Ralph Dumbell celebrated the magnificent achievement of serving 60 years as a Freemason in the company of his friends and colleagues of Prescot Lodge No 5470 and his guests.
The ceremony was presided over by Assistant Provincial Grand Master Tony Bent who delivered a fitting tribute to this well-loved Mason pointing out that to serve 60 years in Masonry and to reach the magnificent age of 91 years were both achievements worthy of praise.
Ralph started his Masonic career in Marlborough Lodge No 1620 on 7 October 1957 having been proposed by his cousin and friend. He later joined Prescot Lodge on the 6 March 1972, after being proposed by another well-known and well-respected Mason, Ron Clark. Ron was therefore pleased and honoured to be asked to act as WM for the celebration ceremony.
During the ceremony, Tony Bent gave a very interesting precis of Ralph’s life and Masonic career. This was followed by a presentation by Tony of the certificate of 60 years’ service, which had been read out by the St Helens and Prescot Group Chairman Colin Rowling.
The ceremony was further enhanced when Tony took the unusual step of promoting Ralph to the prestigious rank of Past Provincial Grand Sword Bearer with immediate effect, and investing him with the jewel of that rank on the floor of the lodge.
During the festive board further eulogies were delivered by Ron Clark, and Ralph was presented with a fine bottle of vintage port from some of his closest friends and a copy of the Times newspaper dated the day of his initiation.
Ralph also received a set of miniature Masonic working tools from the brethren of Prescot Lodge along with a magnificent cake made by the wife of one of the brethren.
Ralph replied to the toast to his health in his customary inimitable fashion with several brethren calling for his infamous ‘tractor joke’. Ralph resisted calls for this but promised, or perhaps that should have been ‘threatened’, to deliver it on a future occasion. All the brethren present were fulsome in their praise for this wonderful Freemason.
Story and pictures by John Whalley.