Good morning brethren and welcome.
I thank you all for being with us here today, as I have mentioned, there is another very important meeting within our Order occurring today in Cumberland & Westmoreland, where the Grand Master is Installing a new District Grand Prefect - so the ones we have with us are very valuable…. Thank you guys for supporting us in London and all those who have attended from other Districts – you are very welcome.
Of course especial thanks to Ed Crosby who this day has stood down as District Grand Prefect for Cumberland & Westmoreland – Ed, I have spoken on this earlier but, I cannot tell you how nice it is to have you here in London, because of our date clash we find it impossible to personally support each other so on the first opportunity you have to be here you have done it – brethren I must tell you that Ed has made a weekend of it in London. I question anyone who lets their wife adrift in London – the shops are full of Christmas goodies – such fun !!!! I wish her well……
I am constantly aware of the enormous privilege to hold the office of District Grand Prefect for London and I am conscious of this every time that I visit a council or when I represent you in other Districts. At home our Official Visit programme is very active; indeed, I have completed two in the last month and one next Monday – Council of the Four Kings which will be a good night out and all are welcome.
Before I go too much further, I must thank those who make such an effort to ensure that everything in our District goes smoothly and efficiently.
Our hardworking District Grand Secretary Scott Cargill and the District Assistant Secretary – Richard Criddle, who have worked very hard to make today so successful. Thank you both.
eys our District DC who has such a busy year with visits and ensuring that today is a success – halfway there Roger!!!!
Our District Treasurer – John Baker, I thank you for your hard work and support through the year.
To Dougie Black who has enhanced our meeting with music – all the notes are in there Doug…. and yes in the right order, and to Mark Corcoran our Tyler who has given this District much help and support during the year. thank you.
To Stephen Schofield who ably organises and manages our Official visits and to all those who come along to support our visits even though they have moved on from being Active District Officers, this is most heartening – thank you.
Finally, our secretaries, who keep our Councils enthused and running well and effectively, thank you for your time and effort, only those who have carried out that work know the amount of effort involved. Thank you.
We have a very energetic Communications team who are supported by an excellent website and a number of good and effective social media platforms such as X formerly known as Twitter, Facebook and WhatsApp and these have been used to great effect throughout.
And let me mention our Council of Improvement, it has run on Zoom since the first lockdown and has developed the most brilliant virtual temple and floor movements, Steve Roberts is the creator and host, well done Steve and thank you. Full details are on the website.
Our District is strong and thriving, we have welcomed in several members since September – 4 in to just one Council but even better is that we have strength in every Council, this is so important. We must not however be complacent, and we must take every opportunity to attract Mark Master Masons to come and join us and sample the special qualities and companionship that we have in Allied Masonry.
Some of our new members are with us today. Enjoy your allied Masonry with us in London.
And the happiness barometer is riding high on the social side -
- We enjoyed a good day out at Southwark Cathedral in April – a fabulous tour with lunch afterwards.
- Just last month we had a Zoom lecture by one of the visitor guides at Hampton Court Palace – all about the scandals and lurid stories of the Palace – great fun.
- We held our annual dinner for Secretaries and Treasurers.
- And we enjoyed a jovial dinner for new members which I always find very enjoyable and also instructive – it is interesting to hear why members join and what they expect to get out of it, it definitely influences how we chart the course of the district.
- … and our big news is that we are well on the way to submitting our petition to form a new Council in London – the project name is ‘Universal Council’, is it is based around our successful lockdown Zoom meetings – not that we will meet on Zoom but here in MMH. It is attracting potential members from around the UK and the world so if anyone here fancies belonging to a really diverse group of Allied Masons then let us know afterwards.
And it does not stop there, we have much planned for the coming year.
We have had success at Grand Rank as well,
Colin Howard appointed to Active Grand Inner Guard
First Appointments for -
Brian Chapman and David Major and Past Grand Inner Guard
Julian Trought, Harvey Roland and Stephen Fenton to PGStdB
Congratulations to them and all those across the Order who have been so honoured.
Finally, let me say a huge thank you to the members from London and our guests who have joined with me today, in such good numbers, to celebrate our wonderful Order and its strength and prosperity.
In a few weeks it will be December and the Christmas season will be here again I wish you and your families, most especially at this time, all good wishes, good health and much happiness.
May the Great disposer of all bless you all.