Members and visiting brethren of Phoenix Lodge No 1730 were most honoured and delighted to receive Assistant Provincial Grand Master John Hutton, at their installation meeting to witness the WM and installing master Jan Fischer install Ken Allen as WM for the ensuing year. And of course akin to the immortal words of a favoured artist of Ken’s, Bob Dylan’s song titled a ‘Fourth time around’.
Jan, being a very busy academic residing in the London area had not failed to attend his lodge throughout his tenure as master either for lodge nights or other lodge associated business and with basic mathematics must have exceeded in excess of 4,000 road miles alone in travelling to attend on lodge nights, admirable proof of being an absolute earnest of exertion towards the cause.
The meeting, held at Urmston Masonic Hall was well attended and John was in good company being accompanied by fellow grand officers Brian Hayes and South Eastern Group Vice Chairman David Durling, along with other Provincial grand officers, group officers and distinguished visiting brethren.
The lodge was opened in good form and as the evening progressed, Jan installed Ken in an excellent manner evidently proving to be fully au fait with his responsibility and worked in a diligent manner supported by his officers.
There then followed excellent presentations of the working tools in the third degree by Polychronis Bouzioglou, the second degree tools by Graham Jackson and finally the working tools in the first degree given with much panache by Jim Jones. Following this there was an excellent address to the master given by Brian Hayes and in equal excellence, the address to the brethren was given by John.
The installation ceremony having come to its completion, John rose at the customary point of the proceedings and immediately conveyed the best wishes of the Provincial Grand Master Tony Harrison, offering his congratulations to Ken on being installed as WM, wishing him and the lodge members good health to enjoy a happy and busy year ahead.
John continued by saying that had Tony been present, he would have also had great pleasure in congratulating the installing master Jan for the excellent work that he had put into the ceremony and similarly congratulating him for his previous successful and well-travelled year in the chair. Addressing the installing officers and brethren of the lodge, John similarly complimented them on the high standard of the ceremony and of the excellent, friendly manner in which it had been conducted and in particular to those newer brethren who gave those excellent presentations of the working tools.
Ken then responded to John by thanking him for him passing on the good wishes of the Provincial Grand Master and had much pleasure in presenting an envelope containing a cheque on the behalf of the lodge. John, having asked Ken’s permission, revealed to the brethren the content of the cheque being made out for a tremendous amount of £500 in favour for the West Lancashire Freemasons’ Charity. John said this was a most generous contribution and clearly had much pleasure in congratulating and thanking the lodge members on behalf of all those eventual recipients, we may never know, for their most kind, charitable giving.
The same sentiments and congratulations on the excellence of the ceremony were reiterated by David Durling in his response at the first rising, he too concurred with John’s comments that it had been a most enjoyable meeting and similarly wished Ken an excellent year ahead.
The evening continued with an enjoyable, friendly, jovial festive board. John, in his response to the toast to his health, thanked the lodge members for their very kind welcome and communicated his own good wishes to Ken and the lodge. The evening being ended thus concluded a most enjoyable, abundant evening.