Four Freemasons took on the ‘Five Peaks Challenge' in September 2018 to raise over £2,200 for the charity Dogs for Good

The challenge entailed climbing and descending the highest peaks of the home nations of England (Scafell Pike), Wales (Snowdon), Scotland (Ben Nevis) and Northern Ireland (Slieve Donard), and the highest peak in the Republic of Ireland (Carrauntoohil). In just five days, the four members, all in their fifties, drove 1,800 miles and climbed over 10,000 metres.

The four members who completed the task were: Stuart Lutes, Charity Steward of La Belle Sauvage Lodge No. 3095 in London, Mark O’Shaughnessy and Jeff Wall, Secretary and Junior Deacon respectively of Bodina Lodge No. 9121 in Hertfordshire, and Eddie Higgins, of Mariners’ Lodge No. 168 in Guernsey.

Dogs for Good is a life-transforming charity, creating partnerships between people living with disability, including children with autism, and specially-trained assistance dogs.

So far, over £1,700 has been raised by online donations with La Belle Sauvage Lodge boosting this by making a generous donation of £500.

You can sponsor the Challenge by clicking here

Lifelites Chief Executive Simone Enefer-Doy has left Freemasons' Hall to kick-start her 2,500 mile journey to 47 famous landmarks to raise awareness of Lifelites and £50,000 for the charity

Dubbed 'A Lift for Lifelites', Simone will see Freemasons in nearly every Province in England and Wales and will be stopping at landmarks such as Hadrian’s Wall, Angel of the North and Bletchley Park in vehicles including a classic Rolls Royce, a camper van, a four seater plane, an E Type Jaguar and even a zip wire.

Simone said: 'With the help of Freemasons and their vehicles around the country, I’m on a mission to raise the profile of our work and raise more funds to reach more children whose lives could be transformed by the technology we can provide.'

We'll be updating this page regularly, including images, as Simone continues on her epic quest.

Day 14 – Thursday 7 June

That's a wrap! Simone completed her 14 day challenge and finished in style on ThamesJet speedboat with guests including United Grand Lodge of England Chief Executive Dr David Staples. Her fundraising currently stands at over £103,000.

Day 13 – Wednesday 6 June

It's the penultimate day, starting with a trip to Bedfordshire at the Shuttleworth Collection. The next stop was Silverstone racetrack in Northamptonshire, which included completing a lap in a Jaguar, before driving this to Bletchley Park in Buckinghamshire. The last trip was to the home, studios and gardens of former artist Henry Moore in Hertfordshire.

Day 12 – Tuesday 5 June

Day 12 took in journeys across Lincolnshire, Norfolk, Suffolk and Cambridgeshire. The first stop was Gordon Boswell Romany Museum in Lincolnshire before using two vehicles, a Hudson Straight Six Touring Sedan and a Range Rover, to Bressington Steam and Gardens in Norfolk. There was still time to grab lunch at Bury St Edmunds Abbey in Suffolk before a BMW took Simone to her final stop in Cambridgeshire, which included a punt on the River Cam.

Day 11 – Monday 4 June

Simone crammed in four locations to start the week, with a wide variety of vehicles used. The day started in Yorkshire Sculpture Park before driving a 1977 Bentley to the National Tramway Museum in Derbyshire. It was from here that Simone then picked up a DeLorean to take her to Newstead Abbey in Nottinghamshire before completing the day by driving a gold Rolls-Royce to Victoria Park in Leicestershire.

Day 10 – Sunday 3 June

The week concludes with trips to Northumberland, Durham and Yorkshire and East Riding, as well as the news that Simone had already hit her £50,000 target. Trips included the Millennium Bridge in Northumberland, the Angel of the North and a scenic drive across the Yorkshire Moors to Bolton Castle.

Day 9 – Saturday 2 June

Day nine saw visits to the Provinces of West Lancashire and Cumberland and Westmorland, with landmarks including Hadrian’s Wall in Cumbria and transport provided by a horse and cart.

Day 8 – Friday 1 June

Two Rolls-Royces helped provide the transport on day nine, with Simone starting at the Avoncroft Museum in Worcestershire, driving down to New Place in Warwickshire and then to the National Memorial Arboretum in Staffordshire. There was still time to conclude the day by visiting Manchester Cathedral in East Lancashire.

Day 7 – Thursday 31 May

At the halfway point, Simone made trips to Cheshire, Shropshire and Herefordshire – starting out at the Georgian Hall Dunham Massey, then heading to the RAF Museum Cosford in a custom built Rewaco Bike and finally, to Arthur’s Stone.

Day 6 – Wednesday 30 May

Day six was solely focused in North Wales where Simone took on the challenge of the fastest zip wire in the world. This was then followed by making the journey to Chester in a six month old blue McLaren Spider and flanked by the Widows’ Sons motorcyclists and Blood Bike volunteers.

Day 5 – Tuesday 29 May

Day five was a journey across the borders for Simone as she ventured to Oxfordshire before heading west to Monmouthshire and continued to South Wales and West Wales. Landmarks included Radcliffe Camera in Oxford, Caerleon Amphitheatre in Newport, the Donald Gordon theatre in Cardiff and ending the day in the county town of Carmarthen to meet the Provincial Grand Lodge of West Wales.

Day 4 – Monday 28 May

Simone began day four by driving an Aston Martin DB9 to the Grand Pier in Weston-super-Mare with help from the Provincial Grand Lodge of Somerset. A 1928 MG Riley saloon then took Simone to her next port of call, Clifton Suspension Bridge where the Provincial Grand Lodge of Bristol had a 1966 Austin Mini Cooper waiting to take her to Caen Hill Locks. It was here that Simone met representatives from the Provincial Grand Lodge of Wiltshire, before the final stop of the day saw her clock up the miles to Shaw House in Berkshire to be greeted by members of the Provincial Grand Lodge of Berkshire.

Day 3 – Sunday 27 May

Day three involved journeys to Dorset, Devon and Cornwall. It started with a visit to Lulworth Cove in Dorset to be met by members from the Provincial Grand Lodge in a yellow camper van and to receive a donation of £2,000. Simone then ventured to Buckfast Abbey to receive a donation of £5,000 from the Provincial Grand Lodge of Devonshire before departing in a classic Rover to head to Lanhydrock House and Garden in Cornwall, where she received another donation of £1,750.

Day 2 – Saturday 26 May

Simone took to the sky for day two, meeting a representative from the Provincial Grand Lodge of Hampshire and Isle of Wight who drove her to Southampton to board a flight to Jersey, to meet members of the Provincial Grand Lodge of Guernsey and Alderney.

Day 1 – Friday 25 May

Simone has begun her challenge, leaving in a taxi escorted by a fleet of Widows Sons motorcyclists. This is the start of her 14 day road trip with a difference, using a variety of unusual and extraordinary forms of transport.

The next destination for Friday was Richmond Park where Simone was met by representatives from the Provincial Grand Lodge of Middlesex after arriving in a Porsche 550 Spyder. Further destinations included Guildford Cathedral, where Simone was met by a Noddy car, and Brighton Royal Pavilion, where the Provincial Grand Lodge of Sussex made a donation of £5,000.

Lifelites has a package of their magical technology at every children’s hospice across the British Isles and their work is entirely funded by donations. Through the journey they are seeking to raise £50,000 – that’s the cost of one of their projects for four years.

You can sponsor Simone by clicking here

Published in Lifelites
Wednesday, 13 December 2017 00:00

OSM citation for W Bro Keith Gilbert, PSGD

Quarterly Communication

13 December 2017 
Order of Service to Masonry Citation for W Bro Keith Gilbert, PSGD

Bro Keith Gilbert was made a Mason in November, 1972, at the age of 27, in Radius Lodge, No. 5474, in London, and was installed as Master of Skelmersdale Lodge, No. 1380 in West Lancashire in 1984. He has at various times been a member of eight other Lodges and has served as Master of five of them. He was exalted into the Royal Arch in Bedeword Chapter, No. 7274 in Warwickshire in 1976, and served as First Principal of Harpenden Chapter, No. 4314 in Hertfordshire in 1995. He is, or has been, a member of three other Chapters. He remains active in Hertfordshire as Secretary of a Lodge, Scribe E of a Chapter and Immediate Past Master of the Province’s Lodge of Installed Masters.

Bro Gilbert was appointed a Provincial Grand Steward in Hertfordshire in 1995 and held various other offices in that Province before he became Provincial Grand Secretary in 2004. On relinquishing that office in 2011 he was appointed an Assistant Provincial Grand Master, holding that office for four years. Bro Gilbert holds the rank of Past Senior Grand Deacon in the Craft, and Past Grand Standard Bearer in the Royal Arch. He also served as a Grand Steward on the nomination of Globe Lodge, No. 23 in 2014.

In 2015 Bro Gilbert was appointed as the unpaid Team Leader for the Tercentenary Planning Committee, which reported direct to the Board of General Purposes. He was therefore directly responsible for coordinating all the Tercentenary events throughout the Provinces and Districts, as well as linking in and coordinating the requirements of our guests from the many Grand Lodges around the world, and masterminding and planning all administrative matters for the period 29th to 31st October 2017.

He selected and built up a team with great skill and they worked well with him. He planned everything well in advance and in great detail, endeavouring to ensure that nothing was missed. Initially he would spend about two days a week in the office, but that gradually increased until 2017 when he spent most working days at Freemasons’ Hall.

That all the Tercentenary events went so smoothly was down to the outstanding determination and dedication of Bro Gilbert over a three-year period of intense and detailed hard work. For ensuring the success of Grand Lodge’s Tercentenary celebrations, Bro Gilbert is awarded the Grand Master’s Order of Service to Masonry.

Published in Speeches

Watford Hospital thanks local lodge

Doctors, nurses and other staff from Bluebell ward at Watford Hospital have thanked Lodge of Light and Honour, No. 7894, Province of Hertfordshire, after it donated more than £400 of gifts to support patients staying on the ward.

Bluebell is a dedicated ward for frail and elderly patients who also have dementia. The gifts, which include puzzles and model kits, were donated by Charity Steward Martin Abrahams and lodge member Colin Stodel, a volunteer at the hospital.

Samantha Jones, chief executive of West Hertfordshire Hospitals, said: ‘Bluebell ward recently won a national award for the standard of care it provides to our patients, and donations like these help our team to keep their patients entertained and active.’

Kilimanjaro climb for children’s hospital

Dale Murphy, from Gorhambury Lodge, No. 8745, Province of Hertfordshire, is all set to climb Mount Kilimanjaro in February, raising vital funds for Great Ormond Street Hospital and the Cystic Fibrosis Trust

After hearing about a close friend’s baby daughter being diagnosed with cystic fibrosis, Dale accepted the challenge of raising more than £4,000 by climbing the highest free-standing mountain in the world. 

Dale put his training to the test recently by taking part in the Mountain Trail Challenge, a 30-mile trek over the Brecon Beacons in Wales, completing the gruelling course in 10 hours 50 minutes. This raised an additional £100 from his lodge members, taking his current fundraising total to £3,000. 

Hertfordshire launches appeal

The Province of Hertfordshire has launched its 2019 Festival Appeal for the RMTGB at a series of dedicated events. The five-year appeal will see the Province’s five thousand six hundred Freemasons aim towards a final Festival target of £3 million. 

The donations will be used to fund the RMTGB’s core work of supporting around two thousand children and young people from masonic families in financial hardship each year, in addition to grants made through its Stepping Stones scheme. In Hertfordshire alone, more than one hundred and seventy children have been supported during the past five years.

Launching the appeal, Provincial Grand Master Paul Gower said: ‘I hope that the Freemasons of “Happy Hertfordshire” will produce a sum worthy of our Province, and so enable the RMTGB to continue its work of relieving hardship in the families of our less fortunate brethren.’

For more information about the 2019 Festival Appeal, go to www.rmtgb.org 

Published in RMTGB

Step change for Chelsea

Hertfordshire Freemasons have helped put a smile on the face of 10-year-old Chelsea, from Hatfield, who was born with cerebral palsy and has limited movement. Her grandfather had raised enough money to buy a frame to enable her to learn to walk, but despite the aid for her legs, Chelsea was unable to control the position of her head and upper body, making it awkward and painful to move. 

Specialist charity DEMAND sought help from Hertfordshire masons, whose £1,000 donation enabled a bespoke head rest and shoulder brace to feature in the frame’s design, meaning Chelsea is now able to walk more easily.

A suburban home in Croxley Green, near Watford in Hertfordshire, has for years been a mecca for families from miles around as W Bro Dave Edwards festoons the whole of his house with Christmas lights

This November Dave, a longtime member of Croxley Green Lodge No. 8636, moved into the limelight himself, as he was first selected by Heart Radio someone who has made a significant contribution to the local Hertfordshire community. Then he saw the switching on of his own lights recorded for all to see on Channel Five television.

There is no doubt among the thousands who have visited his home in Lancing Way that the award was well deserved. Over the years Dave’s lights have not only brought pleasure but have contributed tens of thousands of pounds to numerous charities. Indeed, since he first started in 1978 Dave has raised more than £60,000. 

This festive season, however, not only did he see his own lights switched on – he was also chosen to switch on the whole of the Christmas lights in Watford.

'When you think of all the important people who live in and around Watford, I really felt very proud,' Dave said. 'But I was just as proud when we had 700 people outside my own home for our big switch on!'

His all-lit-up home will be featured on Channel Five television at 9pm on December 19th.

Hertfordshire Lodge of the Legion No. 9827, based in Cheshunt, ensures that as many war memorials as possible throughout Hertfordshire have a poppy wreath laid on Remembrance Sunday each year

In all, members of the lodge lay more than 60 wreaths each year. The first wreath-laying ceremony for this year took place at the Liberator Memorial, by Lt Ellis Way, Cheshunt, on November 2. This was attended by civic leaders, local MPs and councillors, in addition to the Royal British Legion, USAF guard of honour and a three-gun salute from USAF Mildenhall, along with the new Hertfordshire Provincial Grand Master Paul Gower, who laid the wreath on behalf of the Lodge and numerous brethren.

Brief history

On the 12th August 1944, what was then the small town of Cheshunt was saved from a catastrophic disaster that would have cost many of the local citizens their lives. 

An American B24 'Liberator' aircraft from the 392nd Bomber Command, based in Wendling, Norfolk, on route to Germany was involved in a mid air incident above the town. 

The aircraft, under the command of Lt John D. Ellis, fell from the sky and was steered away from Cheshunt, crash landing just outside the town. The B24 Bomber was fully laden and exploded on impact, killing all ten crew members on board. 

The memorial was constructed and unveiled on the 22nd January 2011 at Lieutenant Ellis Way, named after Lt John D. Ellis, through the tireless work and commitment of Ernie Havis a veteran and Royal British Legion local representative. 

At a ceremony on the 12th August this year two flagpoles with the Union flag and Stars and Stripes were erected and dedicated to the site by Col Travis A. Willis, USAF Air Attaché from USA. 

The Lodge of Legion is instrumental in ensuring that the ten crew members are honoured each year.

In their 50th anniversary year the members of Ashwell Lodge No. 4074 in Hertfordshire have raised a magnificent £15,000 which is being donated in equal share to a local children’s hospice and the Masonic Samaritan Fund

This generous donation has been raised through a variety of events including raffles and ladies' nights.

The Worshipful Master, W Bro Don Edwards explained: 'It took two minutes for our members to decide to support the Masonic Samaritan Fund. A Brother was recently supported by the Fund and he was greatly helped so we wished to take this opportunity to give something back.'

Richard Douglas, MSF Chief Executive said: 'On behalf of the Fund I am delighted to accept this very generous donation from the members of Ashwell Lodge which is gratefully received and will be faithfully applied in support of those in need of health and care support. In recognition of this generous donation I am delighted to present to Don Edwards the Lodge’s Grand Patron certificate.'

The generous £7,500 donation from Ashwell Lodge will enable the Masonic Samaritan Fund to restore five people’s sight after cataracts surgery or fund a lifesaving pacemaker.

Published in Masonic Samaritan Fund
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