East Kent Provincial 2013 News

Union Lodge 250th

250 Years Old And Still Going Strong

On the 7th November 2013 the Union Lodge No 127 celebrated its 250th anniversary at the Winter Gardens, Margate. While the weather outside was rather bleak, the atmosphere inside was sunny and joyful.

Union Lodge 250th-2The Grand Lodge and Provincial Grand Lodge Representatives with Union Lodge's Worshipful Master

Over 240 Freemasons from around the Province, London and the Home Counties attended the meeting, which was conducted by the Worshipful Master, WBro Jeffrey Tiley. The Provincial Grand Master, Right Worshipful Brother Geoffrey Gordon Dearing, accompanied by the Provincial Grand Wardens and members of the Provincial Executive were received by the Worshipful Master. The United Grand Lodge of England was represented by Very Worshipful Brother Brigadier William E. Shackell, CBE, PPresRMBI, President of the Masonic Samaritan Fund, accompanied by his Director of Ceremonies, Very Worshipful Brother Thomas J Caplin, DepGDC, PGSwdB.

Union Lodge Members

WBro Wendholt provided the Brethren with a brief history of the Union Lodge from its beginnings in 1763, in Spitalfields, London; the move to Margate in 1813 and the events which influenced the lodge’s development over the last 250 years. The Masters or representatives of twelve daughter and granddaughter lodges were invited to stand and acknowledge their close and enduring ties with Union Lodge. The Provincial Grand Chaplain, Worshipful Brother the Reverend Neville Roy Gallagher also gave an excellent oration, which was well received by the Brethren.

The PGM congratulates the banner designer, WBro Richard Smith

Following the lodge history, a banner dedication ceremony was conducted by a team comprising the Worshipful Master and his officers; the Right Worshipful Provincial Grand Master and Provincial Grand Chaplain.WBro Graham Garnsey, PPGSwdB (Sussex), the longest serving member of Union Lodge, carried the banner, accompanied by eight escorts, which included four Past Masters;

two Master Masons; a Fellow Craft and an Entered Apprentice, signifying the continuous and progressive nature of Freemasonry.

Members and guests enjoying the six-course banquet

The banner was designed by WBro Richard Harold Smith PPGSwdB, a member of the Nicholas Ridley Lodge No. 8094, Herne Bay. The design depicted in graphical form the history of the lodge with a distinctive London skyline set above the chalk cliffs of the Kent coast and waves lapping the shoreline. This historic day was concluded with a marvellous six-course banquet, which was thoroughly enjoyed by the Brethren and visitors.

A beautiful crystal claret jug was presented to the Worshipful Master from the members of the Wellington Lodge No. 784, Deal. The Union Lodge No.127 was helped and supported by local lodges and their members, including Wellington Lodge No 784 and Bredenstone Lodge No 8093.

The PGM with the Lodge 250th Committee

The undoubted success of the day was largely due to the many years of planning and preparation by the 250th Committee, whose members included the following Brethren:- WBros Mick Hearn (Chairman); Terry McGlone (Secretary); Vic Voss (Historical Research); Phil Wendholt (Historical Research); Jeff Tiley, Barry Carter; Barry Chamberlain; Jim Mason and Malcolm Pointer. Lodge Secretary W.Bro. Terry McGlone said: “Some of the Lodge’s newest      Members, still in their early twenties, will hopefully attend the 300th anniversary and I am sure that they will recall with great pride that marvellous day which we enjoyed on 7th  November 2013”.