The Provincial Grand Lodge of Mark Master Masons

West Yorkshire

The Provincial Grand Lodge of Mark Master Masons West Yorkshire Golf Tournament

The morning of 5 May 2016 dawned to perfect blue skies, with a warm gentle breeze to herald the 34 Mark Masons of the Province assembled at the Low Laithes Golf Club, near Ossett. They were greeted with coffee and bacon butties on arrival and a course which was in beautiful condition. Unfortunately the very slick greens proved a downfall for some, including the writer of this report.

The day had been organised by W.Bro Graham Bailey in conjunction with W.Bro Alex Steele a member at the Club. The day went without a hitch with a halfway house contributing to the total of over £1,000.00 to be donated to the West Yorkshire Mark Benevolent Fund Festival 2023.

After a few well earned drinks, an excellent two course meal was served, and enjoyed by all, including our Rulers, the Provincial Grand Master, Right Worshipful Brother James Steggles; the Deputy Provincial Grand Master, Worshipful Brother Richard Boswell Puttrell, and the Assistant Provincial Grand Master, Worshipful Brother Dr. Rod Taylor, all of whom had kindly arrived to support the day and present the prizes.

Team winners A

They were awarded as follows:

The Carl Whitehead Trophy for the overall winner: to Bro. Arthur Leach, Danum Lodge No. 398.

The Frank Whitworth Rose Bowl for the Best Past Master to W.Bro. Phil Ireland, Haywra Lodge No. 525.

The P G M Trophy for Best Veteran: to W.Bro. G Wood, St Chad Lodge No. 374.

The Ryburn Trophy for the Best Gross score: to W.Bro. Graham Bailey, Danum Lodge No. 398.

The Jack Senior Cup for the Team Prize, best 3 scores: to Danum Lodge No. 398 (95 pts.) Bro. Arthur Leach. Bro. Mike Bunce, and Bro. Andy Evans.

The John Fox Trophy for Nearest the pin: to W.Bro. Martin Hughes, Legiolium No. 457.

 

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Finally a new Trophy was presented this year by W.Bro Barrie Fothergill in memory of W.Bro David Fisher of St. Chad Lodge, who had been a big supporter of the competition for many years. This was given in respect of the Longest Drive and was won by W.Bro. Phil Ireland of Haywra Lodge No. 525.

The Provincial Grand Master rounded of the proceedings by thanking the organisers, and Low Laithes Golf Club, for making such a wonderful wonderful day.

Next year’s Golf will be held on 4 May, again at Low Laithes Golf Club.

 

Very Worshipful Brother Robert Corfield, P.G.J.O., P.D.P.G.M.

A unique celebration at Dartmouth Lodge of Mark Master Masons no. 545

Those present will most probably never see the like again, 50 year Certificates to two Brethren. The stars of the show, Worshipful Brother Alec Oldham and Worshipful Brother Geoff Haigh, both Past Masters of the Lodge and very committed and conscientious Mark Master Masons. This also coincided with an Escorted Visit to the Lodge by the Assistant Provincial Grand Master, Worshipful Brother Dr. Rod Taylor accompanied by 16 Provincial Grand Lodge Officers of the year.

In total 75 Brethren attended this special event and this follows 52 attending Gothic Lodge of Mark Master Masons No. 1018, for the Installation of W.Bro, John Pease and 52 at Integrity Lodge of Mark Master Masons No. 110 for a visit by the South Yorkshire Association of Installed Masters which included an advancement. Mark Master Masonry is flourishing in West Yorkshire, and long may it continue, but do not forget to support our colleagues and Lodges in the Craft.

DARTMOUTH MAR 16 A

The Worshipful Master, Worshipful Brother Alan Knott began by advising that Worshipful Brother Brian Garside, a Past Master of the Lodge and 55 years a Mark Master Mason had died, after a long illness, aged 89 years.  He was presented with his 50th Certificate by the then Provincial Grand Master, Right Worshipful Brother James Bennett Truswell some 5 years ago when many present today were also there. W.Bro. Brian was a long serving Colne Valley Mason, remembered for his cheery smile and helpful manner, a true Mason who will be greatly missed in the Masonic Hall, Slaithwaite.

The Lodge was opened in due form by the Worshipful Master, Worshipful Brother Alan Knott, the perfect man to have behind the wickets you could say. The usual agenda items fulfilled, a Ballot was then taken for a new member which proved successful, another night to remember coming up for the Brethren of Dartmouth Lodge of Mark Master Masons no. 545. Upon a report the Assistant Provincial Grand Master, Worshipful Brother Dr. Rod Taylor was then admitted accompanied by an Escort of Provincial Grand Lodge Officers of the year. In accordance with custom W.Bro. Knott offered the gavel to the Assistant Provincial Grand Master who then surprised the Brethren with some amazing news. Apparently, many moons ago, a Freemason returned from Australia with a gavel which, at a ceremony he duly offered to a Visitor. To his surprise he found that it had inherited the qualities of a boomerang and immediately returned to the donor, that is exactly what happened to the Gavel at Dartmouth, straight back to W. Bro. Knott.

DARTMOUTH MAR 16 B

The Assistant Provincial Grand Master then took the floor with W.Bro. Geoff Haigh and confirmed that he had joined Colne Valley Craft Lodge No.1645 in 1963 then Dartmouth Mark Lodge No. 545, 2 years later and went through the Chair in 1977. He received his 50th Certificate in craft from the Assistant Provincial Grand Master, Worshipful Brother John Gledhill, well known in the area and a Huddersfield Town Football Club fan. In his working life W.Bro. Geoff owned a Garage business in Linthwaite from 1957 to 1982, the business is still going, testament to the foundation he laid. This was sold, but to keep himself busy he became a postman, finally retiring in 1992. In 2006, he was promoted to Past Provincial Grand Senior Warden on the floor of the Dartmouth Mark Lodge No. 545 by the then Deputy Provincial Grand Master, Very Worshipful Brother Brian Addy, sadly no longer with us. He has fond memories of that night, and V.W.Bro. Brian. As I write, he has just received confirmation of promotion in the Province of Yorkshire West Riding to Past Provincial Grand Sword Bearer. His advice to young Masons…, persevere and make sure you enjoy your Year in the Chair. He was presented with his Grand Lodge Certificate by the Assistant Provincial Grand Master and his Provincial Grand lodge Certificate by W.Bro. Alan Morson.

DARTMOUTH MAR 16 C

W.Bro. Alec then joined W.Bro. Dr. Rod Taylor on the floor and we learned that he had very interesting, in early life, starting work from school at the age of 14. This was at Shaws Music shop in Huddersfield as, in his youth his talent had been noticed by Melody Maker Magazine, this drew him to the attention of Charles Shaw, the proprietor and a local Freemason, and his first job was sealed. This was followed by working for Collinsons in Halifax as a Salesman, the proprietor of which was an Edgar Bates, also a local Freemason. His experience with these Freemasons taught him the virtue of honesty and care for his fellow man which has stood him in good stead throughout his life. Possessing an entrepreneurial instinct, he saw a gap in the market, bought a cash and carry business in Bradford which he expanded, ultimately establishing another Branch in Harrogate. This success allowed him to retire in 1987with sufficient capital to see him to 100, following the stock market crash in 2008, he revised this to 90 and he looks well enough to comfortably pass that marker.

In Freemasonry, he joined Constancy Craft Lodge No. 6359 in 1964 and Dartmouth Lodge of Mark Master Masons No. 545 a year later, achieving the Chair in 2004. When asked why it had taken so long, he responded that he did not do backhanders! He received the Provincial Grand Masters Award in 2012 from the then Provincial Grand Master, Right Worshipful Brother James Bennett Truswell, which he remembers with pride. However we did not stop there as the Assistant Provincial Grand Master promoted him on the floor to Past Provincial Grand Senior Warden and to great acclaim from the Brethren. He now has to buy another apron.

W.Bro. Dr. Rod Taylor then presented W.Bro. Alec with his Grand Lodge Certificate, the Provincial Grand lodge Certificate in the hands of a very proud Inner Guard, Brother Jonathan Fox, the newest member of the Dartmouth Mark Lodge.

DARTMOUTH MAR 16 D

The remaining formalities completed, we adjourned to the Festive Board, Prawn cocktail, Roast beef, Apple pie, cheese and biscuits, perfect. It did not stop there, whilst there were many visitors present, it is more appropriate to talk of Guests having been invited to a party, our Hosts W.Bro. Geoff and W. Bro. Alec, providing all the refreshment. Very many thanks to you both from us all and we sincerely hope that we will have many more years to enjoy your company.

Freemasonry, Mark Master Masonry at it’s very best. Even Slawit looked perfect that night!

 

Smile, be happy, and remember you are all Mark Master Masons.

W.Bro Duncan Smith P.S.G.D.

Escorted Visit – Fearnley Lodge of Mark Master Masons No. 58

Wednesday, 10 December at the Masonic Hall, Mirfield, and our newly Installed Assistant Provincial Grand Master takes his first Official bow. Yes, Worshipful Brother Dr. Rod Taylor P.G.J.D. was present, leading a “posse” of Provincial Grand Lodge Officers, 24 out of a total present of 70 Mark Master Masons, on an Escorted Visit to the Lodge.

The Lodge was opened in due form by the Worshipful Master, Worshipful Brother Brian Page who did create some consternation when initially asking the brethren to “confirm the Minutes of the Convocation”, quick check around the Lodge confirmed the Regalia we were all sporting, and the Minutes of Fearnley Lodge of Mark Master Masons No. 58 were confirmed. Upon a report, the Assistant Provincial Grand Master, together with his Escort, was admitted to generous approbation.

Fearnley 1

The Advancement then followed of Brother Stephen Readhead, a Member of Scarborough Lodge No. 1214. This was very professionally despatched by the Worshipful Master, very ably assisted by his Brethren, notably Brother Garry Burden as Senior Deacon and a special mention for W.Bro. Tony Mackrell for the Signs and Secrets. That said, it is wise not to refer to the Grand lodge of Mark Master Masons suggested Ritual as there are numerous departures. None of these detract from the clarity of the message or the sincerity, but it is different and well worth a visit – put Fearnley in your diary when they next have a candidate. From my perspective, I do not think that I will suggest a visit by the Mark Demonstration Team! The Lodge was closed in due form after hearty greetings were extended by all, during which the oft times Xmas cliché was delivered, ‘The Ceremony was a veritable Christmas Cracker’Fearnley 2

The Festive Board was a credit to the caterers and the Lodge. The Toast to W.Bro. Dr. Rod Taylor and Provincial Grand Lodge of Mark Master Masons of West Yorkshire was warmly proposed by W.Bro. Brian Page. He extended an Invitation to the Assistant Provincial Grand Master and all the Provincial Grand Lodge Officers of the Year to hold their Annual Luncheon again at Mirfield on Sunday, 18 October 2015, to be confirmed. To the surprise and delight of all, but especially Very Worshipful Brother John Fred Clough, Past Assistant Provincial Grand Master, W.Bro. Page presented a gift to V.W. Bro John in recognition of his 6 years of dedication to the Province, a Book entitled ‘Steam and Rail’, something he feels passionately about.

Fearnley 3

The Assistant Provincial Grand Master then responded to the toast, beginning with the comment that he had been told to keep it brief but that he found that very difficult, a chorus of hear hear’s followed. W.Bro. Dr. Rod reminded us that Mark Masonry is characterised by good fellowship, good work and good fun. Visiting is a feature because we so enjoy it and it is part of what keeps us going, how true and long may it continue.

Another excellent Mark Masonic occasion, smile be happy and enjoy your Mark Masonry.

 

W.Bro. D. Smith P.G.S.D., P.Prov.G.J.W.

Thank You

Since the Right Worshipful Provincial Grand Master James Steggles G.M.R.A.C. announced that, on 27 November 2014, he was going to appoint a new Deputy and Assistant Provincial Grand Master. V.W. Bro. Robert Corfield, P.G.J.O. and l, whenever possible, took the opportunity to tell the Brethren of the Province just how much we both appreciated the support given to us during our terms of Office, every single one of you deserves our sincere thanks.

However, there are many whom we were unable to talk to in person and we hope that this short message will convey our regards and thanks, to them and to our friends in other Provinces.

Change is a necessary thing in a busy vibrant Province like ours and we now all have the chance to give that same support to our new Deputy Provincial Grand Master, W.Bro. Richard Puttrell, P.G.S.D. and to our new Assistant Provincial Grand Master W.Bro. Dr Rod Taylor, P.G.J.D. Both Bob and l hope they enjoy the years to come and that they too play their part in taking our Province forward.

Our thanks also go to the Officers and Brethren of all the individual Lodges who made our visits so memorable, not forgetting the Secretariat and D.C. teams for all their help and assistance.

It has been a wonderful journey for both of us and we thank you all for making it possible.

Our very best fraternal regards

V.W.Bro. John F Clough
V.W.Bro. Robert Corfield

A new chapter opens in the life of the Provincial Grand Lodge of Mark Master Masons West Yorkshire

A night to remember for all present at the Especial Meeting of Integrity Lodge of Mark Master Masons No. 110 held, by dispensation, at the Masonic Hall Wetherby on 27 November, but particularly for the Members of Integrity Lodge of Mark master Masons No. 110 and Brighouse Lodge of Mark Master Masons no. 753. This being the fact that the Meeting was held to Install W.Bro. Richard Boswell Puttrell, a member of Integrity Lodge, as the Deputy Provincial Grand Master and W.Bro. Dr. Rod Taylor, a member of Brighouse Lodge, as Assistant Provincial Grand Master.

Integrity 1s

The opening formalities were duly despatched by the Worshipful Master, Worshipful Brother Frank Lefley when, upon a report, the Past Rulers of the Provinces of West Yorkshire and North and East Yorkshire were admitted to appropriate approbation. Upon a further report the Provincial Grand Master, Right Worshipful Brother James Steggles G.M.R.A.C. entered to warm applause, accompanied by an escort of Provincial Grand Lodge officers of the year. R.W.Bro. Steggles then accepted the gavel and the acting Provincial Officers took their respective posts.

Integrity 2s

The Provincial Grand Master began by thanking the retiring Rulers, V.W.Bro. Robert Corfield and V.W.Bro. John Fred Clough. Both had given exemplary service over a number of years and the Province cannot thank them enough for their hard work and dedication. He emphasised that their work had not ended as both were now to be involved in other projects. V.W.Bro. Bob in response said that he had thoroughly enjoyed the experience and looked forward to helping in any way possible in the future.

The appointment of the new Deputy Provincial Grand Master was then announced, an escort was formed and the Deputy Provincial Grand Master Designate was admitted.  The Patent of Appointment was then read by the Provincial Grand Secretary, W.Bro. Alan Oldfield after which the Provincial Grand Master then explained the nature and Duties of the office. The Provincial Grand Chaplain, V.W.Bro. Edward Patnick then offered Prayer.  W.Bro Puttrell was then obligated and invested by the Provincial Grand Master and took his seat in the Lodge. The same procedure then took place for W.Bro. Dr. Rod Taylor, the Assistant Provincial Grand Master Designate who, after being obligated and installed by the Provincial Grand Master took his seat in the Lodge.

R.W. Bro. James Steggles also announced the appointment of W.Bro. John Vause as Provincial Grand Director of Ceremonies and W.Bro. Andrew Brown as Deputy Provincial Grand Director of Ceremonies, both richly merited.

Integrity 4s

 

The remaining items on the Agenda were then dealt with under the guidance of the Worshipful Master, W. Bro. Frank Lefley which included the presentation of a cheque, for £1000 from Integrity Lodge in favour of the West Yorkshire Mark Benevolent Fund Festival 2023, to R.W.Bro. Steggles. Upon receiving the Cheque, he explained that a Committee had now been appointed, under the Chairmanship of the new Deputy Provincial Grand Master, which also included V.W.Bro Bob Corfield – a short retirement period for V.W.Bro Bob then! He also asked that all the Brethren gave thought to the Festival and the fund raising activities, any ideas welcome.  Hearty Greetings having been proposed, the Provincial Grand Master and Past Rulers then retired in procession with an escort of acting Provincial Grand Lodge Officers.

 

Integrity 5s

 

The Festive Board was a veritable six course extravaganza prepared by W.Bro. Bob Sowden, highlighted by a menu card in French prepared by W.Bro. Mike Nowell, Secretary of Integrity Lodge. The Toast to our new Rulers and the rest of the Officers of Provincial Grand Lodge, present and past, was in the safe hands of W.Bro. Ian Storey. He stressed the hard work undertaken by Provincial Grand Lodge Officers and particularly W.Bro. Richard Puttrell and W.Bro. Dr. Rod Taylor. In response the Deputy Provincial Grand Master, Worshipful Brother Richard Puttrell thanked all the Brethren for the support they give to the Province, particularly the Directors of Ceremonies, a group close to his heart. Unfortunately, R.W.Bro. Brian Emmett was unable to attend but had written to him stressing the nature of the Province and pointing out that, ’the Brethren in the Mark degree wished to spend their time there and you must ensure this continues’, how true and perfectly in accord with the thoughts of our Provincial Grand Master.

 

Integrity 6s

 

The Toast to the visitors was proffered by W. Bro. Victor Shaffiee, Past Master of Integrity Lodge. He was delighted to see 88 visitors and trusted that they had thoroughly enjoyed themselves. In glancing around the room he had noticed many happy, smiling faces and much laughter, a superb example of Mark Masonry. W.Bro. Philip Drury, in response, commented upon a wonderful Ceremony in which all who participated could be very proud, together with an excellent Festive Board. He congratulated the new Rulers upon their preferment whilst, at the same time, thanking the previous incumbents for all their dedication and hard work. He felt, as did all the visitors, very privileged to have been present concluding ‘If you have enjoyed it half as much as us, then we have enjoyed it twice as much as you’. W.Bro Philip has a way with words, Ruth Drury will be very proud.

I cannot conclude my deliberations without reporting a very unusual incident. An Order of Proceedings is prepared by the Provincial Grand Secretary, W.Bro. Alan Oldfield, which details the process from the entrance of the Provincial Grand Master and the conclusion of the Appointments. This, as on every other occasion of which I am aware, had been error free in respect of the Ceremonial. Regrettably, the opening page referred to an Especial Meeting of Integrity Lodge of M.M.M. No. 768 not 110, a shock to we members of Integrity, does the Ceremony have to be repeated? Rest easy, No, but will we ever let W. Bro. Alan forget this? – NO Chance

As ever, smile, be happy and enjoy your Mark Masonry, we are a very privileged group.

W.Bro. D. Smith P.G.S.D., P.Prov.G.J.W.