Brethren of Trafford Park Broad Oak Lodge No 4486 are no strangers to providing surprises to their installation meetings and this year was no different. The officers in the lodge were lacking in numbers due to personal and health reasons which called upon the visitors to step in to ensure the smooth running of the meeting under the direction of Mark Barton PrDGDC.
The principal guest was lodge member Dave Walmsley attending in his official capacity of APrGM accompanied by his successor Eccles Group Chairman Stuart Boyd, Dave being the previous group chairman. Dave was also accompanied by grand officer Tony Edden PJGD and acting Provincial grand officer Dave Marlor PrGStwd.
It is traditional in the Eccles Group for the group chairman to present the representative with a pack of Eccles cakes. On this occasion the roles were reversed when Dave Walmsley was the receiver of the Eccles cakes presented by Stuart Boyd. Stuart also presented Dave with a multi coloured tie covered in Liquorice Allsorts. Apparently, Stuart always gave Dave a pack whenever they were on duty at meetings and this was to remind Dave of the good times.
Formalities completed, it was now down to the business of the installation of David Pugh. David is the present WM and was staying in the chair for a consecutive year. Having opened the lodge and carried out the business, a report came that announced the Provincial Deputy Grand Director of Ceremonies Mark Barton sought admission. Mark then announced that Assistant Provincial Grand Master Dave Walmsley demanded admission. Dave and his entourage entered the lodge in the third degree and were greeted by the WM.
On completion of the salutations, the WM, David Pugh proclaimed himself back into the chair of King Solomon for the ensuing year. The working tools were presented by Patrick Wilkinson in the third, Malcolm White in the second and Patrick Wilkinson in the first. The address to the wardens was given by David Pugh and the address to the brethren of the lodge by Dave Walmsley. David then proclaimed that the ceremony of installation was concluded, which was the cue for Dave Walmsley to rise and offer the best wishes of the PrGM Anthony Harrison and to thank him for taking the chair for the second year in succession.
David responded by thanking Dave and presenting him with cheques in the sum of £500 to Cancer Research, £500 to Salford Dementia Society and £400 the Masonic Charitable Foundation 2021. Dave thanked David and the brethren for the generous donation.
Following the first rising, Dave and his team retired from the lodge in processional form. David continued with the rest of the lodge business before retiring to join the brethren and guests at the festive board.
Following and enjoyable meal and the toasts under way, Dave responded to the toast to the grand officers. Since being appointed APrGM, this was Dave’s first appointment representing not only in the Eccles Group but to his own lodge. Dave referred to his 39 years in the Craft when he was initiated into Broad Oak Lodge No 7239 and subsequently the amalgamation with Trafford Park Lodge No 4486. He said that he had stayed in Freemasonry because he enjoys the support and company and also what it stands for. He fully concurs with the example that the PrGM displays, who also enjoys his Freemasonry to the full, which is clearly demonstrated to all who meet him and is a great example to all Freemasons.
Dave referred to the great work that grand officer Tony Edden carries out and referred to him as a man of many talents and who dedicates his time to Freemasonry and specifically to Swinton Masonic Hall. He wished the lodge well in the forthcoming year and said that the future looks promising with two re-joining members and two prospective initiates in the pipeline.
Dave expressed the wishes of the PrGM that we remain proactive in sending out the right messages about Freemasonry and referred to the wonderful work that the care system carries out. He also expressed that we should concentrate on retention as well as recruitment.
In conclusion, he thanked David Price for providing him with information and ensuring that his attendance went to plan and that he had enjoyed a wonderful evening in the presence of all those in attendance and wished everybody well. He thanked Mark Barton for his work as DC and to Stuart Boyd and Dave Marlor for their support.
The master’s song was eloquently sung by the brethren.