Page 1

Audenshaw District Newsletter Spring 2014

In the edition: An interview with our APGM Updates on the 2015 Festival Joint Convocation 50th Years in Freemasonry 150 year old Lodge celebration Mentoring District Diary Plus much more

Follow us: Tweeter: @pglel or visit Subscribe to this newsletter on line at

Editorial Welcome Brethren and Companions, to the Spring 2014 edition of the Audenshaw District Newsletter. Over the last year Audenshaw District has seen some surprising announcements and changes like VWBro Stephen Blank, taking up the role of APGM for Manchester District and our very own District Chairman being appointed as APGM for Southern Area. We have also seen EComp Norman Clarke stand down after 5 years as our Assistant to the Provincial Grand Principals. The whole of Audenshaw District I am sure will join me in congratulating Norman on his Royal Arch achievements in Audenshaw District and we will miss him in that role, but we will look forward to his company in the near future at our convocations. The Audenshaw District team has continued to be busy attending Lodge Installations, Special occasions such as Personal 50th Celebrations and Lodges celebrating 150 years of brotherly love and harmony, and much more. Personal 50th Celebrations are always moving ceremonies and never more so than when a Brother is such a personality that you cannot help yourself but to admire and enjoy their company, stories and view of life through their eyes. Enjoy reading this edition and remember please send any points of interest to me via or leave in the pigeon whole at Stanley House and I will do my best to include them in the Newsletter or monthly news sheets. Sincere and fraternal regards, WBro Lee Marsh District Communications Officer

What will you find in this Spring 2014 Edition: • • • • • • • •

An interview with our APGM Updates on the 2015 Festival Joint Convocation 50th Years in Freemasonry 150 year old Lodge celebration Mentoring District Diary Plus much more

With just under 40 Lodges and Chapters, there is no way we can get round to contacting them all for news items, so we ask that you send them to us ideally with photographs (please get permission from those in the photo), as they really make the articles much more appealing to readers. As ever, please continue to send in your material to

Audenshaw District Team Chairman – Gerry Hodson; Deputy Chairman – Paul Waring; Secretary – Michael Porter; Charity Steward and Festival Representative – Nigel Johnson; Mentor – Raymond Charlton; DORA’s – William Wootton and Tony Freemont; Communications Officer – Lee Marsh

Grand recognition for Brothers in Southern Area Southern Area has once again been blessed with further Grand Lodge appointments and promotions, with two most worthy Brothers receiving their new Grand Rank at the Investiture meeting of the United Grand Lodge of England at Freemason Hall, London, which will be held on Wednesday 30th April. Our Assistant Provincial Grand Master, WBro John Pearson PAGReg will be promoted to the rank of Past Senior Grand Deacon. At the same meeting, the District Chairman of Ashton & Mossley District, WBro Ken Hampson PProvJGW, will be appointed to the rank of Past Assistant Grand Director of Ceremonies. With both John and Ken being extremely well known and highly regarded Freemasons in Southern Area, the Freemasons of Audenshaw pass on their most sincere and fraternal congratulations. They both put an enormous amount of time into Masonry and have many friends within our fraternity and particularly in Audenshaw District. WBro John Pearson was initiated into Westholme Lodge 9101 on 9th November 1988, so is currently in his 26th year in Freemasonry. He was installed in the Chair of Westholme Lodge in 1995. He was exalted into Pennine Chapter 8798 in 1992 and was installed as 1st Principal in 1998. He is a founder member of Waverley Chapter No 1322 and has served that Chapter in the office of 1st Principal. He is a member of several Mark Lodges and is a member of University of Manchester RAM 1001. He tells me that his 2 claims to fame are, “first that I was President of the Board of Mark Grand Stewards and proposed the toast to the Pro Grand Master in the Connaught rooms in London following the Investiture meeting; and secondly that I won the Mark Golfing Society wooden spoon for 3 years on the trot before I gave up to let someone else win it.” John is also a member of both the Rose Croix and the Allied Degrees. Outside Freemasonry, John was a member of Saddleworth Round Table 558 from 1978 until he was obliged to leave at the age of 40. Whilst he was in the Round Table he served as Area Chairman for South East Lancashire before becoming a member of the National Executive of the Round Table of Great Britain and Ireland. John served as District Chairman of Audenshaw District from March 2009 until 21st November 2013 when he was Invested as the Assistant Provincial Grand Master for the Southern Area. I asked him what he did before becoming District Chairman, to which he replied, with customary modesty, “I behaved disgracefully.” John is “blissfully married” to Denise and together they have three, “gorgeous daughters.” In his spare time John enjoys fell walking, bird watching and gardening. “When I was younger I enjoyed playing all kinds of sport – football, rugby, cricket, tennis, squash but my sporting activity now is confined to lending much needed support to Oldham Athletic.” Finally, John was, and still is, a very successful solicitor, becoming, in 1975, the third generation of his family to become a Partner in his family firm.

WBro Ken Hampson is not so very different in many ways. In June of this year he will celebrate 25 years in Freemasonry, so he joined a Mossley Lodge just seven months after John Pearson did, and of course both had very successful careers in the Law. Ken Hampson was initiated into Mossley Lodge 6577 in June 1989, being installed in the Chair in March 1999. He was exalted into Three Shires Chapter 9397 in December 1993, being the joint first candidate to join the Chapter after its consecration. He has served as 1st Principal of his chapter on two occasions in 2002 and 2006. He is also a member of Three Shires Lodge 9397, Prince Alfred Chapter and Denton Lodge which he was instrumental in saving from closure. Ken became Secretary of Mossley Lodge in March 1991 and is still going strong. He has been Scribe E of Prince Alfred Chapter since joining and was Scribe E of Three Shires Chapter for 12 years, only retiring this year. Ken is a member of three Provincial Lodges and is also a member of the Mark, RAM, Rose Croix, Red Cross of Constantine and the Allied Degrees. He is currently serving on the ELMC Young Persons Committee and has been a member of the Westholme Scottish Association for 20 years. He has served on the Hall Committee of Westholme for 16 years, 4 as Deputy Chairman and three as Chair. He was appointed District Secretary in 2003 and served in that role for three and a half years before becoming Deputy Chairman for five years and Chairman for the last three. Outside of Freemasonry (though I remain far from convinced that there is any such place for Ken) he has been very happily married to Karen for the last 29 years. Together they have two daughters who are both in their twenties and are delighted to have a grandson and a granddaughter who Ken informs me are “GREAT!” He makes no secret of the fact that he is the devoted follower of a certain local football club, the one that plays in blue and is somewhat larger than Oldham Athletic. Ken was a serving policeman for a number of years, rising to the rank of Inspector.

Congratulations to John and Ken on their new Grand Rank, well deserved. The Brethren of Audenshaw wish them every success for the future.

Festival 2015

Spring 2014 Update

As I sit here writing this Festival update on this spring morning, with blue skies that freshness in the wind which still has a chill and the hustle and bustle of the wildlife and plants preparing for fresh starts I am reminded that we still have many Freemasons and their dependants struggling as they no longer have that spring in their step they once had. As Freemasons I am reminded of our obligation to help a Brother who may find themselves in time of difficultly. Growing old is our constant companion in life and in 1842 this constant was realised with a permanent masonic charity of the RMBI being set up to help aging Freemasons and their dependants. For over 160 years it has through the generosity of Freemasons both individually and via lodges/chapters been able to provide and improve the services it offers to our Fraternity. Within Audenshaw District we know we have some generous Freemasons, we know we have some great fund raiser Freemasons, we know we have caring Freemasons, and all Freemasons within Audenshaw District can feel a since of pride that their donations to the 2015 Festival is going to such a worthy cause; cause that many may have to use in the not to distant future. We congratulate all Lodges and Chapters who have donated to the 2015 Festival, however there are three Lodges in particular which have already raised a significant amount towards the 2015 Festival and continue to drive forward raising money for the RMBI they are: • Fraternity Lodge No. 4315 • Parnassus Lodge No. 7869 • Gorton Lodge No.7657

Since our Winter newsletter we have seen a further 2% improvement in the number of festival stewards in our District. Currently 20% of Freemasons in Audenshaw District are not yet Stewards, are you able to help the Festival further by becoming a Steward.

The tremendous effort of Fraternity Lodge has meant it has achieved the current average of £402.79 per Brother in the lodge. All the Brethren of Fraternity Lodge should be immensely proud of this achievement, which can only stand as an example to the rest of us, to reflect and if possible as individuals or as a Lodge/Chapter are able to give a little extra to help this very worthy Masonic Charity – The RMBI. Congratulations to Alexandra Lodge, like a growing number of Audenshaw District Lodges it has received a special recognition certificate from the Provincial Grand Master, via our APGM’s, as every Brother of the Lodge had personally donated to the RMBI 2015 Festival.

Within Audenshaw District we currently have over 100 Freemasons who are not yet Stewards of the 2015 Festival, if every Audenshaw Freemason was to become a Steward of the Festival in our District this would equate to approximately £10,000 for the RMBI via our 2015 Festival.

Total Raised in East Lancashire to date: £ 1,716,835.47

Total Raised by Audenshaw Freemasons to date: £ 102,817.93

50 years a Freemason what a demonstration! Spending 50 years in an organisation is no small thing; it truly is a galactic milestone, or in WBro William Cavanagh PProvSGW view as a keen golfer, the longest drive. For those of us that have met WBro Cavanagh with his imposing voice, mischievous smile and great personality you can clearly see why he sits in the affections of all who meet him.

On Wednesday 5th February 2014 a meeting of Trinity Lodge No 5651 was held at Stanley House Audenshaw to celebrate the 50th Anniversary in Freemasonry of WBro William Cavanagh PProvSGW. Following the opening of the Lodge WBro John Pearson PAGReg the Assistant Provincial Grand Master was received into the Lodge, accompanied by a District delegation. WBro Joseph Quinn, Worshipful Master, offered the gavel which WBro Pearson accepted and introduced the members of the delegation. WBro David R Sellers PAGDC was invited to deliver a tribute to WBro Cavanagh which was full of life and key milestones of WBro Cavanagh’s early years, National Service and business career.

The Assistant Provincial Grand Master invited the Lodge Secretary WBro Brian Ratcliffe PProvAGDC to read the minutes of the meeting of Reddish Lodge no 2315 held on 5th December 1963, the date of the Initiation of WBro Cavanagh. On the day WBro Cavanagh was initiated a boy was born who was later to be known as Eddie the Eagle. Eddie’s life was to go downhill after that but Bill’s life has been on the up all the way until he was sacked by his own son. Also on that day the Beatles brought out their first Christmas album “With the Beatles” and a section of the M6 motorway was opened between Warrington and Preston.

WBro Cavanagh became a member of the Chapter Demonstration team delivering 2 papers entitled “Whence is the word derived?” and “The secret Hiram Abiff took to his grave after he was murdered”. His son took over the team and sacked him again. Following the collection the Assistant Provincial Grand Master and the District delegation retired accompanied by WBro Cavanagh. After the conclusion of the meeting all the brethren enjoyed an excellent Social Board during which WBro John Cavanagh proposed a most amusing toast to his father, to which father replied in suitably disparaging terms.

Sesquicentennial Celebration for Alexandra Lodge History tells us that most fraternal societies existing for only a short span of 20 to 45 years, it highlights the achievement and effect Freemasonry has on our lives, our Communities and Society at large when we can celebrate 150 years of a Lodge. In 1863 Alexandra Lodge No. 993 which now meets at Stanley House, Audenshaw was Consecrated on the 19th December, eight months after Princess Alexandra, the eldest daughter of King Christian IX of Denmark married the Prince of Wales at Windsor. Like Freemasonry in general Princess Alexandra displayed deep interest in philanthropic institutions such as community hospitals and securing funds for widows and orphans. Princess Alexandra granted permission to the founder members of Alexandra Lodge to be named after her and to this day the Lodge displays her portrait on its summons and other official correspondence. Arriving at the Sesquicentennial meeting brethren were stuck by a wave of enthusiasm, dedication and excitement. The Lodge display table and screen with past minutes books, brasses, photos, jewels and much more sent the 150 years of history oozing into this celebration evening. For those who have heard the ‘Masters Song’, and have ever wondered where it came from, well Alexandra Lodge No.993 has the answer. The organist of the lodge Bro. John Morgan Bentley presented and dedicated the song at their April meeting in 1866 to Alexandra Lodge entitled ‘Here’s to his health in a song’ since then the title has gone through several changes before becoming known and sung at many installation social boards throughout Freemasonry as the ‘Masters Song’. At the death of His Majesty King Edward VII in May 1910, Alexandra Lodge sent a telegram to Her Most Gracious Majesty The Queen which expressed the heartfelt sympathy of the members of Alexandra Lodge. Even today we can imagine the surprise at receiving a response, especially so quickly, can you imagine the pride and honour the Brethren of Alexandra Lodge must have felt when they received on the 9th May 1910 a telegram saying ‘Queen Alexandra sends her sincere thanks for your kind expression of sympathy in her sorrow’.

Alexandra Lodge’s Sesquicentennial meeting was held at Stanley House with the Deputy Provincial Grand Master VWBro Derek Thronhill together with our very own Assistant Provincial Grand Master WBro John Pearson. During the meeting to celebrate 150 years of Alexandra Lodge there was great joy, pride and humour, no more than between the DepPGM and WBro Mike Wignall who had both been busy researching 1863 on the internet, luckily with different outcomes. The lodge meeting was concluded with an additional surprise and celebration when the DepPGM on behalf of the PGM promoted WBro Brian Wignall the current DC of Alexandra Lodge for his services and dedication to Freemasonry. WBro Wignall was initiated in the lodge on the 11th May 1973 by his father, and it was in this year that the lodge discussed the possibility of moving their lodge meetings to Stanley House, Audenshaw. Alexandra Lodge has always been keen supporters of charity, and during this 150 year anniversary celebration presented cheques totalling £1200 pounds to the 2015 Festival in aid of the RMBI. The special feeling of the evening continued after the lodge meeting at the social board, with a great deal of thought and planning in regards to the table decoration and display table and screen celebrating this most grand of achievements. Alexandra Lodge can be held as a beacon to Freemasons everywhere, for out of the hundred or so fraternal organisations that existed in 1863 in the local Manchester area only one has survived, Freemasonry, and reading through the old minutes and their 150th Anniversary booklet it helps to reassure us all that Freemasonry has its place in our world, in our communities and has value to men in our time and age. Congratulations to Alexandra Lodge, for its past, current and future achievements.

Royal Arch Masonry Joint Convocation Flying the Banners Joint Convocations have become a regular occurrence throughout English Freemasonry in the last 10 years. For those who have attended they are found to be a great source of not only enjoyment but also a source of masonic knowledge. More than eighty companions of the Royal Arch came together at Southern Area’s recent Joint Convocation at Three Shires Chapter No. 9397 to celebrate all that is good in our Order. Masonry engaging and energising Companions from across Southern Area took part in a special piece of ritual called “The Royal Arch Banners” describing each of the 12 Ensigns and four Banners, the quality of the work done by the 18 Companions involved in delivering this piece was of an exceedingly high standard, a fact that was commented upon by the principal guest at the evening’s convocation. It addition to delivering an excellent piece of masonic knowledge on the Chapter banners the Joint Convocations also included the presentation of the rarely heard Opening Address as well as the more commonly heard Valedictory, which many of the Companions hadn’t heard before and many of the Excellent Companions hadn’t heard for some time. Masonic knowledge at its best This joint convocation also gave Southern Area the opportunity to celebrate the achievements of our EComp Norman Clarke PGStB, the Assistant to the Provincial Grand Principals, who will be standing down after five years of continual improvement of Royal Arch in Southern Area, Norman will be greatly missed as APGP. It was just like Norman to take a very active part in the evening’s proceedings as First Principal and “Ringmaster” for the ceremony. There is nothing strange about that. APGP Master Class The Deputy Grand Superintendent, EComp William Porter, addressed the Companions expressing “this has been a very special night. Seeing so many gifted ritualists working together to produce so splendid a piece of work made me realise how rich Southern Area is.” In his response, EComp Norman Clarke began by thanking the First Principal of Three Shires Chapter. “I was greatly honoured that you allowed me to take the meeting tonight. I would especially like to thank all of those who took part and made this such a splendid meeting. Finally, I would like to thank all of the Companions who have supported me in my years as your APGP.”

Updated website for Masonic Mentors. One of the consistent messages from the rulers in Freemasonry is that it is right to explain to a brother what he has joined and to help him enjoy his masonry so that he wants to contribute to its future. The logical result from this is that, not only will he feel involved in the life of his Lodge or Chapter, but he will feel confident to discuss Freemasonry with his family and friends. This website provides a huge amount of material which is a valuable resource for any mentor and I am grateful to those brethren who have given the product of their work freely for the benefit of others. The content is continually being added to as new work is being added, which proves that mentoring is a dynamic process throughout the Craft. We must not forget, however, that the essence of mentoring is a one to one relationship between the mentor and the candidate. The Oxford Dictionary defines a mentor as “An inexperienced person’s advisor”, the idea is that the new member is shown the ropes and becomes involved in the work and life of the Lodge. The object of this library, and of all the schemes, is to provide support to these Mentors so that if they do not know all the answers they have a point of reference where they can find them. I am very keen that every Master Mason should be encouraged to complete his Third Degree by being Exalted into the Royal Arch. You will therefore find that information regarding the Royal Arch and ideas as to how the Master Mason can be introduced to it will be added to this Library, as well as suggestions as to how to Mentor him once he has joined.

M W Pro Grand Master Check out the new website by UGLE.

Finally I would like to thank all of you who have taken on the responsibility of looking after and mentoring our new members. It is key to the future of the Craft and I wish you success in your work. Peter Lowndes

Nearly 3000 online reads of our Newsletter! With nearly 3000 reads of our district newsletters online, 365 specifically for our Winter 2013 edition, we are seeing some interesting results. As you might expect most of your readers are UK based, but 10% of those reading our district newsletter are from other Grand Lodge jurisdictions including USA, Mainland Europe, South East Asia and Latin America.

We see a range of reading times with a common range between 4 minute and 12 minutes, So if you have 10 minutes the next time your on your computer or smart phone, why not have a read of our District Newsletter at

Masonic Humour The man had just passed the medical for the army. “You can’t take me,” he protested, “I wear glasses.” “That’s all right,” said the medical officer, “we’ll put you right at the front so you don’t miss anything.”

A thirty ghost strolled into a pub and asked for a glass of whisky. “Sorry, sir,” stammered the frightened barman, “we don’t serve spirits here.”

A fellow went to join the Navy. “Can you swim?” said the recruiter. “Why, haven’t you got any ship[s?” replied the cheeky recruit.

Fellowship Diary 2014

RMBI 2015 Festival

Fashion Show

23rd April A visit to the antique and collectors fair By Betty Hayhurst 28th May Down-forget-not-lane Part 3 By Brian Hallworth 2nd July Annual Trip to York 24th September The lighter side of hotel security By Jack Turnbull 22nd October Gentle trecking in the Annapurna’s By Kathleen Potts 26th November Life as an Airport Chaplain By George Lane 10th December Christmas Lunch

The Fellowship is an organisation for Senior Citizens with connections at Stanley House. This includes wives, widows, close friends and those who have taken early retirement. The meetings are held on the fourth Wednesday of the months shown above, at Stanley House, Audenshaw commencing at 2-00 pm.

Fashion Show & Sale Company back by popular demand The Fashion Show is in aid of the RMBI 2015 Festival and is taking place at Stanley House, Audenshaw on Tuesday 20th May 2014

With fashions from all the top brands such as Next, Wallis, M&S, Hobbs and many more, all up to 70% discount PLUS The Pink Butterfly Boutique providing the perfect accessories; shoes, handbags, purses, scarves & jewellery – all discounted.

up to 70% discount

Plus many more brands The Fashion Show Starts at 7.30pm on Tuesday 20th May 2014 at Stanley House, Audenshaw Tickets are £5 and are available from Shirley Charlton

Please send a cheque made payable to Shirley Charlton and include an SAE for tickets to: Shirley Charlton 301 Sandy Lane Droylsden Manchester Contact No: 0772 9277781 M43 7JU

We look forward to seeing you there!’

Audenshaw District Diary 2014 (updated April) Date

Lodge / Chapter



Tuesday 1st April 2014

Alphin Lodge at Westholme

Hosting the Prestonian Lecture

Lodge Secretary

Thursday 3rd April 2014

Southern Area

District Meeting. Royal Arch Provincial Mentor Brendan Harte attending

District Secretary

Friday 4th April 2014

Southern Area

Charity Giving Night at Ashton Masonic Hall (7 for 7:30pm)

District Charity Steward

Thursday 17th April 2014

Ardwick Lodge No. 2185

Personal 50th Celebration for WBro Ray Wallace

Lodge Secretary

Saturday 10th May 2014

Audenshaw District

Masters and First Principles Dinner, at Stanley House

District Secretary

Monday 19th May 2014

Southern Area

RMBI 2015 Festival Roadshow

Nigel Johnson

Tuesday 20th May 2014

Audenshaw District

Fashion Show with up to 70% discount on Brands Tickets ÂŁ5

Shirley Charlton 07729 277 781

Wednesday 11th June 2014

Southern Area

UGLE Trip to London

John Pearson

Sunday 13th July 2014

East Lancashire Provincial Event

2015 Festival Walk and BBQ

Nigel Johnson

Wednesday 17th September 2014

Delphi Lodge No. 9061

Installation - APGM attending

Lodge Secretary

Wednesday 1st October 2014

Trinity Lodge No. 5651

Personal 50th Celebration APGM attending

Lodge Secretary

Friday 3rd October 2014

Audenshaw District

Friends & Companions Evening

Nigel Johnson

Saturday 4th October2014

Dene Head Lodge No. 7594

Installation - APGM attending

Lodge Secretary

Wednesday 8th October 2014

Gorton Lodge No. 7657

Installation - APGM Attending

Lodge Secretary

Monday 13th October

Court Lodge No. 8896

APGM Visit

Lodge Secretary

Follow us: Twitter: @pglel; or visit:

Audenshaw District Newsletter - Spring 2014  
Audenshaw District Newsletter - Spring 2014