There were over 70 brethren present at Wellington Park, Leyland Masonic Hall, to witness the installation of Derek Easton into the chair of King Solomon in Euxton Lodge No 7192. In fact the last time Derek was the master of the lodge it was 20 years ago in 1995.
The WM Patrick Martindale opened the lodge in fine form and very quickly executed the business of the lodge. Patrick was in confident mood and one which would be expected of a master coming to the end of his term.
Following a knock at the door, Patrick invited Assistant Provincial Grand Master Harry Cox into the lodge room. Harry thanked the brethren for their very warm welcome and when offered, he took the gavel of the lodge. He stated that it was a pleasure to be in Leyland and thanked the lodge members for the invitation to witness their installation. Harry quipped, as he returned the gavel to Patrick, saying: “Worshipful master, as you know I wasn’t at the practice, so you had better have your gavel back.”
The ceremony started and Derek was presented to the lodge as master elect by Alan Smith. Patrick thanked the officers of the lodge for their very kind and needy support throughout his year in the chair. He also wished that they assist and support the incoming master as they had supported him. Soon, Derek was sitting comfortably in the chair of King Solomon and was listening to the working tools of each of the degrees. Ken Ratcliffe, Mark Carlin and David Graham presented the first, second and third degree tools respectively. There was a special mention for Mark, a junior brother, who excellently presented a long version of the second degree tools. Alan Smith gave an address to the WM and George Askins gave an address to the wardens of the lodge.
Following the completion of the ceremony, Harry stood and brought the good wishes from the Provincial Grand Master Tony Harrison. He said that if Tony had been at the meeting, he would have congratulated the installing master, Patrick and bid the officers a happy and healthy year in office.
Derek’s first task as master of the lodge was a very pleasurable one and he gave a number of cheques to Harry so that they may be faithfully applied. The values and recipients of the cheques were; £550 to West Lancashire Freemasons’ Charity; £250 to The Alzheimer’s Society; £250 to the British Heart Foundation; £250 to Prostate UK; £250 to Miles4Smiles; £947 to Leyland Masonic Halls Appeal Fund and finally a cheque for £45 to the West Lancashire Masonic Sports Society, making a grand total of £2,542. Harry thanked the lodge for their generosity and promised to pass on the cheques to the recipients in due course.
The remainder of the business was conducted before the lodge was closed in perfect harmony and everyone then adjourned to the dining room. At the festive board Harry brought his own congratulations to Derek and the lodge officers. Harry admitted that he had seen a ceremony of a high order and was more than pleased to have been present in the company of this very fine lodge. As ever, the camaraderie was second to none and at the end of a very enjoyable evening the brethren of the lodge and their visitors turned for home knowing that they had witnessed a great installation and that they had a good meal too.