It’s not often that you get to experience a display of such respect, happiness and admiration between brothers (or should I say blood brothers) during a meeting.
The meeting started with the members balloting and welcoming not one, two, or three, but four joining members into their lodge. As the evening progressed it was clear that Longton Lodge No 6237 is certainly a strong and thriving lodge, with 20 members present.
New immediate past master Michael Frankland offered the master’s chair to Philip Monks for the purpose of installation and Philip certainly delivered a superb performance.
The master elect, Nigel Monks, was installed into the master’s chair in an all-round excellent ceremony, led by his younger brother Philip Monks. With a total of 52 masons attending the meeting, it was clear the early start did not put anyone off from such a special event.
Michael Singleton gave the third degree tools, James Heaton gave the second degree tools and Michael Frankland gave the first degree tools. Philip Monk gave the address to the master, Neal Atkinson that to the wardens and Peter Lockett gave the address to the brethren of the lodge.
It was great to see so many different members of the lodge involved in the installation and each brother presented their parts in fine fashion, adding to a most enjoyable evening.
Assistant Provincial Grand Master Peter Lockett was in attendance as the representative of the Provincial Grand Master Mark Matthews, and he was presented with cheques for charity totalling the fantastic amount of £2,275.
Other esteemed grand officers present were group chairman Peter Allen, Paul Renton, Christopher Blackwell and Ken Williams, accompanied by acting Provincial grand officers Neil Ward, Stephen Dunn, Mark Humphrey and Nick Ridd, each of whom commented on the fine ritual and strength of the lodge.
Once the lodge was closed, everyone retired to the bar and festive board to further enjoy the hospitality of the lodge. Visitors were presented with a very enjoyable five course meal. With drinks flowing, toasts made and songs sung, the evening was topped off with a huge £326 collected for Masonic charities through the Chorley raffle.
The evening ended with a lively master’s song and touching visitor’s response from Chris Wilkinson of Pilling Lodge No 7879, who is a frequent guest to Longton Lodge and has seen Nigel Monks journey from inner guard to the master’s chair completed. It was a great evening at a great lodge.