Celebrating 300 years

Jayson on a roll for world record

A drummer beat the world record for the longest single drum roll – but ended up in hospital as a result. Jayson Brinkler started the roll at 3am and played for 12 hours, five minutes and five seconds – despite injuring his wrist just days before. The eight-time British champion drummer smashed the previous record by five minutes and two seconds to see him achieve his childhood dream of securing an individual place in the Guinness World Records. 

Jayson, 44, who was raising money for the Royal Masonic Trust for Girls and Boys, performed the drum roll at Highfield Baptist Church in Dartford. 

He has previously performed on children’s TV show Blue Peter and at the opening ceremony of the London 2012 Olympic Games. 

Published in RMTGB

Father inspires marathon effort in Paris

A Freemason’s son was inspired to take on the 26-mile Paris Marathon by his father’s dedication to supporting the Masonic Samaritan Fund (MSF). Elliot Mason’s father, Robert, is a Metropolitan Grand Lodge Freemason from Perfect Ashlar Lodge, No. 1178. Elliot said, 

‘I came to support the MSF through my dad, who is incredibly passionate about the work the charity does.’

Published in Masonic Samaritan Fund
Friday, 04 September 2015 01:00

Universities Scheme expands in Buckinghamshire

New university recruits in Bucks

The Universities Scheme is well underway in Buckinghamshire with Marlow Lodge, No. 2752, joining Grenville Lodge, No. 1787, in the recruitment of graduates and students. At its first meeting under the scheme, Marlow Lodge initiated graduate Jed Russell (23), and students Mohammad Malik (19) and Nathan Kapoor (24) from Buckinghamshire New University, which is based at High Wycombe.  

Published in Universities Scheme

Hospice gets Parisian boost

Four members of St Augustine’s Lodge, No. 3713, and Redditch Rugby Club set off on a bike ride from the club to Paris with five friends to raise funds for the Acorns Children’s Hospice Trust. The four-day trip covered 320 miles, with the cyclists resting at 20- to 30-mile intervals. Around £5,000 was raised for the charity, which provides care for life-threatened and terminally ill children and their families in the Midlands.

Blackpool’s big charity night

Blackpool Group of Lodges and Chapters staged its annual Charity Giving Night at the masonic hall, distributing more than £34,000 to 55 local and national charities. Pete Mercer of the Fylde Coast Carers Centre, one of the recipients, said, ‘It is a phenomenal sum and an aspect of Freemasonry that goes unrecognised by the majority of the general public.’

All the money was raised from donations by lodges and chapters within the Blackpool Group and from the West Lancashire Freemasons’ Charity. Among the beneficiaries were Trinity Hospice and its children’s wing Brian House, which received £6,848; North West Air Ambulance, receiving £3,825; and Blackpool Victoria Hospital, with £2,675.

More than £1m for West Wales

The Province of West Wales has raised £1,079,614 in its Festival for the Grand Charity, which was announced at an event in Llanelli attended by Pro Grand Master Peter Lowndes. Among other guests were President of the Grand Charity Richard Hone, Chief Executive Laura Chapman and Provincial Grand Master Stephen Hookey, who said: ‘The appeal was launched in May 2009 at a time when the global recession had taken hold and austerity was to become a watchword for several years to come. Thanks to your generosity in these difficult times, the figure for which we aimed has been surpassed significantly.’

Published in The Grand Charity

Jayne Torvill meets Nottingham masons

Ice-dancing celebrity Jayne Torvill OBE made a stop at the masonic stand when she visited the Great Central Railway in Ruddington for a day of fundraising to help local charity and adoption agency Faith in Families. Born locally in Clifton, the Olympic gold medallist (pictured above at the event) is a patron of the charity.

Local Freemasons organised the fundraiser in conjunction with the heritage railway, and the masonic stand was manned by members of South Notts Freemasons for Charity. The group meets at West Bridgford and was formed to raise funds for local good causes. 

Doctors endorse Devon first aid plan

Two doctors – both Freemasons – have endorsed the Province of Devonshire’s Masonic First Aid initiative. At a meeting of Lodge of Felicity, No. 5336, Plymouth, GP Dr Adrian Rogers received a cheque for £1,000 from consultant vascular surgeon Simon Ashley for the project. The initiative aims to provide readily accessible first aid equipment in locations across Devon, and forms part of the Province’s celebrations for the Tercentenary in 2017.

The reinterment of Richard III

The Province of Leicestershire and Rutland and the Grand Charity have donated £15,000 to Leicester Cathedral Charitable Trust for the reinterment of Richard III. The contribution went towards the £2.54 million appeal, which has funded a tomb and alterations to the cathedral, including a new chapel. 

David Monteith, Dean of Leicester Cathedral, said, ‘We were delighted to have had the support and interest of the Freemasons from the very start of this project on both a national and local level.’

Sharing the experience

Shine, a national charity that supports people with spina bifida and hydrocephalus, has received £35,000 from The Freemasons’ Grand Charity. The grant will fund a development coordinator to manage the Shine40Plus network, which helps people aged 40 and over who are affected by these conditions to make connections and to share their experiences and knowledge with one another. 

The Deputy Provincial Grand Master for Northamptonshire and Huntingdonshire, Dr Vivian Thomas, said, ‘It is wonderful to be able to help bring people together, ensuring they receive the guidance and support they need to move into the next stage of their lives with happiness and a sense of belonging.’ 

Shine CEO Jackie Bland added, ‘This generous grant will fund the post for one year. This network is the first of its kind in the country to support older survivors of spina bifida and hydrocephalus.’

Published in The Grand Charity
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