Provincial Grand Lodge of Warwickshire

Royal Masonic School for Girls, Rickmansworth - Prize Giving

On a very warm summer day at the Royal Masonic School for Girls, Rickmansworth, it was a pleasure to see so many parents, staff and governors watching the happy pupils receiving their well earned prizes and trophies.

The school (now known as RMS for Girls), started with fifteen pupils and a matron in Somers Place in East London and moved twice within London until it finally settled in the magnificent grounds of Rickmansworth Park, Hertfordshire, in 1934.  RMS is one of the oldest girls’ schools in the country. Founded in 1788 by Chevalier Ruspini (founder of the former Royal Masonic Trust for Girls & Boys, now part of the Masonic Charitable Foundation), the School's original purpose was to educate the daughters of Freemasons who were unable to support their families through death, illness or disability.

The School became an open fee paying school in 1978 and accepts girls from all backgrounds and faiths. The majority of families associated with the School have no links with Freemasonry, with the name now largely being a reference to the school's past. 

With 315 acres of stunning grounds, Rickmansworth Park once surrounded a stately home. The school was purpose built on its site, making the most of its generous land.  With over 3000 trees, rolling grassland and exceptional facilities, the staff and students are indeed blessed to live and work in such a beautiful place. When the School was designed, the size, scale and quality of the buildings was extremely generous to a fault. The aerial shot below gives as idea of the extent of the school and its magnificent grounds.

RMS for Girls

Despite the reduced dependence on Freemasonry, this is an amazing school which embraces its traditions while looking forward to the future.  The school motto comes from Psalm 144, “That our daughters may be as the polished cornerstones of the Temple.”   The Ashlar is a traditional and valued award given as a silver badge to girls in recognition of their hard work, demonstration of the school values, and contributions to school life.  Pupils have the opportunity to earn an Ashlar at various stages in their school life at senior school and sixth form.

 The presentation

This photograph shows the Great Hall at Rickmansworth, where the prize giving took place, and the concert by the recipient years & the RMS Orchestra performed songs and music ranging from Elton John to Sibelius.

The Warwickshire Masonic Charitable Association contributes £500 annually to fund the prizes for the pupils, and has had the daughters of several Warwickshire freemasons educated at the school in past years. For further information on the School click HERE.

JBH

 

Nuneaton’s newly bereaved get extra support thanks to Warwickshire Freemasons

A drop-in service for newly bereaved people has been established at Nuneaton’s Mary Ann Evans Hospice, thanks to a £12,723 grant from Warwickshire Freemasons.

The grant from Warwickshire Freemasons comes through the Masonic Charitable Foundation, which is funded by Freemasons, their families and friends, from across England and Wales.

The grant has been awarded for a new strand of bereavement support called Stepping Stones, which is a regular drop-in session for people who are newly bereaved. We invite people to come along for some light refreshments and an opportunity to meet with a few other people who are experiencing grief in its early stages.

The hospice is working in partnership with Nuneaton Crematorium and three local funeral directors with this project to encourage more people to access bereavement support where needed. Many people do not know they can access the hospice's bereavement support network, especially if they have not previously been connected with it. Funeral directors offer supportive great support to their customers around the time of death but are very aware of the limitations of their role. It therefore makes perfect sense for funeral directors, the Crematorium and the hospice to form a partnership.

In the last six months of 2017 the Hospice’s bereavement service facilitated approximately 1,800 visits to its bespoke building, the Warren. Over 200 people of all ages regularly access the different kinds of bereavement support being offered.

It is vitally important that children and young people know they can come to a place where their grief is going to be acknowledged and supported in a confidential setting. A parent of children under 18 dies every 22 minutes in the UK; around 23,600 a year. That means 111 children are being bereaved every day. One in every 29 schoolchildren has been bereaved of a parent or sibling – that’s a child in every class. If children and young people are not offered the right levels of bereavement support the grief will come out some years later, often in disruptive behaviour.

Pauline, who lost her son in 2014, said: “I contacted the Mary Ann Evans Hospice bereavement support service four years ago.  My son, Neil had been going through a particularly difficult time with his life-limiting illness.  I have really valued having the space to talk with someone over this period time and especially since his death.”

Geoff Walker and the Stepping Stones Team

Gill Hancock, Director of Family Support Services from Mary Ann Evans Hospice commented: “We’re very grateful to Warwickshire Freemasons for their generous grant, which will allow us to help many more newly bereaved people, so that they are not suffering in silence.”

Geoff Walker from Warwickshire Freemasons said: “We’re very pleased to be able to help the Mary Ann Evans Hospice with their Stepping Stones project for newly bereaved people. The pain of losing a loved one is very difficult to bear at any time, but it’s especially difficult for young people. If they don’t get the right support when they need it, the long term effects can damage their lives for years into the future.”

 

Extending the hand of friendship overseas

Recently W Bro Paul Skinner of St Johns Lodge No 2811 had the opportunity to visit Sir Stanford Raffles Lodge No 7444 in the District Grand Lodge of the Eastern Archipelago residing in the Singapore Lodge rooms.

Singapore Visit

Paul presented a framed Summons to the Worshipful Master of their lodge W Bro Paul Youg commemorating the visit. The summons had been signed by all the Brethren of St Johns 2811 and the visitors on the night from their last regular meeting held in Coventry in March. This was well received by him and their 60 strong brethren. They suggested that it should be mounted within the Lodge rooms in the near future in a convenient place of prominence, for future visitors to their lodge to admire, and thanked W Bro Paul and the Brethren of St Johns Lodge no 2811 for their kind gesture.

Family Fun Day - Saturday 14th July

Join Apollo, Seymour and Forge Mill Lodges

for a Family Funday on Saturday 14th July

For tickets email: W Bro Steve Walker on This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or W Bro Paul Beaumont on This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

Family Funday

The Provincial Church Service 2018

The Annual Church Service of the

Provincial Grand Lodge of Warwickshire

Sunday 10th June 2018

The Collegiate Church of St Mary, Warwick

 Church

This year’s Church Service began with a procession escorting R W Bro David Macey, Provincial Grand Master, comprising his newly appointed team of Acting Provincial Grand Officers and Officers of Grand Lodge from Alderson House through Warwick to the Church. The weather was warm and sunny, and visitors to Warwick had their cameras at the ready to capture the spectacle of Freemasons processing in full Regalia.

The Procession

Procession on the way to St Mary’s

This year, the procession was joined by the Lord Lieutenant of Warwickshire, Mr Timothy B Cox, and the High Sherriff of Warwickshire, Mrs Clare Sawdon.

The Procession entering the Church

The procession escorting the Provincial Grand Master into the Church

At the Church the procession joined the assembled Freemasons with their families and friends for a very enjoyable and inspirational service. The service started and finished with readings from the Holy Scriptures of the Hindu, Sikh, Islamic, Jewish and Christian faiths, delivered by W Bro Suresh Modi, W Bro Parminder Bhamra, W Bro Sohail Karamat, W Bro Keith Reynolds and W Bro Paul Wheeler respectively. These readings served to emphasise the inclusive nature of Freemasonry in Warwickshire.

Following readings from both the Deputy Provincial Grand Master, VW Bro Michael Morris and the Provincial Grand Master, RW Bro David Macey, and hymns sung with great gusto, the Provincial Choir sang Handel’s Anthem “Zadok the Priest”, thought to have been written in 1727. The Anthem is derived from the biblical account of the anointing of Solomon and was magnificently performed by the Choir, conducted by W Bro Michael Irving, and featured a splendid organ recital by Mr Mark Swinton, Organist and Assistant Director of Music at the Church.

The Choir

The Choir at the Annual Church Service, Warwick

The address by the Rev Dr Vaughan Roberts was themed "300 Years on – What Next?", and questioned how we should move forward after the extensive Tercentenary celebrations. The conclusion is that we should continue to make our mark in the world, and echo the sentiments expressed by the Grand Master – Do not hide the Light which has shone in our Tercentenary year. We need to be open and proud of our Freemasonry and its history.

The Service

 Prior to two rousing verses of the National Anthem, the Provincial Grand Master thanked Rev Dr Vaughan Roberts for again allowing the service to be held at St Mary’s, and congratulated all concerned with the organisation of the event. He particularly thanked W Bro Michael Irving and the choir for the wonderful way in which they had sung and enhanced the entire service, and particularly mentioned the Mr Mark Swinton for his masterly playing of the organ prior to and throughout the service.

The Order of Service contained a brief summary of the connections between Freemasonry and St Mary’s, and mentioned that during the recently concluded “Famous Five” initiative, over £32,000 had been donated by Warwickshire Freemasons to the Church. Rev Dr Roberts, mentioned that the final sum received would be used to replace the aging sound system in use in the Church.

An uplifting day, enjoyed by all.

Photography by W Bro Simon Grove

JBH

Contact Us

The Provincial Grand Lodge of Warwickshire
Yenton Assembly Rooms
73, Gravelly Hill North, Erdington
Birmingham B23 6BJ

Twitter: https://twitter.com/WarwickshirePGL

For Masonic enquiries:
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Tel: 0121 454 4422

The United Grand Lodge of England (UGLE) is the governing body for freemasons within England and Wales and districts overseas.