As we all entered the year of 2020, who could have foreseen the terrible pandemic that was to sweep the world and change the way we all live? Freemasonry was no exception to this, resulting in the unavailability of meeting places, with sadly the ultimate price paid by some brethren.
Liverpool Masonic Hall has not escaped this, with no meetings being available since early March and probably not until well into 2021. There is light on the horizon however with the promise that a vaccine may be available soon. While all these events have been unfolding, members of the Liverpool Hall Committee, and in compliance with the designated guidelines, have worked tirelessly when possible in maintaining and improving the hall facilities.
Those that meet there should have received a letter through their relevant secretaries with regard to what has been happening throughout the hall. So here is a brief résumé. All meetings previously held in either the Ionic or Doric Rooms will now be in the Tuscan Rooms which have been completely refurbished with the floors polished and sanded, carpets cleaned, and a new carpet of appropriate design fitted.
Similar is the Egyptian Room which has had the locker room emptied, with the lockers repositioned elsewhere, and has been repainted, carpets cleaned and new lighting fitted. This will now form a chapter committee room. With the Tuscan and Egyptian rooms fully utilized, a new toilet facility has been introduced on the same floor level.
The Roman and Adams Suites remain unchanged, but they likewise have been refurbished with carpets cleaned or replaced and parquet flooring re-fixed, cleaned and polished; the WM platform rebuilt in the Roman Room, with the chairs of the WM and wardens reupholstered.
Likewise, the mezzanine floor has not been ignored, with the flooring cleaned and re-polished, as has the main banqueting room, along with the members’ bar, which has also been fitted with new tables and chairs. What was once the Provincial Office has now been converted into Committee Rooms No 1 and No 2. Included with the other general improvements that have been done around the hall, thanks are due to committee members and hall director’s (in alphabetical order) Roy Ashley, Roy Cowley, John Roberts and Dave Sayce.
During this period a greatly reduced traditional annual service of remembrance at the war memorial within Liverpool Masonic Hall took place at the correct time and in the honoured tradition of 11 o’clock on 11 November. For the first time in living memory the brethren and their families were unable to attend. Liverpool Masonic Hall Chairman John Roberts however laid the wreath on behalf of the hall, while Liverpool Group Chairman Dave Johnson laid that on behalf of the group. Vice chairman Tim Burgess laid a wreath from the members of Blenheim Lodge No 7519.
A commemorative order of service which is normally produced and distributed by members of the Merseyside Association for Masonic Research based at Liverpool Masonic Hall is available on request.