A golden evening for Bryn

Members of New Sanctuary Lodge No 6604 were proud to host the celebration to commemorate 50 years in Freemasonry of Brian (Bryn) Davy Sykes and Assistant Province Grand Master Harry Cox was present to lead the tribute to Bryn. Harry was supported by North Fylde Group Chairman Duncan Smith and a number of grand and acting Provincial grand officers.

Harry Cox (left) presents the certificate to Bryn.

Harry Cox (left) presents the certificate to Bryn.

The lodge was opened by master of the lodge Damion Davenport who quickly dispatched the necessary business of the evening. Provincial Deputy Grand Director of Ceremonies David Thomas then announced that Harry sought admission to the meeting. Damion welcomed Harry and offered him the gavel of the lodge which he accepted.

Harry began his presentation by informing the brethren that it was a great honour for him to be able to preside over jubilee celebrations such as this. Harry requested that Bryn be placed before him and informed those present that Bryn was born on 15 May 1931 in the Yorkshire market town of Selby, to Herbert, a joiner and Muriel Sykes, a housewife. Bryn attended Drax Grammar School as a day pupil and excelled in mathematics.

On leaving school Bryn was offered a job as a trainee accountant and quantity surveyor. At the same time he had also passed a civil service examination to work in Blackpool. The lure of a post in Blackpool with its renowned Golden Mile and ‘kiss me quick’ hats won the day. It also gave him an opportunity for independence, so Bryn joined the Ministry of War Pensions at Norcross.

In 1951 Bryn was called up for National Service and served in the RAF as a radar operator at RAF Hopton on the east coast between Great Yarmouth and Lowestoft. At that time it was a very small camp of approximately 30 personnel and Bryn was always considered lucky, because in the winter he was one of half a dozen that were billeted in the chalets of a nearby holiday camp because there was insufficient accommodation on the camp to house its increasing number of personnel. Bryn enjoyed national service but not enough to sign up for longer.

Pictured from left to right, are: Harry Cox, Bryn Sykes and Duncan Smith.

Pictured from left to right, are: Harry Cox, Bryn Sykes and Duncan Smith.

In the late 1950s while living in a caravan, Bryn delighted in helping a friend who had bought a third of an acre of land on Marton Moss and saw a market for rearing chickens for the food market, raising them from day old chicks and selling them door to door.

Later this became quite lucrative when he found that he could make a larger profit by buying them wholesale and selling them to his own customers. During this time, one of Bryn’s weekend cycle delivery employees was a youth who later became Chairman of Cadbury Ltd and President of the Confederation of British Industry – Sir John Sunderland.

Bryn met Edna, a secretary for a motorcycle accessory company and the daughter of a local baker, at the Clifton Hotel in Blackpool and they were married in 1961, enjoying a very happy married life for nearly 43 years until Edna passed away suddenly in 2003. Bryn has a son Richard, who also worked in the civil service as an accountant. Richard and his partner Eva have blessed Bryn with a wonderful granddaughter, Luna.

While working as a civil servant dealing with war pensions Bryn was transferred to London to head up an IT project. On completion of the project Bryn moved back to Hesketh House in Fleetwood and continued to work on IT projects until he retired at the age of 60.

Bryn entertains the brethren at dinner.

Bryn entertains the brethren at dinner.

Interest in Freemasonry began at an early age for Bryn when his father suggested to him that he should become a Mason like his uncle Bob. After having lunch with a good friend, Derek (P D) Moore who happened to be secretary of New Sanctuary Lodge, Bryn was invited to join the lodge. So on 10 March 1965 Bryn was initiated into New Sanctuary Lodge.

During his time in the lodge, Bryn has held many offices including charity steward, treasurer and secretary. Bryn was installed as master of the lodge in 1983 and Bryn’s contribution to Masonry was soon recognised and he was appointed to Provincial Grand Lodge in 1993 as Past Provincial Assistant Grand Director of Ceremonies and promoted to the high rank of Past Provincial Grand Superintendent of Works in 2001.

On completion of the narrative, Harry asked Duncan Smith to read the commemorative scroll issued by the Provincial Grand Master Tony Harrison to mark the occasion, which he did. Harry then presented it to Bryn, who thanked Harry for the marvellous tribute he had given him and the assembled brethren responded with loud and prolonged applause.

The members of the lodge then performed a very moving rendition of the “Masonic Chain” and at the festive board Bryn entertained the brethren with memories of his life

Pictured from left to right, are: David Thomas, Martyn Jones, Harry Cox, Damian Davenport, Bryn Sykes, Duncan Smith and Andrew Curtis.

Pictured from left to right, are: David Thomas, Martyn Jones, Harry Cox, Damian Davenport, Bryn Sykes, Duncan Smith and Andrew Curtis.