The Provincial Grand Master Tony Harrison made his first visit to the Woolton Group to attend the Masters and First Principals Dinner. On his arrival Tony, was welcomed by Assistant Provincial Grand Master Kevin Poynton, Woolton Group Chairman Andrew Whittle and vice chairman Vic Albin. Also in attendance was Provincial Grand Secretary Peter Taylor, Provincial Grand Director of Ceremonies Keith Kemp, Provincial Senior Warden Peter Pemberton, Provincial Junior Warden Malcolm Lockyer, along with a number of other acting Provincial officers in attendance.
Tony then move on to the Ancient Suite were he and the senior Provincial officers shared tea and biscuits with the masters and first principals of the Woolton Group. Tony and the Provincial officers spent some time chatting with the masters and first principals before moving on to the Royal Suite for the question and answer session.
With the Royal Suite was full to capacity, Keith Kemp asked all to stand and welcome the Provencal Grand Master. Tony entered the Royal Suite to a rapturous welcome and took his place on the question and answer panel with Peter Taylor and Kevin Poynton. This session took in a number of questions regarding increasing the membership in Freemasonry. Tony said that we should be more open to the general public about Freemasonry and what we do, he also said there was a growing number of hits on the Provincial web site and that could only be good for Freemasonry in general,
A question was then asked regarding the numbers of young people joining Freemasonry to which Peter Taylor informed the meeting that the University Programme was doing very well and attracting large numbers. Peter also said that the lodges with a large number of members were the lodges that have an active social calendar. Kevin Poynton also informed the meeting that lodges should use there group websites to promote there social calendars such as Ladies Nights and Sunday Lunches, as this was one way to encourage more people to look at joining Freemasonry. This concluded the question and answer session and all then retired to the festive board.
At the festive board there were more than 90 brethren and companions dining, in a very relaxed and pleasant atmosphere. Phil Grambrill had the honour of proposing the toast to the PrGM Tony Harrison. Tony then responded and thanked Phil for proposing the toast, he also thanked Andrew Whittle for inviting him and his officers to the dinner and he then congratulated Andrew on his promotion to Grand Rank and congratulated Vic Albin on his promotion in Provincial Grand Lodge. Tony also tanked all the acting officers for attending.
Andrew Whittle thanked Tom Lunt, Peter Taff and group secretary Mike Cunliffe for the work they had put in for making the evening a success. Andrew then had the pleasure of presenting the following cheques to Tony on behalf of the Woolton Group members; £500 to the West Lancashire Freemasons’ Charity, £250 to Tithebarn, £150 Help the Heroes and £100 to the Guide Dogs for the Blind. Tony thanked the Woolton Group members on behalf of the organisations that would benefit from the donations.