What a wonderful evening at Newport Masonic Hall last Saturday. Our current Provincial Grand Master enjoyed the company of almost 100 to celebrate his tenure of our Province. All Lodges were represented and the evening was a very casual and enjoyable event. Our congratulations must go to the retiring PGM for his outstanding representation of the Province for over 10 years.
A superb meal was enjoyed by all and much socialising was enjoyed both at the bar and in the dining room, a truly enjoyable evening. It’s a pity it was almost a ‘leaving’ party. The Rev. Malcolm C. G. Lane has been an exemplary PGM and I feel sure the members of the Province wish him well for his future, Masonic or otherwise.
I would like to thank W. Bro. Tony Charles of the Casnewydd Lodge for taking several photographs throughout the evening of which I have posted a few. (that’s me carrying the wine for the Jasper Tudor table).
Loyal Monmouth Lodge newest member Bro. Kevin Smith ran the Severn Bridge Half Marathon on Sunday 28th August 2016 . He raised £600 for The Monmouthshire Masonic Trust Fund 1997. Congratulations to Kevin for his hard work and training to do the marathon and raising his sponsorship money for charity.
Glyn Williams of Striguil lodge and Paul Burley of Roderick Hill, accompanied by four friends and two support friends have just completed a 400 mile cycle ride in four days for Boboth children’s therapy centre based in Cardiff. The idea was started back in early 2016. It was at a lodge dinner at Glyn explained to Paul his ambition of embarking on a charity ride to raise funds for Bobath who supported his great grand niece. While the challenge was fully explained he neglected to let people know that this would involve over 2000 miles of training riding in preparation for this extraordinary challenge!
After weeks and months of training and preparation the event soon caught up with us and before we knew it we were heading down to Fishguard on 31st August ready to start our epic journey from the 1st to 4 September.
Day one started with the back wheel in the Irish Sea in Fishguard before we headed on a huge climb out to Fishguard at the start of day one. The day was warm and dry and the route took us through some staggering countryside with breathtaking scenery of the Welsh hills and coast. After just over 100 miles we arrived in Bridgend for a first night stay, although sore, happy with our first days achievement.
When we work on the second day the weather was not so kind, there was light drizzle in the air we had a rather damp start. Or spirits were soon lifted however, for after a short ride we arrived at the Bobath children’s therapy centre where we were met by some of the children parents and staff with a warm cup of tea and a few chocolate treats. We couldn’t stay long however this time was against us and we had 100 miles to achieve this day. Our spirits were further lifted, for as we arrived in Chepstow our partners, friends and family were there with a huge welcome as we stopped at the Beaufort hotel for a light lunch they kindly provided as part of their support of this event. After a quick lunch we said our goodbyes and headed for our destination in Marlborough. We crossed the Severn Bridge in fairly light winds with the good pace to the ride, but it wasn’t long before you as are climbing out of Chipping Sodbury on the hill zapped a lot of energy from all of us. It was on to Castle Combe, Chippenham and then out to Marlborough by the Calne Road.
After a warm welcome from all those we met including some generous support from those residing at our hotel we bedded down for the evening a little achy but still in good spirits. The weather on day three was warm with some sun but we are conscious rain was coming in from the west we had to make good haste to stay ahead of the rain. This was probably the flattest and fastest day of the four day challenge and it wasn’t long before we arrived at Ramsgate, with our accommodation being located at the top of Ramsgate Hill, a 1 mile 20% climb that In the rain zapped the last ounce of energy from all of us. You can imagine our anger is when we arrived at our accommodation we were told they had cancelled our booking in preference to a wedding without notifying us. Feeling very down we headed to the nearest pub to formulate a new plan. This was the lowest part of the ride for all of us. After a little bit of Internet searching we found alternative accommodation just a few miles away but exhausted we relied on our support team to carry us and the bikes to our resting place. After a good evening meal we regrouped in the morning for what would be our final day to Broadstairs in Kent, a hilly start with a flat coastal ending. the perfect end to a challenge. After a good breakfast we all headed off. The route contained a lot of ups and downs but the views are spectacular and made every turn of the pedal worthwhile. As we dropped to the coast and the busy roads we jumped onto a cycle path this took us all the way to Broadstairs on a very flat run. When we arrived at Broadstairs however, our leader Glyn informed us this was not our final destination, but rather Botany Bay would be or final destination of this challenge. Tired and exhausted we climbed out of Broadstairs and around the coast to Botany Bay. On arrival we ordered some well-deserved drinks and had our final photograph on the stairs of the hotel and you can imagine the surprise when some of our family and friends arrived to welcome us at the end of a challenge.
A truly memorable experience and although it’s not on my bucket list it’s certainly one I’ll take off.
We’ve all done our part and now all we ask is you do you bit of support in whatever way you can by giving what you can afford to this amazing charity.
Giving just a few pounds makes an incredible difference of the incredible work the Bobath children therapy centre can do in support of children in much greater need than us.
Glyn, Paul and the team.