News Archive

Rev Henry Duncan – Founder of the first savings bank and Freemason and some more treasures of interest in Dumfriesshire………

One of the most interesting characters researched by one of the MAMR members could possibly be Rev Henry DuncanHenry Duncan, who was a Scottish Minister who had met Robert Burns when he was a child. He was also a Chapter Mason who later became the Minister of Rothwell church in Dumfriesshire, South West Scotland. John Belton researched the life of Henry Duncan and had the paper published in the September 2009 copy of The Square magazine.

Read the full article by clicking :Rev Duncan Innovative Banker

Following the visit to Lanholm by some of the MAMR members, John Belton took fellow association members John Acaster along with Peter Nicholson to visit Rothwell church to take a look at the Rothwell Cross and the savings bank museum. It seems they were not alone in their curiosity as on the previous day the museum had received a visit from the Chairman of one of the worlds biggest merchant banks based in China.

John Belton John Acaster with the Rothwell Cross (top) with views of the church entrance and inside the museum

John Belton John Acaster with the Rothwell Cross (top) with views of the church entrance and inside the museum

In addition to the visit to see the cross (erected by Henry Duncan in the church at Ruthwell), the brethren also took the opportunity to visit nearby Caerlaverlock Castle.

The place is managed by Historic Scotland.  There was no known masonic connection, although the standard of workmanship of medieval operative masons is always amazing.  A search for mason marks proved fruitless, but they will be there to be found by some future visitor with more time than we had.Caerlave collage

The figures in the above photographs from Caerlaverock are John Belton & John Acaster.  Firstly looking into the moat, where on occasions protected species natterjack toads might be spotted.  The toads however remained unseen, knowing better than to put on any kind of display for our intrepid researchers.

The final visit was to Lincluden Priory on the edge of Dumfries. No obvious sign of mason marks was found there either however.

John Acaster decided to visit in order to decipher what remains visible of the Latin inscription above the principal tomb.  The outcome being, that John insists the occupant of the grave is in a fact a prioress (& therefore a woman).

John Acaster at Lincluden priory in search of Masonic connections

John Acaster at Lincluden priory in search of Masonic connections

MAMR visit Provincial Grand Lodge of Shropshire

Brethren of MAMR were in attendance to see once of the Associations’ Vice Presidents, VW Bro Roger Pemberton, installed as The Provincial Grand Master and Grand Superintendent in  the Province of Shropshire.S Banner

Taking place in a rural setting in the heart of the county, Provincial Grand Lodge had some distinguished guests including MW Bro Peter Geoffrey Lowndes, Pro Grand Master, with a full team of acting officers of United Grand Lodge to assist him.

MAMR’s visitors included the current President and Master of Lodge of Silent Temple No126, WBro Peter Robinson, Program Secretary WBro John Acaster, Treasurer, WBro Peter Nicholson and Webmaster and Publicity Officer WBro Allan Shields.

Left to right, John Acaster, President Peter Robinson and Allan Shields

Left to right, John Acaster, President Peter Robinson and Allan Shields

The day started with a special Convocation of Provincial Grand Chapter during which Peter Lowndes, Pro First Grand Principal opened the convocation and then proceeded to Roger as Grand Superintendent in and over Shropshire.

The brethren then dined at a festive board lunch, during which the brethren of the Province along with its many visitors enjoyed a fine meal and the opportunity to raise their glasses to both Peter Lowndes and Roger.Who then entertained the brethren with their responses. Roger presented The Pro Grand Master with a bottle of Welsh whiskey. Many of the brethren had the unique and pleasurable experience of meeting the Pro Grand Master as he mingled among them in the bar before lunch.

The brethren then reassembled in the lodge room and Provincial Grand Lodge was opened in due form by Past Provincial Grand Master RWBro James McAllister Hodgson. The Pro Grand Master was then admitted in fine style along with a procession of Grand Officers from London and other Provincial Grand Masters from around the country. The Pro Grand Master welcomed all the brethren, many had travelled from far and wide to share the day with Roger including a Brother who had journeyed from Cape Town, South Africa to be there.

Roger Pemberton, right, with Peter Robinson

Roger Pemberton, right, with Peter Robinson

Roger was installed in a wonderful ceremony; the day was a real treat for any brother who enjoys the spectacle of high quality ritual and ceremonial displays.

Roger then appointed his deputy WBro Jeremy Lund along with the rest of his team for the year.

He then thanked all those who had made the day a special occasion and attended the meeting and following a rapturous singing of the National Anthem, closed Provincial Grand Lodge in his new capacity as RW Brother, the Provincial Grand Master.

MAMR are planning visit to The Shropshire Lodge of Installed Masters on Saturday November 3rd. Look out on mamr.co.uk for further details.

Roger is to bring Quatuor Coronati Lodge No 2076 to the province for one of its future meetings details of which will be issued in due course.

For information about Freemasonry and The Royal Arch in Shropshire visit: shropshiremasons.org.uk

Service of praise with Lodge Eskdale Kilwinning No 107

Members of MAMR recently headed to the town of Langholm in the Scottish Borders to take part in an event as part of the ‘Common Riding’ week end.

Two Hundred and forty-four years ago the three owners of the Ten Merk Lands of Langholm were parties in an action in the Court of Session in Edinburgh for the delimitation of certain areas of ground in and around the town. This ground was marked out by beacons, pits and the erection of cairns to indicate the boundary of these communal lands.Each year a man would go out on horseback to ensure that the boundary was intact and that no one had crossed them: a later day security guard and this ‘riding out’ is celebrated each year in the town with a festival, horse riding-lead by a ‘cornet’ rider and parades in the town’s streets lead by a pipe band.

The bridge in Lanholm in the beautiful setting of The Scottish Borders with horse riders and an owl carved from a tree stump

The bridge in Lanholm in the beautiful setting of The Scottish Borders with horse riders and an owl carved from a tree stump

The brethren from MAMR had been invited by Lodge Eskdale kilwinning and Robert Bruce Chapter, whom some are also members of, to join a parade through the town and attend a special service in the church. There was a total of 47 visiting brethren and Companions and officers of several Scottish Provincial Grand Lodges as well as the Grand Superintendent of the Dumfriesshire Royal Arch Chapters.

Members of MAMR (left to right) J Belton, J Acaster, T Thomas,I Eastwood, P Nicholson and A Shields with members of Lodge 107

Members of MAMR (left to right) J Belton, J Acaster, T Thomas,I Eastwood, P Nicholson and A Shields with members of Lodge 107

On the sound of a piper the brethren assembled in the lodge room. The Lodge was opened by RWM Bro John Douglas and promptly called off to allow the Companions to change into Royal Arch regalia. They formed up in a ‘two by two’ procession behind the town band and set off on the 10 minute parade that took them around the town where they were cheered on by many of Langholm’s residents who had taken to the streets. Crossing over the quaint stone bridge and  then flanked out in front of the church where The Reverend I. Scott McCarthy greeted the Worshipful Master of the lodge.

The procession arrives at the church (top) Turning to cross the bridge and the band pictured below

The procession arrives at the church (top) Turning to cross the bridge and the band pictured below

Once inside the church a service of music and praise took place with readings and music  from RWM Bro John Douglas and soloist Bro Allan Marshall PPGM (Roxburgh, Peebles and Selkirkshire). The service now over the brethren formed up into a procession and headed back to the Masonic buildings to call on and then close the lodge. There followed a light tea of sandwiches and a fantastic selection of cakes which was all home cooked and served with refreshments of tea and coffee or something a bit stronger! Some of the MAMR brethren stayed over for the night or the previous night making this a most enjoyable and enlightening experience for everyone that we hope to repeat next year.

 

Bottoms Meeting

The meeting took place in conjunction with the Lodge of Prince George No. 308

Our WM WBro Peter Robinson with the WM of Lodge of Prince George, WBro Peter Grace and the speaker WBro Chris Powell

Our WM WBro Peter Robinson with the WM of Lodge of Prince George, WBro Peter Grace and the speaker WBro Chris Powell

Chris Powell will spoke about the remarkable Masonic artwork displayed at this former busy hotel in its pivotal location in the upper Calder valley between Lancashire and Yorkshire.

The brethren of Prince George Lodge with members of MAMR

The brethren of Prince George Lodge with members of MAMR

Our New President’s inaugural address

The meeting in March, attended by about 15 members, was exceptional as it was the first opportunity in 2018 for our new President-elect, WBro. Peter Robinson, to be inducted by his predecessor WBro. Philip Myers. Various items of routine were dealt with. The appointment of WBro. Ken Olive to be the new Editor of the Transactions could hardly be described as ‘routine’, however, and he was warmly thanked for volunteering to undertake this most important role.

Peter Robinson - 2018 President MAMR

Peter Robinson – 2018 President MAMR

In accordance with ancient custom our new President then delivered his Inaugural Address.  In doing so he remarked that it was a unique occasion as he would be the first President in the history of MAMR to be elected for a fresh second term. On the former occasion he had spoken about the Egertons of Tatton, so influential in the Province of Cheshire over a long period. On this occasion he would be completing this by examining the role of Alan de Tatton Egerton (1845-1920), PGM from December 1900 following the death of his elder brother, Wilbraham. In 1909 at Stockport Alan presided over what was to be the largest Provincial Grand Lodge of Cheshire up to that time. The talk ended with a brief account of Alan’s son, Maurice, who led an extraordinary, bohemian existence, and on whose death in 1978 the Tatton Park estate became a flagship of the National Trust.

The President mentioned the remarkable start of the Lodge of King Solomon’s Temple No. 3464. It was founded on the Wirral in 1910 with a very prestigious slate of early members drawn from all over the world (headed by R.F. Gould, the great historian of Freemasonry). He left us with the question: why was it founded in Cheshire?  Answers please  . . .

Let’s Talk Masonry 2018

This years event took place at Salford, with over 100 brethren attending it was a hugely successful day which was enjoyed by all. The conference was honoured to have in the audience Sir David Trippier, Provincial Grand Master of the hosting province – East Lancashire.

The theme for this conference was ‘Exoteric or Esoteric’ and took a look at our First Degree in particular. The three principal speakers were Christopher Powell who brought ‘and illustrated by symbols’, Tony Baker presented ‘A Deeper Look at The First Degree’. After a superb buffet lunch Steven Reid presented the final talk ‘ Symbols – the bigger picture’

From left to right- Steven Reid, Chris Powell, Tony Baker and John Acaster

From left to right- Steven Reid, Chris Powell, Tony Baker and John Acaster

There were also break out sessions and John Acaster, a Past President of MAMR discussed ‘The Lodge Room – a Transformative environment.’

Chris Powell meanwhile held a break out session specifically for Installed First Principals  to discuss the discoveries made on attaining that high office.

Members of MAMR held a book stall offering the visitors a chance to snap up some great books at rock bottom prices!

Tony Baker (left) making additions to his masonic library with Roy Chapman

Tony Baker (left) making additions to his masonic library with Roy Chapman

Allan Shields (webmaster) and Roy Chapman (City Sykes District Mentor) assisted MAMR’s librarian Tony Costello with the book stall which proved very popular.

The event was very well organised and managed by The East Lancashire Provincial Education & Development team who work hard to make this annual event a huge success. Watch out for details of next years event and join in on a great day ‘making your daily advancement’

MAMR bookstall manned by (left to right) Roy, Tony and Allan

MAMR bookstall manned by (left to right) Roy, Tony and Allan

 

 Sergio Prezioso, a member of MAMR has had an article published in the latest edition of ‘The Square’.

Click below to download his paper ‘AASR in Italy- A Brief History’

AASR in Italy – A Brief History – Sergio Prezioso

 

Wednesday 27 September meeting:

Knoop, Jones and Hamer- Three English Masonic Historians.

The evening commenced with the opening and closing of the Lodge of Silent Temple No 126 using the original ritual of the lodge dating back to 1762. This provided an interesting start to the evening for the brethren, who then retired to the newly refurbished Library dining room to hear Chris Powell deliver his paper as part of the Association meeting

Chris Powell

Chris Powell

The trinity of Knoop, Jones and Hamer is probably second only to the importance of R.F.

Gould in the pantheon of Masonic historians in England. As a by-product of trying to unravel the mystery of Knoop’s lecture delivered to MLMR in May 1948 (‘Dr Anderson and the Charges of a Freemason’, subsequently forbidden by UGLE to be published) Bro. Powell has uncovered surprising links of both Knoop and Jones to Manchester and the North-West.

We learnt that out of the three only Knoop was actually a Freemason. He did have connections with Manchester having been born and educated there. He settled in Sheffield where he lectured at the university as Professor of Economics.

Jones was from Liverpool. He too became a lecturer at Sheffield and succeeded Knoop as Professor of Economics.

Hamer, was also from Liverpool. He served in the First World War and later lectured at Sheffield in English. Chris gave an interesting talk on all three authors and described that their work had ‘stood the test of time’.

Following the completion of the Association business Philip Myers – President of the Association declared the meeting closed and the brethren enjoyed a wonderful and delicious three course festive board during which Chris continued to enlighten the brethren with during the discussions that followed.

Phil Myers (President) centre with Lodge and Association members and visitors

Phil Myers (President) centre with Lodge and Association members and visitors

WBro John Acaster’s Visit to Denmark

WBro John Acaster (right) with his hosts

WBro John Acaster (right) with his hosts

John Acaster, Past President of MAMR, recently visited Denmark and in particular The Danish research Lodge  Sit Lux, where he gave a lecture. His Danish hosts made him most welcome as can be seen in the selection of photographs.

The festive board

Discussion at the festive board

There was much discussion at the festive board following the meeting

Spiritual Paths of Masons in Continental Europe

The brethren of MAMR were joined at the November meeting by WBro Dr Michel Jaccard, PhD at Manchester Hall.

The evening commenced with a meeting of The Lodge of Silent Temple which utilised the original Lodge opening and closing ritual dating back to 1726.

Following the closing of the lodge the Association meeting was opened and Bro Jacccard introduced, who hails from the French Swiss border area of Switzerland.

Michel is himself especially knowledgeable concerning esoteric interpretations, he was initiated in 1971, He is a Past President of GRA, the Grand Lodge Alpina Research group and is currently their webmaster. (www.masonica-gra.ch) Professionally he is expert in R&D and Quality.Logo_gra_85

Bro. Jaccard informed the brethren about the background to Freemasonry in Switzerland with special reference to its symbolic and ritual richness. The first Lodge in Switzerland was formed in 1736 and today there are today 83 lodges with 3700 members. Female Freemasonry also takes place in Switzerland, taking the total membership to 5000 Freemasons.

European Freemasonry is often known as ‘Continental Freemasonry’ and usually linked to the so-called ‘liberal’ style of Freemasonry such as that practiced by The Grand Orient de France, who allow discussion on political, social and religious issues.

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Bro Jaccard (left) with MAMR President Phil Myers at the festive board

With most European Freemasons belonging to Lodges that are affiliated to Grand Lodges who fully respect the land marks set out by The United Grand Lodge of England, this papare proved most interesting as it described the spiritual or modern paths in full agreement with Masonic values and rituals that many European brethren embrace.

Following the paper, the brethren retired for dinner where much discussion and debate continued on this most interesting subject.

The full paper will be available as part of the transactions book published later in the year.