The planning for the Strawberry Tea starts in the January WBro Phil Aubrey and myself meet up to prepare the tickets, posters and raffles for the Home. This is followed by numerous meetings of the activities committee to ensure the smooth running of the event. The usual suspects turned up early on the morning of the Fayre. Phil Aubrey and Dave Franklin from the Friends worked with Nick Evans, Christian Prive and Sam Lloyd Williams from the Collonade Club to ensure that all the strawberries were hulled and chopped ready for the event. At the same time many of the Masonic Diaries committee arrived with Dave Basset setting up the BBQ area, Peter Williams and Martyn Wake worked on setting up the Diaries stall to prepare for what was their most successful sales day ever.
The event started at 1.30pm with the fantastic Ruth Jones of Stella and Gavin and Stacey opening the event. We would like to thank Ruth for the kinds words about the home and I am sure attracting a number of people to the event. PGM RW Bro Gareth Jones OBE presented Ruth with a magnificent bouquet of flowers to convey our thanks. Ruth then held a 30 minute meet and greet for fans to ensure they managed to get that coveted picture.
At 2.30pm the Bridgend Tenovus Sing with Us Choir performed on the front lawn to rapturous applause. The entertainment didn’t stop there with the fantastic duo of Huw Chidgey and Mel Crew performing in the garden. At this point things were winding down and we were all grateful for the respite.
The BBQ was a roaring success with so many outside activities on. I must thank Andy and Connor Robertson from Robertsons event catering for providing their services free of charge for the day. With the help of Dave Bassett and Mark Cornelius this yet again keeping those making a day of it well fed. Joan Murrell and Sheila Cornelius were yet again like little terriers on the door . These stunning ‘Rottweilers’ as we affectional call them netted nearly £800. The Bottle Tombola is still proving successful with Cheryl Williams and Dee Bassett ensuring we achieved nearly £300. The tombola again sold out very quickly if you have any donations for Christmas please put them aside so that we can make a bigger and better Tombola next time. Thanks go to volunteers Christian Prive and Sam Lloyd Williams for assisting on this stall.
This year the outdoor activities continued and thanks to the addition of a number of Gazebo’s purchased for the home from the Friends of the Court we even had an additional tea and coffee serving area. We are very grateful to Joe and Gemma from Swift leisure for providing the Bouncy Slide, Mini Golf and Ring the Bell. The children who attended had a wonderful time and were thoroughly entertained. Anthony Williams of Titleist yet again donated prizes for our putting competition. We would like to thank him and Titleist for their continued support.
The Mayor of Porthcawl Mr Robert Lee and his consort wife Ann attended the event on behalf of the town council. They spent time with residents, staff and visitors. Robert then drew the raffles with many local people winning prizes. We would like to thank them for taking the time to come to our fantastic Home.
Each of the provinces were well represented at the event with PGM RW Bro Gareth Jones OBE in attendance from South Wales, VW Bro Brian C Hilling Deputy Provincial Grand Master from West Wales and WBro Jim Wheeler representing Monmouthsire. We are very grateful that each of the three provinces that the home represents were present at our event and thank all those in attendance on the day.
This article provided by Rebecca Timms
If you fancy a look at the wonderful selection of vehicles that attended the classic vehicle show last Saturday then copy and paste the link below into your browser. This will take you to the facebook page.
The Summer Spectacular at the Hogs Head Llantillio Crosseny this year exceeded all our expectations. The classic vehicle show in the daytime was extremely popular with many superb vehicles brought from far and wide. The weather was beautiful and without a doubt this helped as the attendance was more than double of the same event last year.
The evening entertainment was the Abba tribute band ‘Bjorn Belief’ and they were great fun and had almost everyone dancing. Over 300 people attended this very event, the auction raised a large sum of money and the raffle raised around £1500. Once all the figures are collected up it is hoped the total raised should be over £10,000. Full details will be circulated when they become available.
On a lovely sunny day in April, the Deputy Grand Superintendant (centre) Robert H. Arundel, the 2nd Provincial Grand Principal, (left) Robert H. Fountain and the 3rd Provincial Grand Principal (right, that’s me by the way!!) Anthony M. Halse travelled to the County Showground at Stafford. What a wonderful venue and the welcome we received was second to none. The meeting was the first official visit of the new 2nd Grand Principal (Russell John Race) and I feel sure that he enjoyed himself just as much as ourselves. We had an entertaining trip up with the navigational skills of our 2nd Principal Robert adding at least 15 minutes to our journey whilst viewing some of the quaint side streets of Stafford trying to get back on the correct road that we had so confidently left. The meeting was extremely well attended by Provinces from far and wide and the general feel of the meeting was friendship and hospitality. Congratulations Staffordshire we look forward to you visiting us in June.
GENTLEMEN; WOULD YOU BE INTERESTED IN
BECOMING A FREEMASON?
If so, please complete the no obligation form and post it to The Masonic Hall, 109 Lower Dock Street, Newport NP20 2AG marked for the attention of the Recruitment Officers.
Telephone ________________________Date of Birth__________________
In just a few words please tell why you would be interested in becoming a member of our organisation. ___________________________________________________________________________
Lodges meet on average 9 times per year and there are lodges based over the 4 corners of the Old County of Monmouthshire, which area would ideally suit you? ___________________________________________________________
Different Lodges meet on different days, which day or days would ideally suit you? Please indicate: – Mon. Tue. Wed. Thur. Fri. or Sat.
In the presence of the Provincial Grand Master for the Masonic Province of Monmouthshire, the Brethren of the Isca Lodge of Instruction held their annual Festival on Thursday 5th of May at Newport Masonic Hall.
The Lodge of Instruction demonstrated a ceremony of Initiation with Bro. Robert Hepworth of the NIOBA Lodge presiding as Worshipful Master. Assisting the WM in the chair were Bro Paul Holloway as SW and Bro Paul Francis as JW, both members of the Silurian Lodge.
Brethren from many Monmouthshire Lodges participated in the ceremony proper, namely Bro David Murray of the AEPOW Lodge as SD, Bro Nigel Davies of the NIOBA Lodge as JD, Bro Ben Bennett of the Homfray Lodge as IG, W Bro Martin Price of the Isca Lodge as IPM, W Bro Ray Jones of the Silurian Lodge as Charity Steward & ADC, W Bro Graham Turner of the NIOBA Lodge as Chaplain, W Bro Matthew Eales of the Isca Lodge as DC, W Bro George Reynolds as Tyler and W Bro Andrew Murphy as Organist; Both of the Jasper Tudor Lodge. To conclude, Bro Paul Angeli of the Isca Lodge offered himself as the candidate.
The demonstration of the initiation ceremony was regarded as a resounding success, with accolades led by the PGM RW Bro, the Rev Malcolm Lane, the PAPGM W Bro Robert Arundel, and the many visitors in attendance. Special mentions were credited to Bro Ben Bennett who delivered the Extended Working Tools in the 1st Degree, to Bro Paul Francis who delivered the Charge to the Initiate, to Bro Nigel Davies who led the perambulations as JD, and to W Bro Ray Jones who delivered the Charity Charge.
The WM in the chair, Bro Robert Hepworth, was afforded the highest of accolades with the PGM commenting that his ceremony was of “silver matchbox” quality.
The Festival was concluded by an excellent Festive Board where the Isca Lodge of Instruction paid their gratitude to the retiring preceptor W Bro Brian Leach, and duly rewarded him for his many years of active service.
This article courtesy of W. Bro. Huw Gallagher.
At the Casnewydd Lodge this week a very proud family initiated yet another of their family into Freemasonry. The Seftons, pictured above are a very well known and prominent family within Monmouthshire and many of the main Lodge offices were filled by Family members to initiate Bro. Neil Sefton.
W.Bro Philip Sefton was Master in the Chair (Uncle of the Candidate)W.Bro Terence Sefton acted as Junior Deacon (Uncle of the Candidate)
W.Bro Bernard Sefton delivered the Charity Charge (Uncle of the Candidate)
W.Bro Terence Sefton also presented the Working Tools
S.W. Bro Graham Greenway invested the Apron (Uncle of the Candidate)
J.W. Bro Shane Sefton delivered to Charge to the Initiate (Cousin of the Candidate)
It was a very emotional and well performed ceremony with top marks going to Bro Shane for a floorless Charge to the Initiate, (Which made his father W.Bro Bernard smile a little).
It was also a fraternal visit for the Brethren of Preswylfa Lodge No 5792 from Cardiff, and the feeling within the Temple and dining room was absolutely splendid.
Congratulations to all concerned.
During the evening at the Roderick Hill Ladies night held at Chepstow Masonic Hall on 6th Feb, a cheque for £1500 raised by the Brethren was presented to Ms Catrin Hall, the Wales Air Ambulance Community Coordinator for the South East by W. Bro. Mike Wightman. Congratulations to the Lodge members for their hard work raising such a sum for a truly worthwhile cause.
The New Lahore Indian restaurant in Newport donated around 50% of the value of food ordered to our charity and didn’t they do well!
Pictured are the Lahore’s owner, Mr. Shah Shaffee (3rd from L) presenting a Cheque for £578 to W.Bro. Vernon Edwards who organised the event, W.Bro. Chris Evans Assistant Provincial Grand Master, Bro. Richard Lee and W.Bro. Dave Llewellyn.The event was also supported by the PGM, Deputy PGM and the Prov. Grand Secretary of the Mark Degree.
Many Brethren who could not attend made donations and W. Bro. Vernon would like to thank them all very much for their generosity. Altogether, the evening raised a staggering £780.00 which is a huge amount just going out for a meal. The money will go to the Monmouthshire Provincial Grand Charity 2004, for onward transmission to the 1997 Trust Fund, and will be distributed amongst Local Charities and Good Causes. A huge thank you goes to Mr. Shah Shaffee and the staff at the New Lahore Restaurant for their very generous contribution and for their wonderful hospitality and Service. And by the way the food was fantastic.
February the 15th was the second MMCSA event and was held at at Keeper Lodge just outside Chepstow. It was cold morning and the dark grey clouds were threatening rain, but the hardy bunch turned up as promised, together with two new comers. Our hosts, Clive and Rob Prichard met us as we arrived from 9:30 and made us all very welcome with a nice hot coffee and bacon roll.
I didn’t arrive until around 9:45 and Clive was a little confused at who Paul was and called each the early arrivals Paul until I finally arrived, meeting Clive for the first time face to face. (I think I need a cap with my name on it and issue one to all the members with the words ‘I’m not Paul’.) Some were more keen than other to start the days shooting and arrived at 9:15am, but unfortunatly at the wrong ground (you know who you are, I’ll send you a map next time).
After a quick safety brief Clive and the group agreed to split into two groups, with Clive taking the two new shooters for a private session with tuition and gun hire. The rest of us gathered our guns and head down to the first of the 6 stands. By the time we completed the 3rd stand the clouds let loose their furry but luckily by this time we were in a cover stand. Unfortunately for each shooter they were facing the rain head on when they entered the shooting stand.
The group were warmly met by all the other shooters as we worked our way around the stands and a thoroughly good time was had by all. Still in the end there had to be one winner.
And the winner was………………………………….John Hemmings from the province of Bristol, Well done John.
At the Jasper Tudor Lodge at Newport Masonic Hall last Saturday evening it was the election of the new Worshipful Master for 2016/17. Bro. Ben Waters was well supported by fourteen Wardens of the Province. That’s over half the Lodges of the Province represented. A good night was had by all enjoying an excellent ceremony and after proceedings with the festivities continuing until quite late.
Worshipful Brother George Reynolds of the Jasper Tudor Lodge No. 4074 has been providing his services to many Lodges over decades as a Tyler of the Lodge. W. Bro. George (a WWII veteran and an ex Japanese POW) at 96 years young still imposes a daunting figure to those who meet him for the first time, but respect is soon gained for the demeanour of a man who has seen much and does his best to share his knowledge of Freemasonry and the correct way of giving the various salutes and behavioral aspects which should be expected from all true Freemasons. W. Bro. George is also renowned for his inimitable Tylers toast at the dining table which signifies the end of the formal proceedings.
It has been an eventful year and as we embrace the many new initiatives from the United Grand Lodge of England in a more modern approach to our fraternity and especially in the way we must look after and care for our membership and in doing so, to become a far more pro-active pastoral fraternal organisation.
Over the past year you have once again demonstrated your ability to meet one of the key elements of our mission – to increase our contribution to the community in Monmouthshire which is only possible with your continued response to my appeal that you continue in your support of the 1997 Monmouthshire Masonic Trust Fund which supports Monmouthshire good causes.
It is natural, for a caring organisation like ours, to enhance that focus as we approach the Festive Season and I am delighted that during the year Monmouthshire Freemasons have done so much to improve the lives of many of the less fortunate members of our local community, especially children.
Four weeks ago I was able to distribute over twenty six thousand pounds through the magnificent work of the Chairman , Secretary and committee of Monmouthshire Masonic Trust Fund to a variety of deserving good causes and charitable enterprises which had been identified by the twenty nine Lodges in the Province . For me, personally, this has always been one of the highlights in our annual Masonic Diary and long may it continue and I thank you for the support in renewing your gift aids so that this valuable work of care in our community can be sustained into the future.
I am sure that the Festive Season will provide further opportunities to demonstrate the caring nature of Freemasonry to the community, to our widows and to our Brethren and I am deeply grateful to all and particularly to my Deputy ,and Assistant Provincial Grand Masters’ who along with my executive Officers ensure that our organisation continues to thrive and make a significant contribution to the community and be ready for the challenges ahead . You should all be proud of what you have achieved over the past year.
I wish you and your families a blessed and peaceful Christmas and good health and happiness in 2016.
Reverend Malcolm C G Lane JP
Provincial Grand Master.
Above are the recipients of donations made at Newport Masonic Hall last Friday evening. All charities operate within Monmouthshire and are an integral part of our community. It was very touching to hear of the hard work they do and the reasons why. A milestone was passed that evening as well. Since the inception of the 1997 Trust fund 500 donations have been made totalling the incredible sum of £300,000. All raised by Masons within the Province and distributed to many worthy causes.
At the Charles Lyne Installed Masters Lodge last evening, history was made with the presentation of the Director of Ceremonies cup. The first recipient of this trophy was W. Bro. David Morgan of the Striguil Lodge No. 2186. The criteria for winning this trophy is accuracy, decorum, punctuality and understanding and executing precisely the many duties of the Director of Ceremonies within the Lodge. The trophy will be awarded annually and the recipient will receive an engraved goblet as a memento. Congratulations to David, the award is well deserved.
Last evening the 2004/5 Masters enjoyed another annual gathering at the Parc Golf Club Coedkernew. The food was delicious and we were entertained by Bro. Robert Knight and his new singing companion Beverley Parsons. The Provincial Grand Master, The Rev. Malcolm C. G. Lane also supported the evening and was very pleased when he was presented with £100 towards local charities which was the proceeds of a well supported raffle. Pictured above is W. Bro. Allan Williams MBE thanking the singers for such splendid entertainment.
They raise money for other good causes of course! He is a picture of the Shirefest folk music event held at the Huntsman Hotel Shirenewton. It was a very well attended event and raised several hundreds of pounds for charity. The charities supported were Noah’s ark hospital and little hearts matter.
This courtesy of W. Bro. Phil Moles.
Each Year on Onetree Railway we have a private charity fund raising event when Jeana and I make our railway and garden available. This year Loyal Monmouth Masonic Lodge had an event on behalf of “St David’s Hospice Care” and by request a couple of weeks later Hertford Lodge from Sutton Coldfield came. Their charity was “Holly Trust Bowel Cancer Care”. Every penny goes to the charities. About 55 attended each event this year.
Such is the popularity of these and Halloween night runs it has proved beneficial to construct an external toilet adjacent platform / steaming bays. Tasteful interior décor includes stove enamel signs, an array of unusual spanners, an ancient switchgear box, a huge white with-drawable porcelain fuse wire holder and a notice board which portrays various model engineering themes. It has been known for a queue to form while these are being studied.
Preparation takes about three days and transforms the garden. On the day, setting-up usually starts by 7am with things such as assemble our class 37, put in place one lift-out bridge, telegraph poles, signals, then do a lap of honour to check loading gauge with plants, bushes and the track generally. Telling passengers most of our plants are prickly, poisonous or both works very well keeping elbows and knees in. They also tend to sit up straight. Supports and covers are lifted out of the trench across our driveway. Uprights are dropped into concrete sockets for receipt of a tubular barrier onto which bunting and signs are added. One section is sideways sliding to open up for a wheelchair bridge or for direct loading onto the running track. Here the 37 is particularly useful and a bit of shunting can take place while everyone helps, arrives, steam is raised, bacon sandwiches consumed, a general chat and finding that odd something or other.
We enjoy model engineers running from about 10am onwards with formal event usually starting 2.30 until 5.30ish. Two or three locos often run at one time and come from all points of the compass. So far this year we have had visitors from Hereford, Newport, Lydney, Bath, Somerset, Sutton Coldfield and Kinver.
Scone mix has already been weighed into bags giving a known number of scones per oven capacity. Bacon, bread rolls and brown sauce are on standby. Billy-can and white enamel mugs come into use. Cakes are cut up as they arrive and put on the serving table along one wall of the still unfinished dining room, along with all the crockery, serviettes and where is that free standing rubbish bag? Cream is whipped and jam into dishes.
We have general running which everyone enjoys and gives a very busy railway for the punters. Not everyone wishes to take passengers and we have found a couple of instances where smaller locos have struggled. Our 37 usually takes one adult or two youngsters as passengers. We can take more but find this tends to be a good average through an event after initial surge. Also stopping on 1:50 aluminium rail works well on this basis.
As host there is never a moment when you are not involved with something, be it matching couplings, reaching for the second kettle, finding a nut this size or guiding someone along the front path past arrow signs directing them to the level crossing where Action Man in full High Viz outfit is on duty, rather than they get stuck trying to duck under the barrier tangled with their walking sticks and one foot down in the trench. No! I don’t care if you do think it would be quicker.
A length of display track is put on the garden sink worktop by our back door. A part assembled loco was of particular interest. Then there are the questions!
“How did you make the coal?”
“Are those really clay scale bricks in that wagon?”
There are very strange looks when explaining the brick wagon is weathered using a by-product of drilling holes to put up some shelves.
I have to leave your imagination what Monmouth French Twinning visitors thought, they had to be dragged away to an evening concert. “Delightful English eccentricity” was their awestruck accolade. (They still have difficulty understanding they are in Wales and haven’t yet twigged 2015 is 600th anniversary of the Battle of Agincourt or that Henry V was born here in Monmouth Castle)
When Cream Tea is served, trays are carried to the gazebos. This is when there is greatest attention to trains which are running and a lot of calling to drivers / passengers. To give drivers a chance with refreshments, sometimes I give someone a short up and down driving lesson on the viaduct. This enables guests to see what is going on alongside where they are sitting and I know they are safely remote. Walking alongside and explaining and monitoring keeps everything under my control For some it is their highlight of the event. Now Doggy-bag routine as they begin to depart.
After the Lord Mayor’s Show as they say, it is usually after 8pm when most things are put away and batteries put back on charge. Today our hobby has made a lot of people happy. Didn’t hear a raised voice or a cross word. Thanks to every one who helped.
Poignantly, knowing today’s charity – one visiting loco was unable to attend due to side effects of chemotherapy two days before.
This article courtesy of W.Bro. Bill Hall.
Last Saturday the Province of Monmouthshire held our first ever classic vehicle show at the Hogs Head, Llantisilio Crossenny. The event was well supported with approaching 100 vehicles on display throughout the day. The weather stayed in our favour and there was also a healthy number of spectators. The show was such a success it is hoped we will hold another next year and will encourage even more exhibits.
The photographs are too numerous to place on the blog but courtesy of W.Bro. Roger Thompson here is a link to them. Just copy and paste the address into your browser.
Above is pictured a memorial to the men of the Monmouthshire Regiment who lost 85 men in one day who were inhabitants of Newport in 1915. 85 trees were planted in their memory opposite Blaina Wharf a few of which are pictured below. W.Bro. Charles Ferris worked very hard collecting for this memorial and encouraged many Masons to be contributors from funds given to 250.000 poppy seeds.
Members of the Jasper Tudor Lodge organised a cabaret evening where many dressed up in exotic clothing and entertained everyone for a few hours. The main contributors to the evenings entertainment were the Maindee Martial Arts and Fitness Centre of which around 8 of the Jasper Tudor Brethren are either members or have family links. Everyone worked extremely hard at fundraising for local charities and in particular the outstanding effort by both Bro. Gary Gassors daughters Emma and Leanne. Local businesses were approached and the positive results were there for all to see by the end of the evening with a staggering £14,291.65 raised. Prior to the evening several individuals had raised funds by several means, from running half marathons to individual training sessions with some of the highly qualified Martial Arts Tutors. The funds will be distributed in varying proportions to the local branches of :- Cystic Fybrosis, The Stroke Association, The Sparkle Appeal (local childrens Hospital), Special Care Infant Parent Support and the Jasper Tudor Lodger Charity Account which supports local charities and good causes throughout the year.
Newport Masonic Hall was full to capacity which was also a good thing as no doubt there would have been a healthy income at the bar and as funds are always needed to help restore the building this would be an added bonus.
The Lodge of Friendship held their annual BBQ in the beautiful grounds of one of their members. The day was well attended and the sun shone throughout, which added to the enjoyment. Entertainment was provided which many sang along to and a generous raffle was held the proceeds of which will be donated to local charities.
Photos courtesy of W Bro. Mike Quick.