The annual Old Masonians West Lancashire Lodge No 7702 installation ceremony took place at the Liverpool Masonic Hall. The meeting was opened by the master Elfyn Parry, ably assisted by his officers, who warmly welcomed Peter Levick, the representative of the Provincial Grand Master Tony Harrison, accompanied on this occasion by the Liverpool Group Chairman Mark Matthews.
Following the official welcome, David Massam was presented as master elect by Karl Brennan and Jim Molloy before taking his obligation at the pedestal. Elfyn requested the officers to line up in the north so as to personally thank them and all the other lodge members for their support during his term of office.
In due time, Elfyn installed David into the chair of King Solomon in a correct and precise manner, as per Bottomley workings, after which the past masters of the lodge saluted their newly installed master in the east and west. It was a ceremony of the highest standard demonstrating how much time and effort had been given by all involved and a credit to the director of ceremonies Bill Johnstone. The working tools of each degree were presented and explained by Chris Eaton for the master Masons, Adam Eeles for the fellow crafts and Maurice Bray for the entered apprentices.
A number of addresses were given, all in a dignified manner whilst Peter Levick took to the floor and gave, as to be expected, an immaculate rendition of the address to the brethren of the lodge. He also took the opportunity to express the greetings of the Provincial Grand Master Tony Harrison to the new master, hoping he has a successful and healthy year. These wishes were also extended to all present and the instruction to follow the ethos, that Freemasonry was there to be enjoyed and to have fun.
David Massam thanked Peter for his kind words and on behalf of the lodge members, presented him with a number of charitable cheques to the grand total of £1,100. These were in favour of the Masonic Charitable Foundation 2021 Festival at £300, West Lancashire Freemasons’ Charity for £200, Friends of Tithebarn £200, the Masonic Trust for Boys and Girls £200 and the Royal Masonic Benevolent Institution also for £200.
On completion of the proceedings, the brethren retired to the dining room to enjoy well-earned refreshment at the festive board. The centre piece of any Old Masonians West Lancashire Lodge installation is the array of silver bowls formerly used at the Royal Masonic School at Bushey; the Chandler Challenge Bowl and the Chandler Cup, both presented by ‘Old Boy’ Robert Stanley Chandler. Robert had been the founding senior warden of Old Masonians Lodge No 2700 at London in 1898, and had presented the silverware to the Bushey School when he was appointed to United Grand Lodge in 1925.
It was a very lively dining atmosphere with the brethren taking a full-hearted involvement with plenty of good-natured banter to accompany an excellent meal. The lodge presented Peter and Mark with floral bouquets each for them to pass on to their wonderful wives. Sadly, the evening eventually came to a close with the tyler’s toast as the brethren departed for home.