Mistley Chapter recently celebrated its 25th anniversary with a visit from our Assistant to the Provincial Grand Principals, John Crudgington, skilfully escorted by Ralph Ankers Provincial Deputy Grand Director of Ceremonies. It was our installation meeting, at which Jerry Watsham installed Keith Ralph Past Provincial Grand Registrar into the Chair of Zerubbabel for the second time. John Parker and Brian Hamilton Past Assistant Grand Director of Ceremonies were installed as Haggai and Joshua respectively
David Branch, the only remaining subscribing Founder, presented a brief history of the Chapter. He paid tribute to the persistence and foresight of Frank Wheatley, the founding MEZ and then Scribe E until his untimely death less than two years after the consecration.
The Consecration was a splendid affair, attended by 90 Companions (a number which our Health and Safety Laws do not now permit!) and graced by Sir Neil Thorne, C W Key, Second Provincial Grand Principal, A E Simons, Third Provincial Grand Principal and the Deputy Grand Superintendent, Peter Nievens, a great friend of the Chapter.
All the Founders and some of the early Exaltees were presented with an engraved goblet by John Carrington and a distinctive pair of cufflinks by Don Candy.
The Festive Board was a joyous affair, comprising a five-course dinner costing £20 inclusive of pre-dinner drinks, wines, liqueurs and afternoon tea.
Branch recalled some of the other outstanding characters of the first 25 years: Tony Lingard, a wonderful ritualist, John Tritton, who obtained second-hand the Chapter’s furniture, Peter Gosling, the only other surviving Founder, now an Honorary Member, whose ability to create some of the Chapter furniture saved money and gave the Chapter the character it has today. We hope to carry on those traditions for many years to come!