ceremony!

Masonic Bake-Off!

The Vale of Uscon Lodge 8935 presented this amazing cake to their Almoner WBro Mark Fisk at their most recent meeting which coincided with his 60th Birthday (Mark - surely not! You look so young!!). The cake was made by the daughter of Secretary W. Bro Rodger Davy. Thanks to roving reporter WBro Andy Delamere for the picture!