Companions of Corinthian Chapter No 2350 were honoured and delighted to receive Assistant to the Provincial Grand Principals Ian Cuerden to their installation at Hindley Masonic Hall. Ian was accompanied by fellow grand officers, including Stanley Oldfield and Brian Fairhurst.
Geoffrey Porter (group chairman), a member of the chapter, was in support with fellow group officers David Ogden (vice chairman) and John Selley (secretary). Also in attendance was a member of the chapter Chris Reeman (group charity steward), who was appointed to the acting rank of Pr2ndAGSoj on 12 October and was on duty in that capacity together with the other Wigan group acting officer Ron Belshaw PrGStB.
The three principals, led by Chris Baxendale, opened the chapter and conducted the initial business. This included balloting for and admitting Arthur Swift as a re-joining member. Business being concluded, the principal and distinguished guests were led into the convocation by DC Phil Dobson and welcomed by Chris.
Chris thanked the companions for their support over the year, and went on to install George Cunliffe as his successor to the first principal’s chair. George then installed John Seddon as second principal, and John then followed suit by placing Eddie Atherton into the third principal’s chair. Chris and three principals were assisted in the ceremony by several companions of the chapter. Fred Parr acted as installing scribe Nehemiah, Roy Brooks as installing first principal and Jack Lyon as installing second principal.
Readings were given by Malcolm Keeling, Ken Wilson and Brian Rollins, prayers by John Clegg, and robe addresses by Ray Pye, Neil Whittle and Ken Wilson. Chris then presented the charter to the newly installed first principal George, who then went on to appoint and invest his officers.
The ceremony complete, it was the cue for Ian Cuerden to rise and bring the congratulations of the Grand Superintendent to the newly installed principals, not only for attaining office but also for the high standard in which they conducted the ceremony which was greatly enhanced by the excellent work of the immediate past and installing principal, Chris Baxendale.
It was, he said, a delight to witness the installation, adding congratulations to DC Phil, and to Scribe Ezra Norman Kelly, for all the work and organisation that goes on in the background. Ian also thanked the two acting officers who had come to support him on this occasion.
Ian added his congratulations to chapter members who had received honours at Provincial Grand Chapter. Neil Whittle who received the rank of PPrGStB on his first appointment. Stan Fairhurst, Norman Kelly, Ray Pye and George Seddon received promotion to PPrGSN, and Philip Dobson to PPrDGSwdB.
George thanked Ian for his greetings and kind words, and was further pleased to present him with cheques totalling £1,007, specifically, £207 to West Lancashire Freemasons’ Charity, £200 to the Masonic Hall, and £650 to the MCF 2021 Festival. This, said Ian, was a tremendous sum of money from a chapter, whose members had already given generously in their lodges. He continued that the latter donation to the MCF 2021 Festival qualified the Chapter as vice patron, and he was pleased to present a certificate in recognition of the achievement.
A lively festive board followed in the traditions of Corinthian Chapter, with a fine meal and companionship. New first principal George is retired from his work in education. He is an experienced craft Mason and is a member of Corinthian Lodge No 2350, having served as master in 2009. He is the mentor of the lodge, and holds the Provincial Craft rank of PPrAGSwdB, leaving the chapter in safe hands for the ensuing year.