A family affair it most certainly was with the Master elect being Brother Martyn Corfield, son of past Deputy Provincial Grand Master, Very Worshipful Brother Robert, ‘Bob’, Corfield. This took place in the presence of the Assistant Provincial Grand Master, Worshipful Brother Dr. Rod Taylor accompanied by Worshipful Brother Alan Corbridge, elected member of the Charity Committee and a veritable bevy of the great and good of West Yorkshire glitterati assembled by the Deputy Provincial Grand Director of Ceremonies, Worshipful Brother Andrew Brown. These contained 3 Past Provincial Grand Masters, Right Worshipful Brothers Philip Birch, Brian Battye and James Truswell, Past Assistant Provincial Grand Master, Very Worshipful Brother John Clough and Very Worshipful Brothers Peter Brindley and Edward Patnick, wow!
The opening procedures out of the way, all admitted and seated, Bro. Martyn was presented by his Dad, very moving and with V.W. Bro. Bob in total control. The Worshipful, and Installing, Master, Worshipful Brother Terrence Worthington then took up the mantle and, despite obvious initial nerves and being observed by such an eminent gathering, Installed W. Bro. Martyn, in a most genuine, warm manner and the signs and secrets in superb style. With the new Worshipful Master ensconced, the remainder of the inner workings were concluded and the Brethren admitted. The working tools were then perfectly despatched by Brother, Andrew Evans, obviously a fine ritualist.
The appointment and investiture of the Officers of the year passed without any comment other than when Brother Arthur Leach was asked to stand in as Senior Deacon, Director of Ceremonies Worshipful Brother Ian Smith pointing out to the W. M. that ‘ he is the one in the Craft Tie’. There is no doubt that if any film maker were to require a double for George V he need go no further than employing W. Bro. Ian, a perfect fit. The Addresses commenced with V. W. Bro. Bob giving the Address to the Worshipful Master, his Son, very emotional for both I think, that to the Wardens by Worshipful Brother Maurice Smithurst, the Overseers, Worshipful Brother Philip Clarke and the Brethren by Worshipful Brother Peter Smith, excellent from start to finish. The remaining Agenda items expeditiously concluded by W. Bro. Martyn Corfield, all adjourned for a well earned Festive Board with the Brethren of the Danum Lodge of Mark Master Masons No. 398 feeling justifiably proud of a job well done.
The Provincial Grand lodge Toast was very ably undertaken by Worshipful Brother Keith Marriott who displayed the right level of ingratiation without being too obsequious. Responding the Assistant Provincial Grand Master, W. Bro. Dr. Rod Taylor, congratulated W. Bro. Martyn on attaining the chair of this fine Lodge and wished him the health to enjoy his year. He then reflected upon the enjoyment that demonstrably all had experienced. He referred to the Ancients who considered that all life was due to 4 elements, Wind, water, earth and fire. However the missing ingredient was the 5th element being the Quintessence of life and that, Brethren is the Soul of Masonic friendship.
The toast to the Charities was presented by Worshipful Brother John Bulliman, a delight to see him present and looking well. In responding W. Bro. Alan reminded the Brethren that the Mark Benevolent Fund is the national Charity, fulfilling our obligations to major projects, These have recently included Flood relief, particularly in the North of England, ‘Hope for tomorrow’, the provision of mobile chemotherapy units to rural areas and, only just announced, the replacement of 52 Ambulances and support vehicles for the St John’s Ambulance Brigade, all most worthy causes as I am sure you will agree.
A wonderful Mark Masonic evening which will live in the memories of those present for a long time.
Smile, be happy and enjoy your Mark Masonry.
Worshipful Brother Duncan Smith P.G.S.D.