Kenneth (Ken) James Warburton enjoyed a warm and sincere ceremony to celebrate his 60 years in Freemasonry and as a member of Old Masonians West Lancashire Lodge No 7702 at Liverpool Masonic Hall.
Accepting the proffered gavel of the lodge from WM Keith Birch, Philip Gunning then addressed Ken Warburton. Philip then proceeded to relate to the assembly an account of Ken’s life and work both inside and outside Freemasonry.
He started by giving a list of events which occurred in the world at the time of Ken’s birth in 1929, and the many famous people with whom Ken shared a birth year. He was born in Liverpool and raised by his father and paternal grandparents mainly in the Knotty Ash area of Liverpool and educated locally. He remained in Liverpool throughout the course of the Second World War and on leaving school went to work for a local engineering firm which made diesel engines for the Admiralty and served an apprenticeship as a diesel engineer. Called up in 1947 for National Service, Ken served in the RASC in the maintenance unit mainly in Germany. Having completed his National Service, Ken re-joined his old firm in Liverpool making diesel engines and remained there for 16 years, until he obtained a managerial role in the diesel engine department of another local firm. When this firm was taken over by a larger company, Ken decided to go into partnership with a colleague in the same line and formed Stoneycroft Diesels, where he remained until retirement in 1994.
Ken married Joan in 1955 and they were blessed with a son and daughter who both went on to enter the professions and gave Ken and Joan four grandchildren. Ken and Joan enjoyed travel and holidays throughout the UK and in Norway.
In Freemasonry, Ken was initiated into Sir Walter Raleigh Lodge No 2837 in 1955. He was WM of that lodge in 1972 and subsequently served as lodge secretary and then as organist. On the closure of the lodge in 1999, Ken joined Old Masonians West Lancashire Lodge and held the office of organist for many years. His achievement of 50 years in Freemasonry was celebrated in 2005. Ken’s contributions to Freemasonry were acknowledged when he was appointed to the rank of Past Provincial Junior Grand Deacon in 1984 and subsequently promoted to his current high rank of Past Provincial Junior Grand Warden.
Philip Gunning then called upon group vice chairman David Kemp to read the 60 year certificate issued by the Provincial Grand Master to Ken which he did. Philip then presented Ken with the certificate and passed on to him the heartiest congratulations both of the PrGM and his own. The assembled brethren then concurred with applause. Ken thanked Philip and the brethren for their good wishes.
The assembly adjourned to a lavish festive board and during the celebrations a toast was proposed to Ken, after which he was presented with a gift from the lodge members of engraved cut glass tumblers and a bottle of fine malt whisky, to mark the occasion.