Warrington Group welcomed their new chairman Andy Barton and vice chairman Chris Gleave. Following the recent retirement of Chris Eyres, Andy will take over the duties of chairman of the group and Chris Gleave as vice chairman. Both names are well known to Warrington Masons.
Andy was initiated into Warrington Temple Lodge No 6420 in 1992, becoming WM in 1999 and again in 2003. He has served as charity steward, assistant director of ceremonies and secretary for a number of years. He was exalted into Gilbert Greenall Chapter No 1250 in 1994, becoming first principal in 2005.
Andy is also a member of Mersey Valley Lodge of Installed Masters No 9057, Loyalty Chapter No 897, Provincial Grand Stewards’ Chapter of West Lancashire No 8516 and is also a high ranking officer in a side order. He has also served the group as vice chairman and secretary for several years.
Andy is married to Kath and has two daughters, Penny and Hayley. Penny is a secondary school history teacher and Hayley is a partner with Kath in the family hairdressing business. Andy is a senior mechanical engineering technician, working in a local company called Solvay Interox, where he began his career 35 years ago. Andy enjoys golf, photography and taking warm relaxing holidays in Spain with his wife Kath.
When asked how he felt when he learned he was to take over as chairman, his comments included, he was very much looking forward to taking over the reins but with a certain amount of trepidation, he is also looking forward to working with Chris and his group secretary John McIntyre, supported by a talented team of group officers.
For Chris, this is his first group appointment. He was initiated into Warrington Lodge No 6987 in 1999 and became the last master of that lodge in 2005 before it amalgamated with other lodges to become Optima Lodge No 6101. He is now a member of Lodge of Charity No 2651 and is currently director of ceremonies, an office which he also holds in the Mersey Valley Lodge of Installed Masters.
Chris was exalted into Gilbert Greenall Chapter in 2000 and became first principal in 2009. He is also a member of Loyalty Chapter and Provincial Grand Stewards’ Chapter of West Lancashire. He also holds a high office in two side orders.
Chris is very much looking forward to the challenges ahead, although he appreciates that he has much to learn about the group and Provincial structures. He says that he has always been very thankful of the support he has received during his time in Masonry and he knows that the other members of the group executive will continue to assist him in developing into his new role.
Chris is a retired head teacher and is married to Hannah, who is also a retired teacher. They both enjoy travelling. Hannah is a keen bridge player and Chris’s hobbies include motorcycling and tinkering with anything old and mechanical. He is a member of Winnington Park Rugby Football Club in Northwich, a club he has played for and latterly supported, since leaving school.