Sunday, 25 June 2017

Weston has a "Western" feel as we celebrate 300 years!

At long last Freemasonry under the United Grand Lodge of England has entered its fourth century, and the way that Masons in Shropshire, Staffordshire, Worcestershire and Warwickshire chose to celebrate was thoroughly in keeping with modern values. The decision to hold a Family Fun weekend at Weston Park on the Shropshire/Staffordshire border over the weekend of the 24th-25th June proved to be a great success, with thousands attending - Masons, their partners, families and friends.

There was a great deal to do aside from enjoying warm but occasionally blustery weather: but the highlight was undoubtedly the storming of the Alamo (or at any rate, the re-enactment of the event) by some 500+ enthusiasts, including (so they said) one or two from the States whose forbears had actually taken part! The audience also included two Masons from California, pictured (right) with
some well-known Shropshire faces!

Not everyone camped or caravanned overnight, but many picnicked, a few tried out the beer tent, it was good to see so many of the charities there - and so many children! -  and at length all went away with a wonderful sense of togetherness and happiness. Our thanks indeed to all who organised and assisted with this memorable event. Please send your special photos to me if you want them to be considered for the blog: please note that for reasons of space I can only publish a handful!!!

MCF vote to win money for Shropshire's charities

To celebrate the Tercentenary of United Grand Lodge, awards totalling £3 million are to be made to charities across the jurisdiction of UGLE.

Each Province is supporting charities selected by themselves: in Shropshire, we are supporting Shropshire MIND, the Move On club, Perry RDA and the Shropshire Rural Community Council. But WE NEED YOU TO VOTE - and your friends, relatives and workmates - one vote per person - to ensure our charities receive their fair share of the cash!!!

June 12th saw the launch of an online vote in which you are able to decide how much of the MCF's £3 million will come to Shropshire! Vote for one of our four nominated charities, and get colleagues, friends and family to do the same!              Here's how to vote:

1.     click on
2.     scroll down the page till you reach
3.     Click on
Explore the region...
4.     Select your chosen Shropshire charity then click on
5.     You will be asked for
your name and e-mail address. This is to ensure no block voting!

Details of the four charities may be found by clicking on one or other of the links below:



Inside the Freemasons DVD now available.

The long awaited DVD of the SKY documentary "Inside the Freemasons" is now available to order.

Included here is a link to Letchworth's shop. Cost is £14.99 net.

Grenfell Tower disaster

It is no surprise to hear that London Freemasons have made a prompt £100,000 award to the disaster relief fund for the Grenfell Tower fire.

Sir Michael Snyder, Leader of London Freemasons, commented: 'This donation is made on behalf of all London Freemasons. 'The Metropolitan Masonic Charity regularly supports many local charities and community initiatives across London and we wish to assist those who have lost their homes as well as all of their possessions.'

For more, click here.

SMCA donations to local charities

Just under a week ago, the Shropshire Masonic Charitable Association gathered for its annual gala givings to local charities. 32 grants were made totalling nearly £25,000, and most of these charities were represented at the event. RWBro Peter Taylor presided as the representatives of the worthy causes received their cheques and spoke a little about their work. 

Some visitors were very clearly affected by the scale and scope of Masonic charitable giving. Although the occasion followed a similar pattern to previous years, one charity made sure that 2017 stood out in the memory, presenting RWBro Peter Taylor with a rugby ball signed by Jason Leonard. Our PrGM showed he still had the talent to throw a dummy as he feinted his way past the rest of the top dais...

Headline grants included those made to Shropshire MIND, the Masonic Fishing Charity, the Shrewsbury Ark, all three Shropshire hospices, the Midlands Air Ambulance, Combat Stress and Macmillan Cancer Care and SSAFA, all of who received four-figure sums. Often, however, smaller amounts meant as much to small local charities like the Shrewsbury Children's Bookfest and the Newport First Responders.

A buffet lunch after the gala presentation enabled those who attended to meet others and compare notes, and a different kind of spread in the "Shropshire Magazine" is expected later in the year !

(pictured top: the gathering after the gala presentation: middle: the Move On club, one of 32 charities receiving donations this year: bottom: an unlikely back row?)

Well done, Errol!

My name is Errol Dyer, and I am a retiree ex-local Businessman, living in Clows Top and a member of the Tenbury & District Art Group, that meets every Thursday at the Scouts' hut in Tenbury Wells. I am also a member of Cleobury Lodge.

I am a member of the SAA (Society of All Artists), a National group for all artists in the UK and abroad. They circulate a monthly magazine and run demonstrations etc.

They hold an annual competition for artists of all skills, headed The SAA Artist of the Year Competition, from beginners to professionals, with 35 different sectors, ie. Landscapes, portraits and animals. I have only been painting for just under two years and qualified for the Beginners category and entered two paintings.

I was informed by post recently that I had been awarded the SAA Artist of the Year, June Atherton Beginners Award for the painting entitled: “My Hare with attitude” (see below). The painting will hang with all the other winners in an exhibition first to the SAA Head Office in Newark, Notts. and feature in several events there between July and October, and then move to the highly prestigious ICHF event at the Birmingham NEC from the 2nd to the 5th of Nov. 2017, visited by thousands.

The painting was the first painting I sold last year at our club exhibition in Tenbury Wells. The owners have very kindly lent me the original for this period and will be getting it back in November.

Please contact me if you need any more information
E: T: 01299 832383 M: 07933 993086

Saturday, 10 June 2017

Tim Owen fifty years and going strong!

Earlier this summer, Sabrina Lodge 4158 celebrated its most senior member's 50 years in Freemasonry when WBro Tim Owen was presented with his 50 year certificate by RWBro Peter Allan Taylor, PrGM.

Tim had to wait a week or two more to receive the finished article because it then went for framing by WBro David Fry of Salopian Lodge of Charity 117. As you can see, David made a superb job of it, and the cost of the framing was met by the Brethren of Sabrina Lodge. Congratulations again, Tim!

From Errol - with attitude!

Congratulations to Errol Dyer - well-known Secretary of Cleobury Lodge - whose painting "Hare with Attitude" won him the title of Artist of the Year, in the Beginner (under 2 years) section of the SAA (Society of All Artists) a national organisation. 


Weston Park, the stately home on the Shropshire\Staffordshire border will be home to a weekend of family fun celebrating 300 years of Freemasonry this June. The event invites all to come along for an entire weekend of exciting activities and entertainment for everybody to enjoy.

The event will take place on Saturday 24th June – Sunday 25th June at Weston ParkAdult tickets cost £15 in advance, or £20 on the day. Children’s tickets cost £7. Tickets are valid for both days.

The highlight of the weekend will be the much anticipated re-enactment of the Battle of the Alamo, with eight hundred Mexicans in full uniform attacking a mock fort defended by one hundred Texans. The demonstration will use real gunpowder, cannons and explosives - making the event really go out with a bang.

Other events to enjoy throughout the weekend will be firework displays, hot air balloon ‘Night Glow’, animal displays and a Kids Fun Run, as well as free Fun Fair and Railway rides for all visitors.

Live music will also be present over the weekend, brass and string bands performing, the “Abba Reunion” tribute band making an appearance, and a performance from the Kaleidoscope Theatre Group.

The event is being organised by the Provinces of Shropshire, Staffordshire, Worcestershire and Warwickshire.

MFest 300 Chairman, John Treanor, says “The weekend celebrates 300 years of Freemasonry and has been three years in the planning! The celebrations are open for everyone to enjoy, not just those associated with the Freemasons' Society. As one of the
largest fundraising bodies in the UK we will be donating any profits generated to Midland Air Ambulance.

"We have visitors travelling from all over the world, especially from Texas, who are particularly looking forward to the Battle of the Alamo re-enactment! We are looking forward to an action packed weekend.” 

Advanced tickets can be purchased at

Calling Masonic bookworms!

I have accumulated a number of Masonic reference books, many relating to American lodge procedures and rituals (which vary from state to state).  I have visited many lodges in the USA and it is unlikely I will visit any again. 

Unfortunately I have always been grilled on passwords, etc before being allowed into their Craft lodges.  They are very vigilant regarding the states of regular masons and there are a number of quasi-mason groups who might sneak in.

Is there anyone that might want these?

Yours sincerely and fraternally

An invitation from Metropolitan Grand Lodge

for any not attending the Shropshire Tercentenary London 'bash':

As there are limited places at the Royal Albert Hall and even fewer seats at the dinner afterwards at Battersea Evolution there will be a streaming of the Tercentenary meeting in the Grand Temple at Freemasons’ Hall, which will be followed by a dinner afterwards in the Grand Connaught Rooms.

The screening will be on a giant screen constructed on the dais in front of the Grand Organ and easily visible to all present.  Entrance to this event is just £10, which will include a free 72 page A4 Tercentenary commemorative brochure (usual price £10).
The screening and the optional dinner afterwards in the Grand Connaught Rooms will be attended by the wives and partners of the Grand Masters of recognised Grand Lodges from around the world as well as other distinguished brethren from other constitutions.  The dinner will be hosted by RWBro the Rt Hon the Earl Cadogan, PDepGM, and RWBro Simon Duckworth OBE DL PJGW, Deputy Metropolitan Grand Master.

The dinner will commence with a champagne reception followed by a four course dinner including carefully selected red and white wines.
16.30  Screening of the Albert Hall meeting of Grand Lodge
18.15  Champagne Reception in the Grand Connaught Rooms
18.45  Four course dinner in the Grand Connaught Rooms
21.00  Carriages

Both events are open to all  – masons, non-masons, family and friends.  Please feel free to distribute to all your members.

Tickets are available here:-

Rig for both screening and dinner: Gentlemen - Lounge suits - no regalia - Ladies equivalent.

Look forward to you joining us.

Tuesday, 6 June 2017

Tercentenary Jewel

News concerning the beautiful blue Tercentenary Jewel - the stock of jewels held by the Province of Shropshire is now exhausted, so please do not contact the Province for one. 

They may still be obtained from Masonic regalia sources, for example Toye, Kenning & Spencer.

A-Hoy again!!!

Apparently Phil Niblock's video from the top of the Old Man of Hoy has foxed some of you who do not possess Facebook accounts! For your benefit, here is the link to the same video, now placed on Youtube by Andy Delamere - click here to see Phil at the top of his four hour climb.

Impressed? There is still a little time to give to his JustGiving page - please click here and donate!

I'm a lumberjack...

from Peter Cuthbert:      

Young Cleobury and Ludlow Masons helping out a young-at-heart Cleobury Mason! The picture shows Tim Elcock (up the tree) and Kevin Gwilliam and Guy James felling and logging. 

The Christmas tree was too close to our conservatory and had to come down: Tim kindly volunteered his and the others' services! A lovely example of practical Masonry in action. Many thanks to all our Masonic  lumberjacks... They cut down trees, they...

Fishy goings-on near Much Wenlock

On Saturday 3rd June the MTSFC held its second event of the season at Dale Fisheries, Longville in the Dale at the home of Mel and Jeanette McFarland.

We had 12 participants from the Move on Club in Shrewsbury.   This was a coarse fishing day with many fish being caught and a great time was had by all.

Peter and Petrina Robinson would like to thank everybody who helped to make the day such a great success and a special thank you must go to  Dave Kettle for presenting the certificates and medals.

Next event will be a fly fishing day on Saturday 17th June at The Brades.  If anyone would like to come and see an event please contact Peter Robinson on 01948 780218.

New Universities Scheme Lodge

Nine members from The Iron Bridge Lodge 9897 including the PrGM witnessed the Consecration of the newest Universities Scheme Lodge in Warwickshire, Collegiate Lodge No. 9943. The PGM was the consecrating SW. Our honorary member W. Bro. Mark Greenburgh was installed as the first Worshipful Master. Thanks to WBro Andy Delamere who was needless to say there with his camera!

It's a Classic!

Margaret and Nigel Pocock (St. Mary`s 8373) drove down to Windsor Great Park in their 1960 MG.A to attend the first of the Classic 300 Classic Car Tours which are being held nationwide in celebration of the Tercentenary of United Grand Lodge.
The Launch Event was held in Windsor Great Park and was briefly attended by HRH The Duke of Kent who was steered down a row of Local Masons and their cars before his return. The start gate shows Nigel`s red MG.A starting the short Tour of the locality.

The next event will be Weston Park on 24th and 25th June which will be the best event of the year of course - not to mention a little closer to home!!