East Kent Provincial 2013 News

St Augustine Lodge's 150th

The St Augustine Lodge No. 972 celebrated its 150th anniversary in style at Canterbury on the 4th November in front of a packed audience of guests and visitors. Among those present were the Provincial Grand Master, RW Bro Geoffrey Dearing, the Deputy PGM VW Bro Roger Odd, other members of the Provincial Executive, Masters of other Lodges and other distinguished guests. They were treated to a demonstration of a Masonic meeting dating back to 1863.

 St Augustine 150p2-25 WLMembers, guests and visitors at St Augustine Lodge's 150th

With members of the Lodge donning top hats and tails, and being suitably coiffured for the occasion, the meeting recounted an Emergency Meeting held prior to the Lodge Consecration.

St Augustine 150-134 WSMembers gather in costume before the meeting 

The Worshipful Master, WBro Jim Flower, led proceedings with WBro Robin Masters providing a running commentary of the agenda.

St Augustine 150-72 WSWBro Jim Flower presides over the demonstration

During the meeting the Warrant of the Lodge was read by the Secretary, WBro Howard Griffin.

St Augustine 150-49 WSThe Secretary, WBro Howard Griffin addresses the meeting

The more observant guests and visitors will have noticed that the Warrant was issued to the Lodge No 1274 and not 972; the lodge numbers being reassigned between the granting of the Warrant and the Lodge Consecration.

Lodge member in costumeBro Eric Rhodes-Molden with the Lodge's original Bible dating back to 1863

The ceremony involved many members of the Lodge, including the latest student members initiated as recently as October.

 Lodge members in costumeSenior Warden WBro Gordon Holter with other lodge members

After the meeting a Grand Banquet was held in the style of the period with singing and presentation of gifts. The gifts included an anniversary booklet and homebrewed beer in recognition of the lodge’s first Worshipful Master, WBro Alfred Cooley, a publican and wholesale beer and wine merchant. At the end of the evening WBro Jim Flower had great pleasure in presenting a cheque for £1863 to the Provincial Grand Master as a donation from the Lodge towards the Grand Charity 2014 Festival.

 St Augustine 150p2-30 WSThe Grand Banquet

Everyone attending the evening agreed that the meeting and dinner was a fitting and proper way to mark St Augustine Lodge's first 150 years. With the University Scheme well and truly embedded in the Lodge, its members look forward to the next 150 years.