A very warm welcome greeted the Deputy Provincial Grand Master, Worshipful Brother Alan Oldfield and his Escort of twenty Provincial Grand Lodge Officers. The Lodge was opened in due form by the Worshipful Master, W.Bro. Ken Parkinson and the minutes of the previous meeting were approved.
A report then brought forward the Provincial Director of Ceremonies, W.Bro. John Vause who announced that W.Bro. Alan was without and he was duly admitted, with Escort, and took his place. W.Bro. Ken offered him the gavel pointing out that it was his fault that he was here at all, Alan having proposed him as a candidate at Fearnley. He took a short step backward leaving room for Alan to take his place, no chance, gavel returned and onwards with the ceremony of Advancement for Bro. Brian Reeves. He entered flanked by the Senior Deacon, W.Bro.Nick Hopwood and the Junior Deacon. Bro. Eric Denton, both of whom performed superbly throughout proceedings. He was then obligated by the W.M., left the Lodge for a short while returning to have his work inspected by the Overseers who performed admirably, particularly W.Bro. Trevor Brearley, Master Overseer, in his own unique style, a reference to the stone being almost square giving rise to some amusement.
The Signs and Secrets were then demonstrated and explained by W.Bro. Alan Corbridge followed by the Badge and Jewel being presented by the Senior Warden, Bro. Mark Harrison and explained by W.Bro John Clark. Finally, as W.Bro. Alan said , and to cap an excellent ceremony, the Working Tools delivered by W.Bro. Gary Baines, absolutely first class by all. The remaining Agenda items were then taken , the Dep.P.G.M. retired and the Lodge was closed.
A most welcome and sumptuous Festive Board followed, fifty nine dining but excellent attendances are becoming the norm at Integrity. The Toast to the Province was appropriately submitted by W.Bro.Ken who was clearly delighted to see W.Bro. Alan in the Lodge during Ken’s year in Office. Alan began his response by reminding all that the Annual Meeting of Provincial Grand Lodge will take place on Saturday, 18th April at Bradford Grammar School. It goes without saying that Grand and Provincial Grand lodge Officers should attend by way of example but it is also a clear responsibility of all Masters in the Chair to be present with their Wardens and, if possible Brethren; We should also be there supporting our Brethren receiving preferment. Crest Regalia are recommended to provide any of our Regalia needs and will return a discount of 20% to the Festival coffers, see the Provincial Web site for details. As many of you are aware, it will be the Sesquicentenary of the Province on the 7th August 2022. A Jewel order form can be obtained from Lodge Secretaries, and then be collected at the Provincial meeting, and the P.G.M. desires that it should be worn from that moment on, Grand Lodge officers included. Do not forget, we are the Custodians of the Province and it is our responsibility to maintain the Province to deliver the ‘Magic of the Mark’.
W.Bro. Ken had the responsibility of submitting the Toast to his candidate, a family man who began his working life as a Policeman, A period as a National Sales Manager for Nestle followed but he now works educating young people upon the perils of knife crime, a most important duty. Acknowledging his Toast Bro. Brian confirmed that it had been one of the best evenings he had ever enjoyed and he looked forward to seeing the Ceremony again, in March, to take it all on board. Delighted to report that three Masters in the Chair were present, W.Bro. Rod Johnson, Sincerity No.943, he responded to the toast to the visitors,, W.Bro. Fraser McPherson , Prince Edward No. 14 and .W.Bro. Matt Brelsford Aireferry No. 1769, a most regular visitor on the circuit. It would appear that the Corona virus is having an effect upon visitors, important that we all take care in line with the advice from Grand and Provincial Grand Lodges but do not over react.
Another wonderful evening of the ‘Magic of the Mark’.
Worshipful Brother Duncan Smith P.G.S.D.