The Masonic Hall, Hope Street, Liverpool was the venue for a very special occasion which took place at Liverpool Lodge No 1547, when the master elect Bernard Ashley was installed in the chair of King Solomon, in the presence of his twin brother Roy Ashley.
In the absence of the WM, the lodge was opened by the immediate past master, director of ceremonies and installing master for the evening, Tom Hough. Tom announced and admitted Roy Ashley, the representative of the Provincial Grand Master Mark Matthews, accompanied by the Liverpool Group Vice Chairman Bob Paterson and group secretary Neil Francis together with other Provincial grand officers.
Bernard Ashley was presented by Roy Cowley as master elect, and he was then installed into the chair for the ensuing year by Tom Hough. He was ably assisted by visiting brethren George Flinn as senior warden, George Rowe as junior warden and John Whalley as inner guard, known as ‘The Taverners’ who provide assistance to lodges in delivering ceremonial ritual.
Once installed, the third degree working tools were presented by Jack Parker, with his own unique and personal adaption to the WM. The second degree working tools were presented by Tom McLaughlin and the first degree working tools were presented by Geoff Roberts. The address to the WM was given by special request by no other than his twin brother, Roy Ashley and the address to the wardens were ably given by George Flinn.
Following the address to the lodge brethren by Roy Ashley, he brought personal greetings from the Provincial Grand Master Mark Matthews to the WM and a special mention to the installing master Tom Hough for conducting an excellent ceremony and the visiting brethren acting as Principal officers, as well as those who delivered the working tools, not forgetting Jack Parker on his personal and sincere delivery of the working tools.
Roy was then presented with a list of donations that the lodge had made to Masonic and non-Masonic charities to the value of £300. Roy thanked the brethren of the lodge for their generous donations.
After the lodge was closed, all the brethren then retired to the dining room for a festive board of vegetable soup, roast beef and fruit trifle. In his response to the toast, Roy spoke about membership, retention and the importance of enjoying Freemasonry. He gave mention to the excellent work carried out by everyone taking part in the ceremony. He concluded with a very special heart-warming and personal comment to the WM, his twin brother Bernard.
After a rousing rendition of the Master’s Song by Tom McLaughlin, a raffle was held and raised a magnificent sum of £190, as well as an additional £91.41 from the alms plate collection in the lodge.