On 22nd November 2021 everybody involved made the Installation Ceremony for the new Worshipful Master Peter Anderson very enjoyable at Grey Friars Lodge 5169. The Installing Master, Andy Hardie, is a former signalman and a proud Founder Member of The Locomotion Lodge of Mark Master Masons No. 2013 formed for railway enthusiasts
Paul Pitt, a Past Provincial Grand Steward, was delighted to be appointed Director of Ceremonies and looks set to serve the Lodge well for many years ahead having swapped Offices with Michael Ray the Assistant Director of Ceremonies. Caeleb Young did well as Inner Guard which is an auspicious signal as a good Inner Guard usually makes a capable Master.
The Norrie Disease Foundation (NDF) for which TV personality Simon Reeve is an Ambassador is the Charity chosen by the new Worshipful Master of Grey Friars Lodge No. 5169, Peter Anderson, for his Master’s List.
It was while presenting The Big Life Fix for BBC Children in Need that Simon Reeve met young Josh, who has Norrie Disease and was born blind. Simon learned first-hand how difficult Josh finds it to cope with the school playground. The ‘Fix’ was an especially adapted play facility that incorporated guidance paving or ‘braille for feet’ that gave Josh the confidence to play with other children.
Simon Reeve said 'Meeting Josh through The Big Life Fix drove home how difficult life is for children affected by Norrie disease. There are huge obstacles in the way of many of those everyday things we take for granted for our children. Having an organisation like the Norrie Disease Foundation to raise awareness of these challenges and to provide vital support can make all the difference to the children and families affected. I’m happy to be able to support a worthwhile charity'.
The Lodge Secretary of Grey Friars, Graeme Lockwood, a Past Grand Standard Bearer is also well known among Essex Freemasons for being part of the editorial team of the Essex Mason Magazine and as the team leader of the ten volunteers who work hard for the Essex Mason Shop on behalf of the Province. Sales of Masonic regalia generate important income, mainly from Essex Freemasons, especially twice a year when the Craft and Royal Arch promotions are announced but the shop also sells a wide range of masonic paraphernalia and gifts such as cufflinks etc. for presents at Christmas and other special occasions.
The valuable work the Team do is reflected in the £50,000 donation made to the Essex 2022 Festival for the Masonic Charitable Foundation which has pledged £7 million for Charities and good causes in Essex alone, so by supporting Essex Mason you are directly supporting local Essex Charities. With train driver Peter Anderson as Master and ex signalman Andy Hardie as Immediate Past Master Grey Friars Lodge signals a good year ahead.