There was a return to familiar ground for Tony Bent, Assistant Provincial Grand Master, who attended at Bryn Masonic Hall to witness the installation ceremony of Heber Lodge No 4388 for the second year running. He was accompanied by fellow grand officers David Ogden and Alec Sharp (who is a member of the lodge) and supported by group vice chairman Geoffrey Porter and group secretary Stewart Blagg. Last year he witnessed the installation of Stephen Hulse at the hands of his son who had travelled 12,000 miles from New Zealand for the occasion, but this time it was Stephen’s turn to install his successor, Ian Green.
Stephen is an experienced Mason, holding the Provincial rank of PPrJGW and has previously occupied the chair 15 years ago, so it was no surprise that he performed the ceremony in a confident yet delightful manner. Stephen was assisted by a number of brethren, skilfully led by DC John Selley, who gave the address to the new master, with Alan Mason giving the address to the wardens. Three junior brethren, Andrew Simpson, John Hampson and Paul Davies, presented the working tools in such a spectacular fashion as to later prompt Tony to take to the floor and personally congratulate each individually.
Following his address to the brethren, Tony brought the greetings of the Provincial Grand Master Tony Harrison and congratulated the new master and his installing master. Tony was pleased to receive a total of £2,679 in charitable donations in favour of; West Lancashire Freemasons’ Charity (£1120), Ashton Masonic Properties (£500), Ashton Masonic Hall Development Group (£315), Cancer Research (£100), Wigan and Leigh Hospice (£322) and the British Heart Foundation (£322). This he said was an astonishing sum of money which would enrich the lives of the eventual recipients.
New WM Ian is a local boy who was introduced into Masonry by a friend in a lodge in Chorley, but chose to enter the Craft closer to home, thus joining Heber Lodge. He works in education as head of work based learning at the City of Liverpool College where he has responsibility for the development of the city’s apprentices. Ian is married to wife Pauline and has two daughters, Amy and Ellie; his hobbies include clay pigeon shooting and fishing.