The heading is not too dissimilar to the words that the Installing Master, Worshipful Brother Keith Hind gave, in response to his toast, at the Festive Board. Bro. Keith has had a most enjoyable year, but he was content to relinquish the reins at the Installation, on 2 April, to Brother Peter Richmond – as the 37th Worshipful Master of the Beaumont Lodge of Mark Master Masons No. 1523. This was in the presence of our much liked and respected Provincial Grand Master, Right Worshipful Brother James Steggles, now having returned from his annual tan topping sojourn in Tenerife, and joined by W.Bro. Ian Yates, Representative of the Charity Committee. Other visiting Mark dignitaries (there were 10 visitors in all) included V.W. Bro. George Robert Fraser Platt, in good form, W.Bro. Clive Edwards, President of the Huddersfield, Halifax and Districts Installed Masters Association and W.Bro. Stephen Wood, Representative of the Charity Committee.
W.Bro. Keith conducted the Installation of his friend, and fellow crown green bowler, in a most warm and sincere fashion, ably assisted by W.Bro. Ian Pattinson P.A.G.D.C. who despatched the signs and secrets in excellent form. I must also mention W.Bro. Alex M Caldwell who addressed the Wardens, an example to all at 89 years of age.
W.Bro. Peter then appointed and invested his Officers, and what a pleasure to witness all the progressive offices take up by Brethren, not a Past Master in sight. I look forward to the day when that is once again the norm.
The Past Master’s Jewel was presented to W.Bro. Keith by W.Bro. G. Gary Parker. Whilst thanking him for all his efforts on behalf of the Lodge over the past year, he made particular reference to the fact that W.Bro. Keith had represented the Lodge in the Huddersfield, Halifax & Districts I.M.A. and wider, thereby fulfilling one of his key duties.
The Provincial Grand Master, in response to his Toast, reminded W.Bro. Peter that as the Worshipful Master he was now the Ambassador for the Lodge and that it was his duty to represent it around the Province, but particularly within his own Huddersfield, Halifax & Districts I.M.A. The formation committee for the 2023 Mark Festival is now in place with the Deputy Provincial Grand Master, Richard Boswell Puttrell as Chairman. The annual festivals are the main source of income for the Mark Benevolent Fund providing finance for initiatives such as, ‘Hope for Tomorrow’ where 10 mobile chemotherapy units have been committed at a cost of some £2.6 million. As individuals, could we please look at the 250 Club for, as the original remit unwinds; surplus funds will be available to the Festival.
W.Bro. Ian Yates confirmed that all the defibrillators were now delivered although he was not aware that any had been brought into use as yet – and we hope that none will ever need to be!. They have been welcomed throughout the Province but the work of the Cleeves and Whitehead Trust does not stop there. He repeated that the Trustees are still concerned that some our Brethren and dependents in need may be being overlooked. To that end, he suggested that should a Brother be missing from Lodge or rarely attending, apparently throughout the Province this figure is nearly 50%, a visit, not a telephone call, is arranged to confirm that all is well, Brethren that is a must!
Unfortunately, amongst the Visitors, there wasn’t one Master in the Chair. This reinforces the message from our Provincial Grand Master. No Masters in the Chair were in attendance yet it is one of the most important duties that an incoming Worshipful Master should commit himself to do on behalf of his Lodge, his Brethren.
Smile, be happy and enjoy your Mark Masonry
W.Bro. D. Smith P.G.S.D., P.Prov.G.J.W.