It was a special occasion for the brethren of Standish Lodge No 4955 and their many guests gathered at the Park Hall Hotel, Charnock Richard, to witness the installation of John Thompson as their new WM. The lodge was honoured by the presence of Assistant Provincial Grand Master Robert Wright as the principle guest. Robert was accompanied by Ormskirk and Bootle Group Chairman Frank Umbers, vice chairman Graham Chambers, Malcolm Alexander and acting Provincial grand officers.
The outgoing WM Roy Gibson started the evening’s proceedings by warmly welcoming the visiting brethren to the meeting. Roy opened the lodge and after the initial lodge business was completed he opened the lodge to the second and third degrees, where the director of ceremonies Terry Worthington announced that Robert Wright was without and demanded admission.
Robert was then admitted into the temple accompanied by grand officers, Frank Umbers, Brian Fairhurst and Malcolm Alexander; they were in turn accompanied by acting Provincial grand officers, Mike Dutton, Russell Skidmore, John Walters and David Rigby. Roy then warmly welcomed Robert to the ceremony and offered him the gavel of the lodge, which Robert gracefully declined.
The master elect, John Thompson, was then installed according to ancient custom into the chair of King Solomon; with the ceremony undertaken by David Smith, Stephen Hurst and Terry Worthington. The working tools for an installed master were presented by Stanley Crozier from De Bon Cuer Lodge No 6984.
The working tools for the third degree was presented by Bryan Hurst, the second degree by Stephen Hurst and the first degree by Stuart Sidebottom, all three were presented in an excellent manner. Once the lodge officers had been invested, the address to the brethren of the lodge was given by Robert Wright, delivered in his usual confident and proficient manner.
At the end the ceremony of installation, Robert addressed the brethren by bringing congratulations from the Provincial Grand Master Tony Harrison, wishing John and all the brethren the very best of health and hoping they have a happy Masonic year. Robert congratulated David, Stephen and Terry for the manner in which they had installed John into the chair and also all the brethren who had taken part in the ceremony.
John then presented Robert with six cheques totalling £2,687. £1,587 to the MCF 2021 Festival which has already been donated, £600 to the West Lancashire Freemasons’ Charity, £150 to Macmillan Nurses, £150 to the North West Ambulance Service, £100 to Derian House and £100 for Wigan and Leigh Hospice. On behalf of the recipients Robert thanked the lodge brethren for their very generous and worthy donations.
Once the presentation of the cheques had been completed, Malcolm Sandywell, the group festival representative, presented John with the lodge certificate of Vice Patronage of the MCF 2021 Festival.
After closing the lodge in prayer and harmony the brethren made their way to an excellent festive board which was enjoyed by all.