Almost 100 brethren assembled at Cleveleys Masonic Hall to witness Paul Darlington being installed into the chair of Anchorsholme Lodge No 5854. The representing officer on this occasion was the Provincial Senior Grand Warden John Lee, supported by Assistant Provincial Grand Master Harry Cox, Past Assistant Provincial Grand Master Terry Hudson, North Fylde Group Chairman Duncan Smith, vice chairman Peter Greathead, Keith Jackson, David Randerson, Giles Berkeley, Ted Rhodes, South Fylde Group Chairman Ian Ward, David Thomas, Tony Hough and Neil MacSymons. Also in attendance were acting Provincial officers Alex Tomlinson, Bernard Snape, Stuart Gay, Alan Howie and Tony Rigby.
With the regular lodge business dispatched by the master Ivan Hicks, it was time to invite Cliff Boynton to act as installing senior warden, Ron Newton to act as installing junior warden and Eddie Braithwaite to remain as installing inner guard.
The galaxy of grand and acting Provincial officers processed into the lodge in a most dignified manner and, after the usual salutations, the master elect Paul Darlington was presented by his good friend Bob Bennett. The master elect was installed in excellent fashion by Ivan Hicks, ably assisted by the director of ceremonies David Britton. The working tools were particularly well presented by Geoff Diggles, Jamie Blundell, and David Edwards, all of whom are light blue Masons.
The officers of the lodge were then invested, during which the address to the deacons was shared by Alex Tomlinson and Bernard Snape. The address to the stewards was given by Bob Boal, and addresses to the master and wardens were delivered with panache by Bob Bennett and Harry Cox respectively. Finally John Lee addressed the brethren of the lodge.
At the conclusion of the installation John Lee congratulated Ivan on the manner in which he had installed Paul and thanked the director of ceremonies David Britton for his invaluable contribution.
On behalf of the lodge, Paul presented John with cheques for charities with a combined total of £5,380, consisting of £250 to the Rosemere Cancer Fund, £250 to Heart of Gold, £380 to the Cleveleys Masonic Hall building fund, and a magnificent £4,500 to the Masonic Charitable Foundation 2021 Festival, enabling the lodge to be one of the first to have Grand Patron status. Regional Charity Steward Ted Rhodes presented the master with a certificate marking this fine achievement.
The brethren were treated to a wonderful festive board and John Lee responded to toast number five with humour and in his usual erudite manner. A Westhoughton raffle took place which raised £352 for charities. The toast to the newly made master was given by Ivan Hicks, and the master’s song was rendered by Hugh Mett. At the conclusion of a marvellous evening the tyler’s toast was presented by Steve Clarke.
Article written by Hugh Mett.