OSM East Lancs

Order of the Secret Monitor Provincial Grand Conclave of East Lancashire

A Champion meeting

Champion Conclave’s latest meeting held at Darwen was very much a Princely affair. The members were set to admit as a Prince one of its latest recruits,however a work commitment was to keep the brother away.  So it was another one of the newest members , Martin Davies who stepped up to act as the candidate in what proved to be a first class demonstration ceremony being worked by the officers and visiting brethren. So it was fitting that Martin’s Grand Conclave Princess degree certificate was on hand ready for Supreme Ruler Paul Joynson to present him with. Stephen Jackson went on to explain the significance of the certificate to Martin.

Neither of the brethren involved will miss out on a real ceremony as Craig Horrigan will now be taking his Princess degree very soon in another Conclave and Martin will soon be taking that very important step in Freemasonry when he is exalted into the Holy Royal Arch in December.

The conclave also presented a cheque to the province of £100 to favour good causes during the meeting following which the brethren retired to a festive board and some very poor jokes and puns all revolving around a previous meal of Chicken.  Truly a night to remember in the ‘smiling degree’.

Martin receives his certificate from Supreme Ruler Paul Joynson (right)

Martin receives his certificate from Supreme Ruler Paul Joynson (right)

A new Supreme Ruler!

Photo by David Geenhalgh

Photo by David Geenhalgh

The Province has its first brand new Supreme Ruler this season, Kenneth Mellor was installed into the chair of Roach Valley Conclave No 252 in a fine ceremony conducted by Frederick Seel and his officers.

Provincial Grand Conclave 2018

The brethren of East Lancashire gathered at Rochdale Masonic hall for the annual Provincial Meeting. They were joined by many distinguished visiting brethren from far and wide including East Scotland, the West Midlands and southern counties. Also from a little nearer over the border from Yorkshire as well as neighbouring West Lancashire.

Once assembled in the superb surroundings of the large lodge room the Provincial Grand Supreme Ruler, Frank Hood Smith accompanied by his Deputy, Chris Givvons and a delegation of the out going officers paraded in. This perfect entrance was under the guidance of Stephen Holcroft who later was appointed as the Provincial Director of Ceremonies. Music is the perfect accompaniment to any procession and this was provided by Rochdale’s very own Stephen Holt, Provincial Grand Organist.

Stephen Holcroft,left with Stephen Holt at the organ

Stephen Holcroft,left with Stephen Holt at the organ

Once assembled, Frank proceed to open Provincial Grand Conclave and welcome everyone to the meeting. The visiting dignitaries were introduced as well as the heads of some of the other masonic orders and greeted with acclamation by the brethren.

Reports were received from the Recorder, Treasurer and The Guide all as part of the business section of the meeting. It was the final report given by Les Bond who was to step down after giving sterling service as Provincial Guide for the last two years. He has martialed his troops in the form of the Visiting Deacons to ensure each meeting was attended by a Visitor which is a vitally important part of the makeup of our order.

Frank then appointed and invested his officers for the year, with a little bit of a ‘geordie’ flavour as Ken Laidlaw (Counsellor) and Allan Shields (Guide) both hail from the same home town of Jarrow on Tyneside.

Provincial Standard Bearer Aiden Murphy, Left with Chris Givvons and Paul Joynson newly appointed Sword Bearer

Provincial Standard Bearer Aiden Murphy, Left with Chris Givvons and Paul Joynson newly appointed Sword Bearer

With all his team in place Frank delivered his report on the Province which is doing well. With new members joining the order and conclaves that were low in numbers now thriving. The hall is very large so a PA system was in use which had been set up by Les Bond, Frank was ‘Miked up’ and had said that he felt a bit like a TV star! The meeting was conducted with sincerity and warmth by Frank and the final Knock from acting Sentinel, Nigel Dunlop signified the closing of another successful meeting of Provincial Grand Conclave.

Paul Joynson ,right being congratulated by Nigel Dunlop

Paul Joynson ,right being congratulated by Nigel Dunlop

Frank Smith (centre) flanked by his acting Officers for 2019

Frank Smith (centre) flanked by his acting Officers for 2019

The brethren now retired to the festive board which was a superb meal of Roast Beef and Apple Crumble for dessert.

Frank was delighted to be able to take wine with his distinguished guests, visitors and his officers. Toasts were made to which Frank in his response thanked all those who had attended. He also thanked his Recorder and Director of Ceremonies by saying’ meetings don’t just happen’ they take much hard work to be as successful as today’s had been

He wished the brethren good health and a safe journey home following what had been a most enjoyable day for all who had attended.

Photos Courtesy of Wayne Barnes

Article by Allan Shields.

A Prince and a Visitor

Mark (right) being congratulated by Sam

Mark (right) being congratulated by Sam

At the recent meeting of Bury Conclave  No 80 Bro Mark Harrison was admitted as a Prince of The order. In  attendance was Capt. Walter David Porter, the Grand Visitor from Grand Conclave along with Frank Smith, Provincial Grand Supreme Ruler, Chris Givvons, his Deputy and a delegation of other Provincial Officers. A total of 28 brethren filled the lodge room at Rawtenstall Masonic Hall to see Bro Mark admitted in a truly excellent ceremony conducted by Sam Turtington, Supreme Ruler of Bury Conclave.

He was ably assisted by his officers and visitors who all worked hard on making the Ceremony memorable and sincere for Mark , the work received praise from Walter who along with all the visitors enjoyed the meeting.

Following the meeting  the brethren enjoyed the harmony and fine food at the festive board. Conclave Director of Ceremonies Dave Rigby conducted a raffle raising £83 for the charities.

David Porter - Grand Visitor (centre) with Sam and Dave

David Porter – Grand Visitor (centre) with Sam and Dave

Over the Hill

Left, Brian Campbell with Installing SR Martin Murray

Left, Brian Campbell with Installing SR Martin Murray

Secret Monitors from the ‘other side of the hill’ or to be geographically correct, The Province of West Yorkshire   descended on James Edward Glover Conclave No 409 for the installation meeting held at Rochdale Masonic Hall. The now established visiting between the two Provinces continued with 13 West Yorkshire visitors including the Deputy Provincial Grand Supreme Ruler, Alan Webster and Michael Bunce the Provincial Recorder.

The Supreme Ruler of Odersfelt Conclave No 35, who are also from West Yorkshire and have established a good visiting relationship with East Lancashire Brethren, who in turn reciprocate, had also made the journey over to see Bro Brian Campbell installed as the Supreme Ruler of JEG Conclave. There were a total of 44 brethren in attendance with the members of JEG conclave with only one absentee due to holidays.

So as not to be too overwhelmed with Yorkshire brethren, Frank Smith, Provincial Grand Supreme ruler for the hosting province, East Lancashire made this a team visit with a delegation of Provincial Officers. The Conclave was opened by outgoing Supreme Ruler Martin Murray. He was alerted to the awaiting delegation formed up outside whom then paraded in under the guidance of Provincial DC Stephen Holcroft. With the members of the team on taking post, the parade in was a spectacular site.

Following a warm welcome and salutations Martin proceeded to install Brian Campbell into the chair. In a superb ceremony, he was assisted by his fellow officers following which Brian was commissioned by Frank Smith. This part of the ceremony is unique to the OSM and in addition to the installation, permits the newly installed Supreme Ruler to occupy the chair of any regularly warranted conclave. Another interesting fact is that the installation ceremony is also the Third Degree of the order along with the presentation of The Weapons, on this occasion presented with sincerity by Stephen Jackson, Past Deputy Supreme Ruler who also acted as conclave DC for the evening. So it was a truly special and memorable ceremony for Brian like many Supreme Rulers before him.

The Brethren of JEG along with all the visitors

The Brethren of JEG along with all the visitors

Brian then proceeded to appoint and invest his officers and Frank Smith delivered the final address to the brethren present.

The late Tom Corbally who had been the Provincial as well as Conclave DC had purchased a ceremonial wand; unfortunately he never got the chance to present it to the conclave. It was a sad moment when Frank gave the wand to Brian who in turn presented it to Terry Bailey who had now taken up office as DC.

As is the custom in James Edward Glover at the end of every meeting, Richard Glover rose to tend the greetings of the widow of James Edward Glover, he was not only one of the founders of the conclave but gave his name to it. There is also an Allied Council named after James Edward Glover – No 137 in the District of East Lancashire.

East meets West. Frank and his Provincial Officers pictured with the party from West Yorkshire

East meets West. Frank and his Provincial Officers pictured with the party from West Yorkshire

The meeting drew to a close and Brian the new Supreme Ruler proudly took his place in the procession alongside Frank, the Provincial team and galaxy of Grand Officers in attendance.

The festive board was relaxed and harmonious as the brethren enjoyed a roast beef dinner prepared and served to the very high standard that Rochdale Masonic Hall always deliver. Frank responded to some of the toasts by thanking the West Yorkshire delegation for coming ‘over the hill’ There was plenty East – West banter at the festive board: all good natured of course!

Fitting then that Alan Webster, the Deputy Provincial Grand Supreme Ruler gave the response to the visitor’s toast proposed by JEG’s Guide, Ken Laidlaw. He offered his congratulations to the Supreme Ruler Brian and brought the good wishes of the Provincial Grand Supreme Ruler for the Province of West Yorkshire. He congratulated all the officers of JEG Council for a superb ceremony.

Terry Bailey then conducted a raffle for good causes who will benefit to the tune of £106. The prize was a bottle of whiskey which found its way into the hands of Steven Holt, the conclave organist.

Stephen Holcroft closed what had been a most enjoyable evening with the Sentinel’s toast. JEG have a candidate waiting in the wings so it looks like a prosperous and busy year is in store for JEG.

The brethren enjoying the festive board and right, Frank and Supreme Ruler, Brian taking wine

The brethren enjoying the festive board and right, Frank and Supreme Ruler, Brian taking wine

Nice summer’s night at Padium

If your Conclave meets in June then it is highly likely it will be a nice sunny affair and that was most certainly the case when Forest of Pendle Conclave No 219 held its installation meeting at Padium on a hot and sunny evening.

Eight members of the Conclave, including Past Grand Supreme Ruler of The Province, RWyBro Howard Nuttall and his Deputy at the time, RWyBro Stephen Jackson, were joined by eight visiting brethren. In fact, it was Stephen who was to be installed into the chair in a superb ceremony by WyBro R Anderson, who has made the installation ceremony his own in Forest of Pendle.

Howard (left) with Supreme Ruler Stephen

Howard (left) with Supreme Ruler Stephen

The dynamic duo of Past Provincial Grand Supreme Ruler and his Deputy were re united at the start of the meeting as Stephen was the Counsellor, Howard stood in at the  last minute and occupied the Guide’s chair.

Howard later went on to address the Brethren to conclude the Ceremony during which Stephen Holcroft, Provincial Director of Ceremonies , presented The Weapons perfectly to Stephen.

Following the meeting the brethren retired to the slightly cooler surroundings of the festive board room to find a mouth-watering buffet awaiting, prepared by the expert chef WyBro David Heginbotham.

The harmony continued through the meal with the usual toasting and a raffle featuring the famous travelling Asda whiskey. It raised another £53 for charities on top of what it has raised in the three other conclaves it has appeared at. David Heginbotham was the lucky winner and it looks like it will be appearing in a Craft lodge in the near future and continue raising money for our charities.

Cockcroft gets the team spirit

Cockcroft Conclave No 25 received a double visit at its latest meeting held on a warm sunny evening at Burnley Masonic Hall. Not only was the Grand Visitor, VWyBro Captian Walter David Porter in attendance but there was also team visit by nine acting East Lancashire Provincial Grand Conclave Officers.

Left to right, Walter David Porter, Chris Givvons and Dave Heginbotham looking after the travelling arrow

Left to right, Walter David Porter, Chris Givvons and Dave Heginbotham looking after the travelling arrow

Supreme Ruler David Heginbotham opened the Conclave in due form after which there was a knock to announce that a delegation of Provincial Officers was waiting outside. They were admitted under the guidance of Steve Holcroft: Provincial Grand Director of Ceremonies. The delegation was headed up by Christian Givvons, Deputy Provincial Grand Supreme Ruler accompanied by the Sword Bearer, Howard Freer and Standard Bearer Aiden Murphy. Other officers included Registrar Arthur Birch, all four Visiting Deacons: Allan Shields, Elliot Moss, Hector McDonald and Gordon Pilkington. Assistant Recorder Erick Bullock and Steward Adrian Hunter completed the delegation entering the Conclave.

In addition to those Provincial officers, also present as members of Cockcroft was Chancellor Stephen Jackson and Provincial Grand Guide Les Bond along with Conclave and Provincial Assistant DC John Kershaw.

The main business of the evening was a demonstration Ceremony of Induction which featured Hector as the candidate and was superbly performed by Les Bond, assisted by the officers of the Conclave. The weapons of the order were presented with sincerity by Michael Boyce and the charge was delivered perfectly by Stephen Jackson.

The newest member of the Conclave, Ivor Emo was presented with his First-Degree Certificate by Chris Givvons who explained all the features of his certificate in fine style.

Finally, before David closed the conclave he was presented with the Travelling Arrow by Howard Freer making its way from Roach Valley Conclave.

The famous bottle of whisky and the six pack of beans

The famous bottle of whisky and the six pack of beans

The brethren retired to enjoy a first-class festive board in the fantastic surroundings of Burnley’s dining room. That now famous bottle of Asda whisky re appeared at the raffle along with a six pack……. of Heinz baked beans!

The Grand Visitor responded during the toasts stating that he had thoroughly enjoyed the evening and that he was looking forward to attending Bury Conclave on September 5th at Rawtenstall.

Will the whisky be there too?

Chris and David , centre, with Walter , members of the conclave and Acting Provincial Officers

Chris and David , centre, with Walter , members of the conclave and Acting Provincial Officers

Kenneth Laidlaw celebrates 50 years in the Royal Arch.

Kenneth Laidlaw, a Past Provincial Assistant Grand Director of Ceremonies of the Province of East Lancashire and a Past Provincial Grand Registrar of the Province of Durham, is a mainstay personality within the Province. A member of many appendant orders, his knowledge of masonry is second to non. In our order Kenneth is the Recorder and a member of Bury Conclave No 80 and is also a member of The Scarlet Cord. He also holds Grand Rank in the OSM.

Ken , left receives his certificate from David Dunn

Ken , left receives his certificate from David Dunn

Tuesday 24thApril 2018 saw the Chapter of Unanimity No.42 celebrate Ken’s Golden Jubilee in the Royal Arch with the area Assistant to the Provincial Grand Principals, David Dunn presiding over proceedings.

As you can imagine, a great many Companions attended to celebrate with Ken. Golden Jubilees in the Royal Arch are rare and special events and this evening was no exception.

The minutes of Ken’s Exaltation which was performed in St Bede Royal Arch Chapter No.1119 in Durham were read. Allan Shields gave the Tribute after which David Dunn, on behalf of the Most Excellent Grand Superintendent, Sir David Trippier, presented Ken with a certificate.

Once the business of the evening was completed the companions attended the Festive Board where that special Royal Arch atmosphere was thick and joyous. Ken was treated to an evening he will never forget and as ever was gracious in the spot light.

Thanks must be given to the Chapter who arranged a magnificent evening, and thanks also to Ken for allowing us all to share his event and celebrate with him.

Ken with the Companions of Chapter of Unanimity No.42

Ken with the Companions of Chapter of Unanimity No.42

Harwood installs Hector

Hector, right is congratulated by Stephen

Hector, right is congratulated by Stephen

WyBro Hector Macdonald ProvGV was installed as Supreme Ruler of Earl of Harwood Conclave No 71 in fine style by Stephen Crowther.  Earl of Harwood is one of our Saturday conclaves and the brethren gathered for a mid morning start on a sunny May morning.  Stephen opened the Conclave under the watchful eye of Tom Gallagher, Director of Ceremonies and  assisted by his officers and visitors.

He then proceeded to install Hector is a very fine ceremony with sincerity. Those present saw a truly professional working of the installation ceremony. It is the second time Hector has taken the chair of Earl of Harwood but he later revealed that it was never his intention to progress to the chair when he joined the order some 18 years ago!

Following the meeting the brethren enjoyed a relaxing drink in the bar area and superb surroundings of Accrington Masonic hall. The festive board was in true Earl of Harwood style – Soup and sandwiches. The soup was extremely tasty the chef had added a manner of ingredients including curry powder. The brethren decided that this recipie should be considered ‘OSM soup’

A raffle took place with a very unique prize, a signed book written by a mountain climbing aquanitence of Hector’s which had been signed by the author. There was also a bottle of whiskey which appears to traveling around more that the Arrow.  Will it appear at the Team Visit to Cockroft Conclave?

Following a most enjoyable meeting and festive board the brethren departed to continue with their week end activities.

Hector is flanked by the officers and brethren following the installation

Hector is flanked by the officers and brethren following the installation

 

A busy 3 days in the order

It was a busy few days for the order in April and it all started one Thursday night with the installation meeting of Champion Conclave No 26 with Paul Joynson being installed in fine style by John Fisher. At the festive board our Provincial Grand Supreme ruler describe the ceremony as being delightful.

Paul Joynson - Supreme Ruler Champion Conclave

Paul Joynson – Supreme Ruler Champion Conclave

Champion is now truly ‘champion’ with some new candidates coming in the brethren enjoyed the excellent food and hospitality of Darwen Masonic Hall and is well worth a visit. Paul has great plans for Champion including inviting non OSM masons along to the festive board to promote the order and encourage membership.

Friday saw the installation meeting of The Past Supreme Ruler’s conclave No 212 at the delightful surroundings of Ashdale Lea in Rawtenstall.

This conclave attracts its membership from those who have been installed into the chair of a conclave and on this occasion Alan Quine was installed in a perfect manner by Steven Smith.It is really a ‘Past Master’s’ conclave for our order it meets twice per year and the September meeting is ladies to dine. A perfect social occasion and worth considering if you are a past Supreme Ruler.

Supreme Ruler Alan Quine, centre, flanked by the officers and brethren of 212

Supreme Ruler Alan Quine, centre, flanked by the officers and brethren of 212

The Wigganers arrive.. Left to right Jack Lyon, Martin Davies, Paul Joynson & Nigel Dunlop

The Wigganers arrive.. Left to right Jack Lyon, Martin Davies, Paul Joynson & Nigel Dunlop

Saturday saw the meeting of Supera Moras conclave No 49 take place at Hyde Masonic Hall. This conclave known as the ‘internet’ conclave has its membership scattered wide and far with a large number who travel from Wigan!

These included Jack Lyon, Martin Davies who was the candidate, Paul Joynson , Nigel Dunlop, and Allan Shields who was on camera duties that day. They had arrived to find the hall in its lovely grounds bathed in sunshine and were greeted with coffee served in the bar.

Bryan, left with the candidate Martin

Bryan, left with the candidate Martin

Martin was admitted as a Prince of the order in a ceremony conducted by Bryan Tynan, the Supreme Ruler of Supera Moras Conclave. It was a fine ceremony indeed and afterwards Martin mentioned how much he is enjoying being a member of the order. Following the meeting the brethren enjoyed a superb three course lunch consisting of pate, fish or roast beef main course, followed by one of the largest meringue tarts you are likely to see. This was served in a light and airy dining room – everyone enjoyed the sumptuous surroundings they found themselves in.

Officers and brethren of Supera Moras in the dining room at Hyde masonic hall

Officers and brethren of Supera Moras in the dining room at Hyde masonic hall

 

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