The end of May saw six members of Lodge of Charity No 2651 meeting in Warrington, led by Quentin Newhall WM and three brethren from St Paul’s Lodge No 5459 who meet in Widnes, travel to Bradford to join the brethren of the Lodges of Charity, from Bradford, Belfast, Kidderminster, Shrewsbury, Nottingham, Bolton and Birmingham for the 29th Annual Lodges of Charity meeting. ‘Lodges of Charity’, also known as ‘Family of Charity Lodges’, are the lodges that have a word ‘charity’ in their name. The brethren travelled from the Warrington district in three cars with a road accident holding them up for some time near to the junction of Worsley on the M60 delaying their arrival in Bradford.
The meeting took place in the newly refurbished basement of the Midland Hotel, being the new home for Freemasonry in Bradford. The meeting was attended by 76 Masons, demonstrating the usual level of support for this popular event.
This annual event is a very useful means of keeping Masons in touch and allows members to meet up with old friends and bid a warm welcome to new ones.
The meeting of the Lodge of Charity No 4105 was opened by John Tottle WM. He expressed his delight in being able to welcome so many members and friends old and new to such an auspicious occasion, wishing everyone an enjoyable evening. His good wishes were particularly extended to David Pratt, Provincial Grand Master for Yorkshire West Riding and David Selby, Assistant Provincial Grand Master from County Down of the Irish Constitution, also the dignitaries and very prominent visitors from various other towns, cities and Provinces.
During the meeting Kevin Wilford was passed to the second degree in a ceremony which most of the brethren had never seen or heard of before. Kevin was called upon to prove himself by reciting the obligation that he had taken in his first degree, as well as the usual questions leading from the first to the second degree, after which he was treated to a rendition of the second degree charge, given by Michael Hallet the senior warden.
After the meeting the festive board, which consisted of hock terrine, chicken followed by light lemon tart took place in the ballroom of the hotel. Following on from the meal a raffle was undertaken which raised a total of £350 and was donated the Provincial Grand Master’s Fund.
At the end of the evening John Tottle announced the next meeting would take place in March 2018 in Nottingham and thanked everyone for their attendance and wished all a safe journey home.
Article by Alan Bristow edited by John Starkey and pictures by John Pether.