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An Executive visit to Sanderstead Lodge

In March 2019, I had the pleasure of visiting our Deputy Provincial Grand Master’s Lodge, Sanderstead No 1742, meeting at Croydon.

The afternoon started off with a Royal Ark Mariners Lodge meeting where the Worshipful Commander, W.Bro. Michael Sharpling, welcomed me and the Provincial Officers.

An Executive visit to Sanderstead Lodge

After a short RAM meeting a Lodge of Mark Master Masons was opened. The Provincial Grand Director of Ceremonies, W.Bro. Richard Knox, PGSD, my Escorting Officer, was admitted and advised the Worshipful Master, W.Bro. Michael Sharpling, that I was in the ante room and respectfully demanded admission to the Lodge.

I had the pleasure of being escorted into the Lodge by two Very Worshipful Brethren. VW.Bro. Richard Baker, PGJO, Deputy Provincial Grand Master, the Lodge Director of Ceremonies, and VW.Bro. David Blackburn, PGJO, Past Deputy Provincial Grand Master, the Lodge Treasurer.

I was welcomed by the Worshipful Master, presented with the gavel and took the Chair. I said that it was a great pleasure to be visiting Sanderstead Lodge, my last Official Visit as an Assistant Provincial Grand Master. I spoke about the various ongoing initiatives, especially events in support of the 2022 Festival. After introducing the Provincial team I took the minutes and vacated the Chair.

An Executive visit to Sanderstead Lodge

Next on the agenda was the installation of W.Bro. Clive Harris, as Worshipful Master. This was done in a very sincere manner by W.Bro. Michael Sharpling, who presented the Working Tools and gave the Address to the Master. W.Bro. Ricky Toomey, ProvGStwd, gave the Address to the Wardens; VW.Bro. Richard Baker, the Address to the Overseers and I gave the Address to the Brethren.

Afterwards I congratulated W.Bro. Clive Harris on going into the Chair once again and wished him and the Lodge a successful and enjoyable year.

An Executive visit to Sanderstead Lodge

I was then presented with a bottle of ArArAt Brandy. This was reputed to be Sir Winston Churchill's favourite Armenian brandy. The prime minister developed a taste for the ArArAt brandy when it was served by Stalin at the Yalta conference in February 1945.

An Executive visit to Sanderstead Lodge

The meeting ended with W.Bro. Steve Jones, Provincial Grand Charity Steward, giving one of his entertaining and informative presentations on the Mark Benevolent Fund. I thank the members of the Lodge for their hospitality, the Provincial Team for coming along to support me, and W.Bro. Richard for escorting me on my last visit, wishing him every success as he takes on my role in two days time.

An Executive visit to Sanderstead Lodge

After the Lodge was closed the Brethren of Sanderstead Lodge and their guests retired to the bar.

An Executive visit to Sanderstead Lodge

We then sat down to a most enjoyable meal at the Masonic Hall, Croydon, where the members of the Allied Masonic Degrees wore their AMD napkins to promote the Order to Mark Masons.

An Executive visit to Sanderstead Lodge

Sanderstead Lodge is a member of the Cryer Group meeting at Croydon and any Brethren who would like to visit would be made most welcome

Article and photographs by Chris Eley