Other than the Installation meeting of my ‘adopted’ Mark Lodge, Wycoller Lodge of Mark Master Masons at Colne, when I installed my successor into the Chair of Adoniram, and a couple of very enjoyable trips away with Mrs B, there was little to report in August.
September, by contrast, was a very busy month, both Masonically and Socially.
Week commencing 3rd September found Mrs B in Budapest for the International Board Meeting of Soroptimist International and me ‘home alone’, albeit with a full Masonic diary. On 4th September we held a very productive meeting and dinner at Ashday Lea with the members of the Higher Degrees in the District of North East Lancashire. The following day a short train ride took me to Chorley for a meeting of St. George’s Council of the Royal and Select Masters, followed by a quick dash home after lunch for a change of tie, cuff links and regalia in readiness for a visit to Hargreaves Lodge of Royal Ark Mariners at Padiham that evening.
On Thursday 5th September I was admitted as a joining member of County Palatine Conclave of the Red Cross of Constantine at Ashday Lea.
On Friday afternoon, I was on my travels to Manchester for the Installation meeting of the East Lancashire Provincial Grand Stewards’ Lodge of Mark Master Masons at Bridge Street, with an overnight stay at the Travelodge on Blackfriars Bridge in order to catch an early morning train to York for the Annual Meeting of the District of Yorkshire North and East Ridings. A fantastic turnout of Past, Present and Future Inspectors General and senior members of other Orders (including the current and immediate past PGM/MEGS and the Mark PGM) to support V∴Ill∴Bro Mike Graham 33° on his retirement after 10 years as Inspector General for the District of Yorkshire North and East Ridings.
The following week I set off on the first of two trips to London for the quarterly meetings of Grand Mark Lodge on Tuesday and UGLE on Wednesday. Back home on Thursday in time for the White Stone Mark Lodge Installation meeting at Bridge Street on Friday and the Mark Festival Banquet at Middleton on Saturday.
On Monday 17th September, I was back in London for the Higher Degrees meeting at Duke Street St. James’s when 4 members of the North East Lancashire District received promotion to the 30th degree (see separate article here). Back to the North on Tuesday for Brierfield Lodge, the fist time I have been able to attend my mother Lodge for almost 12 months.
Lastly, but by no means least, I was back in Manchester on Friday 21st September for the Enthronement meeting of Donald Maitland Davies Chapter Rose Croix, when I was appointed First General. MWS next year? Maybe, maybe not as I will still be in the Chair of East Lancashire Chapter No.440 so a Supreme Council dispensation will be required.
The rest of the month was spent on a much needed holiday in Cornwall – via Worcester on the way down and via Pattingham (near Wolverhampton) on the way back for Soroptimist Charter events. I can certainly recommend the Lugger Hotel in Portloe – a charming location with plenty of coastal and inland walks, some excellent food and drink and only the gentle sound of the waves lapping against the shore to lull our tired but happy bodies to sleep.