White Horse Lodge
Lodge No. 2227
Meeting at The Masonic Hall, Warminster Road, Westbury, Wiltshire.
Meets at 6.30pm on the third Tuesday in every month (except June, July and August)
Installation meeting October when the Lodge Tyles 5.30pm
First in - last out
It really wasn't surprising that the Installation meeting at White Horse Lodge No. 2227 was conducted with military precision, or that it was an object lesson in how to move around the Lodge; after all, one was spoilt for choice with a Warrant Officer in the Secretary's chair, another in the Senior Deacon's chair and yet another Installed as Master of the Lodge.
Yet in the hour before the meeting all talk centred on the absolutely scrumptious Victoria sponge cake baked by Westbury's very own 'Mary Berry' otherwise known as Mrs Chisholm - no wonder Bruce always looks happy. After indulging in sheer baking heaven - the jam was superb - washed down by lashings of tea, the forty seven Brethren made their way into the Lodge Room.
The musicological talents of John Beech were employed to full effect on the electronic organ, supplemented by the mellifluous tones of Simon Grove and the incredible acoustics of the old chapel coming together to make the opening ode sound quite magnificent, so much so I swear I saw a tear in Clive Smith's eye; a Welshman to the very core, appreciating the sound of a male voice choir - well ......... almost a choir.
A Grand procession led by Larry Baldry pro tem Grand Sword Bearer, the Provincial Grand Master for Wiltshire and his Wardens entered the Lodge Room and what a splendid sight it was. It came as no surprise that Bro Philip Bullock declined the gavel - apart from the small matter of not being rehearsed (does a PrGM need to rehearse?). He just wanted to sit back and enjoy the ceremony, especially as the incoming Master was Paul Brown.
Paul is a valued member of the Provincial Communciation Team, working closely with Mike Wilson in setting up and manning the Provincial Display Stand; he was also Invested as a Provincial Grand Steward at Provincial Grand Lodge on 2 October.
Every Installation has its 'special moment' and Paul's was certainly no exception - an incredibly proud father presented the Working Tools to a very proud son who listened intently to the words his father spoke - the presentation was of the highest order, delivered with great skill and conviction.
The Provincial Wardens have certainly got into their stride, delivering the address to the Wardens and to the Brethren with great aplomb. It is a great comfort to know that they have the support of the Provincial Grand Director of Ceremonies or one of his team should they ever need a prompt.
Installation meetings do attract visitors and it is for this reason that the Festive Board is held in the nearby Laverton Hall where we were treated to good food in superb company and with short speeches. The evening was nicely rounded off with Simon Grove putting his bass baritone to full use in a word perfect rendition of The Masters Song, accompanied on the piano by John Beech.
A wonderful evening, enjoyed by all and yes, Paul was - 'first in and last out'.